Rating: 3 stars

So I had a hard time rating this one. I was contacted by the fabulous author K.D. McLean and she wanted to introduce me to Rachel Collins, a 36 year old journalist who has been having a hard time finding a good man after her divorce. I was a little leery at first. This book started out a little slow and I had a love-hate relationship with the main characters, Rachel and Michael.

With Rachel, I didn’t like her at all for the first half of the book because I felt she was too naive and for some reason that bothered me. I feel that by the age of 36 you are beyond thinking love is all rainbows and ponies, and for the first half of the book, that’s how I felt Rachel’s image of her relationship with Michael was. For example, she fell victim to classic girl denial –  when he rejected her advances, she told herself that it was because he loved her and this was all in the first month of them dating. Really? I expected a little more from you Rachel, heck I want you to be better than that.

However, it seems that through her interactions with Michael and Annik (who is fabulous and I love and cannot wait to read her story), she seemed to mature and grow up in a sense. And by the end of the book, she was the woman I really wanted her to be – a woman with a backbone that was not afraid to speak her mind, ask for what she wanted and settled for nothing less. I loved her by the end of this book, even though she keeps referring to her vagina as a Tinderbox, please stop Rachel!

And now on to Michael. I had the opposite reaction to Michael as I did towards Rachel. I liked Michael a lot at first, then I slowly began to hate him, but by the end I liked him again. Michael is a mess of a forty-something man who has lived his bachelor life without emotions. I feel like he behaved like most fictional men do when they meet a woman that’s different – he freaked out and acted like a grade A a$$. However, he totally redeemed himself by the end of the book. I liked Michael, but I didn’t love him.

Now on to the rest of the book. I think this whole idea of Pandora’s is fascinating and I found myself wanting more of the story set at this club. I’m actually really excited that Ms. McLean is going to be writing books 2 and 3 and I hope they are set more in the club. I think this was one of my favorite parts of the book.

This book sort of deals with BDSM, but not really. Michael calls himself Rachel’s Dom but he’s not really. Rachel calls herself his subbie, but she’s not really a submissive. I think this is more of a PG-13 BDSM story, which isn’t a bad thing! It’s actually kind of nice to read a different view on the BDSM world.

I think the one thing I would change about this book to elevate it to a 4 star status (in addition to Rachel stop using the word Tinderbox) is if the book was told in alternating POVs. The story was told in 3rd person POV, but there were a lot of times where the reader would get a lot of italicized internal thoughts from one of the characters. I would have much rather the story to have been told in alternating first person point of views, since all the italicized thoughts annoyed me a bit, but that is just my personal opinion.

Overall, I enjoyed this book as I got into it. I think by the time I was into the last half of the book it really picked up for me and kept me interested. I definitely think its worth a read if you are looking for a book about people out of their twenties with real jobs, but who aren’t millionaires. It is unlike a lot of the books out there in this genre and I think you will enjoy it once you give it a chance.

Click to Purchase The Story of Rachel (Tales of Pandora) on Amazon

*I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.