June 4, 2013

Spotlight on: Undressed by Avery Aster

The Manhattanites Book 1
Avery Aster

Genre: Contemporary Erotic Romance
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave
Date of Publication: February 2013
ISBN: 9781419940736
Number of pages: 257
Word Count: 76,862
Cover Artist: Syneca Featherstone

Amazon   BN    Kobo   ARe  Ellora’s Cave

Book Description:
Avery Aster literally writes highly erotic literature — Midwest Book Review

Content Warning: due to graphic sex scenes, strong language, suggestive themes, mature humor, and just about everything your mother ever told you not to do--including wearing a see-through dress, this novel is for adults only.

Milan's notorious playboy, Massimo Tittoni, seems to have everything—Lamborghinis, exotic women, palaces throughout Europe and business success. Ramping up his fabric company to go global with a new apparel brand, he ruthlessly stops supplying fabrics to the American client who inspired the collection. But once they meet, what's he willing to give to get her in his bed? 

Upper East Side designer Lex Easton will be damned if she'll let an Italian stud muffin knock her down. So what if she named her favorite vibrator after him. With Fashion Week approaching, she'll do whatever it takes to secure the fabrics she needs to become the next Diane von Furstenburg—even sleep with her rival. But when she arrives in Europe the paparazzi chronicles her every move and she finds herself in a situation never imagined. Lex’s Louboutins stilettos are dug in deep to win this war. All’s fair in love and fashion! 

Avery Aster's super-glossy debut novel is loaded with passionate escapism, pitting American ambition against Italian tradition. Erotic romance fans who appreciate extended sex scenes, witty banter and glamour mustn't miss Undressed. 

Inside Scoop: Though the hero and heroine remain monogamous, their Prada-wearing friends indulge in a ménage a trois and other fashionable sexual fun and games. 

Review copy on Edelweiss 

Book Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HMlPay2nqgA 

Articles on Undressed: 
1.)    Learn what inspired The Manhattanites series from Avery Aster in USA TODAY:


2.)    Midwest Book Review on Undressed and why this novel isn’t for erotic newbies: 

3.)    25 Smutty New Yorker Insights Revealed After Reading Undressed. 
Cupping her hands around her eyes, she pressed her face to the window to see a tiny cockpit. “Where’s the pilot?”

“Right here.” He held out the keys, walking around the plane’s right side, smirking, and posing as Indiana Jones on the last crusade. She hoped they weren’t heading toward the Temple of Doom. Massimo rivaled Mr. Jones in hotness, she prayed not in adventure.

“Do you have a pilot’s license?” she asked, unsure if they taught aviation at The Royal Millionaire Playboy Academy.

, signorina.” He shook his head poking fun at her.

“I’m serious. Show me your license please?” Lex held on to the plane’s door as if it were a gate to hell. Christian Dior, get me outta here.

Massimo closed the distance between them in response. “Give me your hand.” Not waiting for her to respond, he grabbed her mitts from the door. “Bella, you are shaking,” he noticed and secured his fingers around hers, massaging her palm into his.

Strong hands. “You may call me Lex, not Bella. This isn’t Twilight.” She didn’t care for paranormal.

Undressed (The Manhattanites, #1)Undressed by Avery Aster

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Oh, where to start with this review? I guess I should start by stating the obvious...Undressed is a very sexy erotic book about a high class Manhattan fashion designer that has to jet off to Italy to track down a Prince who has held up her shipment of must-have fabrics.

I really loved the idea behind the plot of this story. It was focused on two entirely different but very interesting worlds: that of a New York fashion designer, and of a Italian billionaire Prince. It was really fun to read about how foreign royalty lives, and Massimo was the perfect character to portray this. It was all totally believable, and Avery Aster came across as someone who knows what she's writing about. The same with Lex and her world. I love the world of high fashion, and while I don't know the ins and outs of it, I was able to believe that Lex did. I appreciated that level of believability.

I also was a fan of how even though Massimo and Lex seem from the outside to have been born with silver spoons in their mouths, and have had everything just handed to them since birth, that was not the case at all. Lex has been fighting bankruptcy tooth and nail ever since her rock and roll father died and left her and her mom up to their eyeballs in debt. She built her fashion empire, Easton Essentials, from the ground up. And if it wasn't for her momma constantly spending their profits on wacky stuff like psychics, Lex would be a success. However, she is counting on the shipment of fabric from Massimo to put together her new looks for New York Fashion week because she needs orders. If she is unable to put on a show, and in turn not take purchase orders, she will have to file bankruptcy and shut down her brand. Massimo, on the other hand, may be a royal Prince, but he has had his own fair share of hard times. His father practically disowned him and left the family fortune to Massimo's illegitimate half-sister - meaning that Massimo had to build Girasoli textiles on his own merit and hard work. Lex and Massimo definitely are both driven to be successful and determined to see their businesses succeed no matter the cost.

