Book Review

Review: A Million Guilty Pleasures & A Million Guilty Secrets: A Million Dollar Duet by CL Parker

D

Title: A Million Dirty Secrets & A Million Guilty Pleasures: A Million Dollar Duet
Author: PL Parker
Publication Info: Bantam 2014
ISBN: 978-0345548764
Genre: Erotica/Erotic Romance

Book A Million Dirty Secrets - close up of a diamond on a blue backgroundBook A Million Guilty Pleasures This is PpyaJunebug’s fault.  She’s the one who said there was a 50 Shades knock off coming out and that I haaaaaaad to read it. Little did I know that it was a duology and that it was basically the most derivative thing I’ve ever read.

Yeah.  But don’t worry, it is tooooooootally on the up and up. 

First off, pretty much everyone who sells themselves in this place as doing so with full consent- I mean, some of the women are doing it because they owe money to the guy who runs the place, but hey, they have a choice to sell themselves or something else, so that’s totally consensual, right?

Also, she signed a contract that will OF COURSE be honored and protect her. 

Lainie is bought for $2 million by Noah Crawford, a rich billionare who is unable to cope with finding and maintaining a relationship since he found his best friend and business partner balls-deep in his (Noah’s) then-girlfriend’s ass.  But the man has NEEDS, you know?  And his needs include people not talking about how he’s fucking hookers.  He needs ONE woman who won’t talk and is lean and hasn’t been tainted by other, you know, MEN.  How better to deal with this problem set than by buying a virgin at a shady-as-fuck-auction?

So he does, and then he’s shocked –SHOCKED- when he shoves his dick in her mouth, and his brand new, 2 million dollar, verified virgin has never given a blow job before.  But he does get all smug that he gets to be the one to teach her how to fuck like a pro, so…. Yay? 

Lanie, on the other hand, just acts pissy with him.  Like, she sold herself to this guy, and she hates someone who would be so skeevy as to purchase a virgin, so she mouths off to him, and is generally a huge brat.  Instead of an Inner Goddess, however, she has a Double Agent Coochie, who looooooves Noah and especially loves Noah’s dick. 

So she can’t stay, like, MAD-mad as long as Double Agent Coochie needs the D. 

As an example, Noah takes her shopping for underwear, and when they get there, Lanie discovers that the shop is owned by an old flame of Noah’s and she has a huge snit fit and storms out. Noah tells his ex to pick out what she knows he likes, and when the box arrives, Lanie sets it on fire.  In the driveway, to be sure, but she sets it ON FIRE.

So, naturally, Lanie and Noah fall in love within two weeks. 

Through it all, Noah has been trying to not think about who this girl IS, but then his curiosity gets the better of him, and he hires a private investigator to find out what her deal is, and when he finds out she needed to money for her mother, he breaks it off and sends her home. 

That’s where Million Dirty Secrets ends and Million Guilty Pleasures picks up.  We get another point of view character, in the name of Noah’s former BFF and current business partner, thinking about how he wants control of the company they own and how much he wants to fuck Lanie purely because he deserves to and also it would make Noah SO MAD.  I’ve seen more nuanced villains in Super Mario Brothers games. 

The BFF is also in business with the guy who ran the auction, so he finds out where Lanie came from, and plans a take over using that information, and also offers for Lanie to get to fuck him and fuck Noah over.  When she turns him down, he tries to rape her, because what we have here is a villain made of tissue paper.  Noah comes in at the last minute, beats the shit out of him, blah blah blah. 

(Oh, Noah’s uncle is the best cardiac surgeon in the world, and Noah puts him on the case of Lanie’s mother, they magic up a heart donor – don’t ask how, I didn’t – and she’s released from he hospital after a heart transplant within ten days.  That seems a little fast to me, but I guess Plot Obstacle Heart Transplants heal faster?)

So.  The BFF calls a meeting of the board, but his father gets to him first, and Noah confesses that he did, in fact, buy a virgin, and the old man is like, “Boys will be boys” and I rolled my eyes SO HARD.

So they get married, because that is what you do when your Coochie can’t do anything but think about the Magic Peen (yup) and the Ridonkabutt (yes, really), and there’s been no character development to sustain the idea that you require anything else to sustain a relationship, so why not? 

