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THE KEYHOLE SERIES BOOK 1

With a failed marriage behind her, Jill Marten was looking to start a new chapter in her life. She had no idea that running into her old friend, Jessie, would unlock a whole new world. When she accepts Jessie’s invitation to a party, in order to “try something completely different,” it awakens a need to discover her place in a new community. Jessie, also known as sunni, is a submissive slave who is in a loving relationship with her Master, Sir Rune. When Rune and sunni ask Jill to be a part of their family, Jill begins her journey into submission, bondage, and polyamory, even as she questions everything that she has been taught about love and relationships. She begins to face her own desires and fears as she struggles with feelings of jealousy, inadequacy, and self-worth. Once she opens the door to a life she never imagined, a peek through the keyhole is no longer enough, and she must learn what it means to become sage.

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When I was given the opportunity to read Kasi Alexander’s Becoming sage, her first book in The Keyhole series, I had no idea what to expect because this was my first venture into the world of BDSM and polyamory. What I discovered was an engrossing book I just couldn’t put down!

I was struck by how real the characters felt and all the time I had to keep reminding myself that these were only fictional people. Knowing that the author actually lives this alternative lifestyle, I’m sure there must be some autobiographical aspects to the book, which give it such realism. Everything is seen through Jill’s eyes and I think this helped me to really connect with her and experience everything with her on her journey to find ‘her place in the world’.

What I found really interesting was the complexity of the relationship between Sir (Rutger), sunni (Jessie) and sage (Jill), particularly as it combined both polyamory and BDSM. I accepted the idea that some people may be more suited to a polyamorous relationship rather than the traditional two-person monogamous one. But having been in a happy ‘vanilla’ relationship for nearly forty years, I had a hard job accepting the power exchange aspect. However, seeing things as Jill saw them, I could certainly understand its appeal for certain people.

I was beginning to see what attracted Jessie to the idea of belonging to someone like him (Sir). It was kind of like being a child again and having a big, strong daddy whose lap you could crawl on to, but I didn’t feel like I was giving up any part of being an adult, either. Jessie had said that being a slave didn’t entail giving up responsibility for yourself; it just meant that you could feel completely comfortable in knowing what things you were responsible for and what you could expect in return.

I also learned how important trust, commitment and honest communication were, when sunni’s jealousy threatens their whole relationship.

I admit to feeling uncomfortable when I read some of the BDSM related scenes but I did appreciate the honesty with which they were written and the way in which, through her characters, Ms Alexander explains the significance of different types of play and the nature of the pleasure derived. In the wax play scene, Sir explains to sage what he is doing is not intended to cause sunni pain but intense sensual stimulation. It was a fascinating insight into a very different world!

If you are new to the BDSM romantic genre as I was, then this is an excellent introduction and a book I can highly recommend. I would like to thank Ms Alexander for allowing me to take a peek through the keyhole and I look forward to reading further books in the series.

VERDICT:  An intensely emotional and enlightening experience

RATING: ★★★★★

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