A couple other pluses for me about this story were the supporting characters, the fast pace of the story, and the fact that Massimo and Lex didn't fall into insta-love. Maybe insta-lust, but that was pretty believable. As for the supporting characters, I loved Jemma, Taddy, Blake and Vive. They all had such overbearing, hilarious personalities. It really helped flesh out the story and added some laugh-out-loud moments. The pace of the story never slowed down, and I appreciated that I never felt bogged down or bored. I read this in one day, and didn't want to put it down for a minute. The insta-love problem that many stories seem to have these days wasn't a problem in this story. Lex and Massimo butted heads from page one, and even though they were hot for each other, they fought their attraction and tried to keep everything strictly business. Even when they gave in to their sexual chemistry, they still tried to keep emotion uninvolved (especially Massimo). This made it more believable, and they really had to "work" for it. I do wish that the ending would have been done a little differently. I can't say how I would have changed it exactly, but I can say that it felt a little too HEA in a fake sort of way. Knowing how Lex feels about publicity and media, I just don't see her being okay with something that major happening in that way. And I don't see her getting over her fear and distrust of the paparazzi quickly enough to make that okay.

Okay, now for what I didn't like about this book. It felt to me like a lot of the book was not edited thoroughly. The writing was good - don't get me wrong Avery Aster knows how to string a sentence together. But there were a lot of places where there was either a word missing, or too many words in the wrong place. It kind of threw off the flow of the book. I also very quickly became annoyed with Massimo's constant use of the word "bella" when referring to Lex. I get it, he's Italian. I don't need to be beat over the head with it. The sprinkling in of Italian phrases when he spoke was just enough to be interesting. The "bella" pushed it over the edge into overkill. I also wasn't a fan of the internal monologue that Massimo and Lex had going on throughout the book. It really wasn't necessary, and didn't add to the story. I prefer more of a showing vs. telling style, and it was done well enough that I didn't need the internal stuff to clarify. I was already picking up on how they felt without them "telling" me.

I really enjoyed the sex scenes in this book. They were very hot and raunchy (m/f/m and lots of dirty talk), and completely fit the bill for hard core erotica. However, there really wasn't that much of it. Especially between Lex and Massimo. I realize that it did build up the tension and there was a reason for them not having sex immediately, but still - I wanted it! I liked the push/pull dynamic they had in the bedroom. They are both control freaks and didn't want to give up the dominant position. And then there was that one scene (you know the one I'm talking about!) where I was like, "What? Is that even possible!!!???" (No, really, I want to know!)

Overall, I really liked this book. I enjoyed the characters and the settings of the book (Milan and New York). This book was hilarious, sarcastic, and sexy all wrapped up in a bow. I will definitely read book two. Now, I want to leave you with a couple of my favorite lines from the book:

***Warning! Contains explicit language not appropriate for anyone under 30... :)
Lex appreciated the woman was a screamer, riding cock, on a cruiser in the open waters for everyone on Isola di Girasoli to enjoy. Happy to see someone's gettin' it.
She imagined his strong arms holding her close and fucking the New York out of her.
Her mouth said fuck off but her body danced fuck me.
"You could have fucked me 'til your uncut, overexposed on the blogs, 'too ginormous for my snatch' pecker fell off. And I'd still no way never ever in a thousand years sell, loan, sample you my Easton. And to answer your question, I run my company with my pussy, and twenty-four other pussy-sporting employees. Easton girls do not allow dickheads or cocks in our fashion world. Period.
"I'm starting to wonder if your eye blackened from Massimo clubbing you with his Italian dick."

About the Author:
AVERY ASTER pens erotic romance for Ellora's Cave. As a resident of New York's Upper East Side and a graduate from New York University, Avery gives readers an inside look at the city's glitzy nightlife, socialite sexcapades and tall tales of the über-rich and ultra-famous. "I write about what I see in my metropolis that never sleeps—Manhattanites on the quest for a passionate thrill," Avery says. "By and large, my characters are drop-dead gorgeous, ripped straight from the headlines and on the hunt for their next conquest."

UNDRESSED launched The Manhattanites series, exploring people's forbidden desires of lust and longing. When Avery's star-studded cast unites it always feels like forever and everyone has a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

THE MANHATTANITES is an erotic romance series of full length novels focusing on relationships. Each book may be read as a stand alone. If you've enjoyed TV shows like Girls (HBO), Dallas (TNT), and The Bold & the Beautiful (CBS) then you'll love The Manhattanites series. Avery's characters are over the top. They have raunchy sex, speak their minds and always get what they want.

Twitter: @averyaster


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