Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Book Tour for Queen of Clubs: Cora by Katie de Long (Review & GIVEAWAY)

I enjoy gritty and steamy stories and this start to a new series definitely promises all this and more.  Keep reading to get a tantalizing taste of Queen of Clubs: Cora by Katie de Long, along with my impressions of it.  Learn why readers are drawn to erotica and the sensual world of stripping from Ms. de Long and learn even more about this novella by visiting the other blogs hosting this tour.  Make sure to fill out the form below for the chance to win a signed print copy of this book and a swag pendant too!

Everyone needs a release, and sex workers often interact or own their sexuality in ways that non sex workers are generally stigmatized from. It's the same kind of escapism that also encourages us to fixate on billionaire alphas, private detectives, sports stars, and musicians. It's a work environment in which you expect to encounter things that you would never see at an office or a corporate headquarters, and fiction lives by strong settings.
Unfortunately, too, it gives a lot of people an opportunity to confirm their views about these workers. Billionaire erotica doesn't make you think every dude on the Forbes 100 is Christian Gray, but the narratives around sex work are often negative and tie into a real stigma that these workers face. They tie into a lot of ideas about the fetishization of women's pain, the danger of women's sexuality and indulging it, a desire to return to the good old days when women looked pretty for their men and the men were on top, ideas about women demanding money, particularly from their partners, fears about homewreckers and gold diggers, perceptions about class, perceptions about abuse survivors (for instance, the all strippers were sexually abused one), and mental illness.
And for me, personally, I've found the narratives for these archetypes flawed, and I wanted to strive to create something that subverted a lot of these narratives, and formed romance stories around these women beyond the mainstream stories many people tell. I find them fascinating because they encourage us to examine a lot of ideas around individuals' agency, monogamy, systemic racism, sexism, or violence. I chose to work on Queen of Clubs because it provided a perfect framework for that, exploring as many different narratives as I could through different characters' novellas. And it's gotten a lot bigger than I anticipated, with spinoffs including a planned thriller-esque series centered around a high end sex worker, another about a private investigator who often deals with sexuality-related cases, and another one exactly like Queen of Clubs, in format, but centered around the nude modeling industry.

The exotic dancers and employees of the Queen of Clubs walk a fine line, with only wits, beauty, and market savvy to keep them from toppling into the shark pit. Ride shotgun through lapdances, romance, and sexual awakenings. Don't worry, these girls won't ask what your hands are doing under the tip rail.
Cora, an adventurous student, finds herself auditioning for a stripping gig...and it comes with more than the asking price, including a very attractive DJ.


I steeled myself, and tapped his shoulder. He jumped, his elbow knocking me back against the wall as he tumbled off the stool into me. In my platforms, I barely kept my footing. I had practiced walking in them for two hours after I bought them, and I had to guess that practice was the only reason I was still on my feet.
“Shit, shit, sorry. Are you okay?” He looked up at me as he got his feet back under him, and prepared to stand. His head was entirely too close to my hips in the tiny space, and I chuckled, imagining him as a giant spider preparing to tie me up. I loved awkward guys. Guys with rough edges, who were interesting to look at not because they were beautiful, but because they were unique. Under other circumstances, Kirk would have been right up my alley. Maybe literally in an alley.


***Queen of Clubs is currently published monthly. Visit for preorder and purchase links, or sign up for the mailing list, to be notified when new titles are available.


As a reader who likes her romances steamy I found this one the perfect fit as it wrapped me in a sensual blanket from the first page to the last.  It's an unconventional read though dealing with the empowerment of a woman through acceptance of her body in a world where looks are valued above all else.  It's not a straight-forward romance, but Cora's choice in mixing business with pleasure furthers her empowerment as she finds a man who understands her wholeheartedly.  Their connection is one of acceptance, non-judgemental, and sweet in the early stages of getting to know one another.  It's also teeming with sensuality with the sexual tension growing stronger the more intimate they become amidst lap dances and pieces of Oreo pie.

Cora and Kirk are memorable with strong and open-minded beliefs and their compatibility is clear.  Cora knew from an early age that her body was something to be on display instead of hidden.  Her mother's views were oppressive but Cora remained strong-willed and is now a woman who goes after what she wants, trusting in herself.  Kirk sees many gorgeous women every day but has never wanted to be with one outside of the club.  He's a genuinely nice guy and I found him utterly delightful.  They connect on many levels and he always lets her know she's got the power which made for an insta-love bond that felt believable.  Their interactions were sweet and playful but quickly morphed into a steamy encounter that left me parched.  The club environment is vividly depicted with the rules made clear and a brief glimpse of the denizens that made everything seem more real.  While there's no definitive conclusion here, since this is a serialized set of stories, there's definite joy between Cora and Kirk with their feelings quite clear with hope for their future.  I look forward to more sensual stories being told as we dig even deeper into this gritty world as Ms. de Long has whetted my appetite through this tantalizing tale.

My rating for this is a B.

*I got this book from the author for review in exchange for my honest opinion.


Katie de Long lives in the Pacific northwest, realizing her dream of being a crazy cat-lady. As a kid, Katie flagged the fade-to-blacks in every adult book she encountered, and when she began writing, she vowed to use cutaways sparingly. After all, that's when the good stuff happens. And on a kindle, no one asks why there's so many bookmarks in her library.



a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Thanks for reading! I really enjoyed talking to you.
    Love and lapdances!

  2. I love the blurb. Sounds like a great book

    1. Glad it intrigued, Teresa. I hope you give it a try!
      Love and Lapdances!

  3. I enjoyed reading the excerpt. Thank you for the giveaway.

    1. I'm glad you enjoyed it, John. Good luck!
      Love and lapdances!

  4. Replies
    1. It was a great conversation, Mary. I'm glad it gave you some stuff to think about.
      Love and lapdances!