The Allure of Julian Lefray, by R.S. Grey


Grade: B

Doing it at: 76%

Catnip: Rom Com; Cinderella Story; Banging the Boss; Sex in the City; I’m on a Boat; CoHo Exception

Shame Scale: No shame, this was like a novelization of a Meg Ryan film

Fantasy Cast:  Theo James; Emily Ratajkowski

Book Description:

Subject: Justin Timberlake Nudes!

Lily, you predictable perv. I knew you’d open this email faster if I tempted you with a glimpse of JT’s “PP”. Well, put your pants back on and grab some bubbly because I have much better news to share.


As of tomorrow, I’ll be the new executive assistant at Lorena Lefray Designs. I am SO excited, but there’s one itty bitty problem: I won’t be Lorena’s assistant. I’ll be working for her older brother, Julian.

I know what you’re thinking- “But Jo, what’s the problem?”

Google him. Now. He’s the man in the fitted navy suit whose face reminds you that there’s hope yet for this cruel, ugly world. Keep scrolling…Do you see those dimples? Yup. That’s the Julian Lefray I will be reporting to tomorrow morning.

Lord, help us all…


After reading six dark romances in a row, The Caged series and the Tillie Cole Hades Hangmen books, I was ready for something fluffy. I needed a meringue of a book, and The Allure of Julian Lefray was the perfect palate cleanser. The book reads like a charming romantic comedy, and I would be all over a movie version, especially if my casting advice was followed and we got to watch Theo James in suits for two hours.

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Holiday Cruise, by Erzabet Bishop

holiday cruise

Grade: C+

Doing it at: This all depends on what path you choose!

Catnip: Holiday Romance; Sexy Santa; Light Bondage; Girl on Girl; I’m on a Boat

Shame Scale: Light shame, reading a choose your own adventure is too gimmicky to be anything but fun

Fantasy Cast: N/A

Book Description:

Erin’s friends drag her on a weekend holiday cruise to distract her from a breakup, and various erotic encounters await her onboard

When a choose your own adventure romance popped up in our ARC’s we got pretty excited. We read for FUN here at Mybookshame, and what’s more fun than taking a piece of your childhood and adding a healthy heaping of sex? We were also excited because this was the perfect opportunity for a joint review where we were kind of reading different stories. Cleone already owns one adult choose your own adventure book, but it’s adult as in “hey you could end up digging your own grave after falling in with some meth dealers in Australia!” Not adult as in detailed writing about thrusting. We never don’t want thrusting.

Cleone: This is a compact little book with a few paths to choose from; we open with Erin going on a holiday cruise with her roommates. It was a bonus that this was not only a choose your own adventure book but a HOLIDAY choose your own adventure. When I told this to Mary and Paperback Purist they were both like SEXY SANTA??? And yes, that’s totally an option you can pick.

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The author does a good job of giving us some back story for Erin before getting down to the sex’ing. Erin is coming out of a break up and her four room mates (two gay guys, two straight girls) have brought her on this cruise to hopefully get her some action and perk her on up.

Mary: If by good job, you mean she spends about two pages on back story. Two pages I mostly skimmed because that’s not what I came for. I guess there’s a plot though? Something about an ex who’s engaged?

C: I chose the options that led to Erin having light bondage sex with a photographer who does boudoir photos on the ship. This means that I declined Sexy Santa and a F/F encounter on my first go round. The good news is that you can always go back and see what would have happened if you’d taken a different path! It’s too bad life doesn’t let you do this with regrettable bar adventures and one night stands.

M: I went for the F/F spanking encounter the first go around, but it wasn’t doing much for me. I was in the mood for something a little more al dente, so I started over and went for the Sexy Santa option. Clearly, this ended up being the best choice. This is the only part of the book you need to read, IMO:

“Do you want my special candy cane?” he whispered.

“Oh, yes.”

He reached beneath her and popped open the snaps on the Santa pants. His erection burst forth, and she marveled at just how thick he was. The distinct sound of a foil packet crinkling met her ears, and he slipped the condom over his cock.

“What should santa bring you for Christmas?” Nathan kissed the back of her neck, and her breasts tightened beneath the dress.

“Hmmm. Something hard, I think.” Erin began to gyrate on Santa’s lap and bit back a smile when she heard him suck in a haggard breath.

“You are a very naughty elf.”


“Fuck me, Santa!” Erin ground herself into the root, marveling at the sensation of him inside her.


“Not quite, but I am going to make you scream out the names of every one of my reindeer. And you don’t get to come until you do.” He pounded his length into Erin’s channel.


“Too easy. Another one.”


“Good.” The thrusting continued, and a frisson of electrical sensation sizzled through Erin’s veins as she cam all over his thrusting cock.

“You’re a very naughty elf. Coming before Santa.” Nathan smacked her on the ass and rode her harder. “Another one!”



“Dasher. Prancer. Cupid.” Erin panted as he drove her harder.


C: Bishop does a good job of packing her options with a little something for everyone: m/f, f/f, bondage, spanking, SANTA. There isn’t any m/m, but I don’t think that is going to be a detractor for most readers. The sex was fine, fun without much eye rolling on my part, but I wouldn’t have minded a longer book with more branching from choices. For what this is though, it’s pretty fantastic, I’d definitely tell any of my romance-loving friends to check it out.

M: Excellent idea, could have had some better writing. But I feel like you don’t pick something like this up for quality. It’s like something you’d buy at Spencer’s. And look at these chapters! Solid C+ for novelty.