Whatever.  I mean, everyone likes Lanie. Noah’s driver says, when Lanie is at her mother’s hospital bed, “I guess I never realized the effect the little gal had on so many lives.”  I don’t even know what that means. 

Basically, this is 18 kinds of ridiculous, with super boring sex (and so much of it!).  The writing is trying so hard to be clever, and it’s not, really.  There’s a super awkward scene with Lanie and her post-operative mother talking about the size of Noah’s dick, and some spy shenanigans and a Double Agent Coochie.  I can’t even.

Plus the amount of slut shaming that happens is ridiculous. Lanie’s BFF is a slut that’ll fuck any man that moves, and Lanie really thinks awful things about her- like why are you friends with this person if you think she’s such a giant slutmonster?

It’s BORING, is what it is.  There’s NO character development. There’s no exploration of what would make a girl fall in love with the guy THAT BOUGHT HER (beyond his giant magic dick), or what, beyond “I need to get laid,” would make a reasonably upstanding guy buy a virgin to fuck him for two years (or what makes her think that she would be released after two years).  There’s just being told that is what is happening and that’s it.  We’re shown NOTHING.  This is a clear attempt to capitalize on the 50 Shades effect, and it’s SO BAD.


A Million Dirty Secrets is available from Goodreads | Amazon | BN | Sony | Kobo | All Romance eBooks.

A Million Guilty Pleasures is available from Goodreads | Amazon | BN | Sony | Kobo | All Romance eBooks.

Comments are Closed

  1. 1
    lioness says:

    by every god above and below, I’m surprised this didn’t earn a straight-up F!

    I almost want to say it’s a parody. It should be a parody. It’s not a parody, is it?

    I have no words.

  2. 2
    Sarah Winter says:

    Well, that sounds horrifying. But then again, a 50 Shades knockoff would have put me off before I’d even started. I’m the Sin Eater of my group of friends, the one who reads complete dog crap literature and I would have cast this a wide berth. Scary.

  3. 3
    Sarita says:

    So if 50 Shades is a knock off of Twilight, does that make this Twilight cubed? At which exponent does reading the text aloud in front of a mirror in a darkened room open a portal to a dimension made up entirely of diamond dust glued together with sexism?

  4. 4
    Tam B. says:

    “I’ve seen more nuanced villains in Super Mario Brothers games.”

    I’m sorry that you had to endure what I’m sure are books you’d like brain-bleach to forget.  But I love your review.  I have no doubt it is better than the books themselves.

    Sarah really needs to tell us where we can send the Godiva and wine to help you with your pain.

    @ Sarita
    If that portal was opening to a dimension anywhere else (because anywhere would have to be an improvement) I’d totally try that just to find out. :-)

  5. 5
    cotterpinx says:

    That moment when the main character of an erotica book has the same (nick)name as your plot-moppet-aged daughter.

    Talk about needing brain bleach! >_<

  6. 6
    Dora says:

    I don’t know what it is, but irrational jealousy fits are one of the quickest ways for me to immediately lose sympathy for a character, and SETTING SOMETHING ON FIRE because it comes from your lover’s ex’s shop is about as RUN, BRO, RUN as it gets. I don’t find it wild and passionate, I find it a sign of “hide your pet rabbit” instability. I know a lot of people enjoy it from a possessiveness angle, it’s just not for me.

  7. 7
    Leigh says:

    “I’ve seen more nuanced villains in Super Mario Brothers games.”

    *SNORT*

    The heart transplant thing might be the only accurate part of the book. You typically get to go home 10 to 12 days after a transplant, so at least the author got that right.

  8. 8
    ppyajunebug says:

    I should be sorry

    But I’m not

    NOT AT ALL

  9. 9
    Ceilidh says:

    I’m not laughing at your pain.

    I’m also about 90% sure this was at some point in history actually Twilight fan-fic.

  10. 10
    Cordy says:

    Ugh. I have such a pet gripe about female characters who act bratty. I don’t know if this is primarily an age-linked thing – like maybe this seems more appealing to very young readers, you know, “Look, she’s powerful! She’s mouthing off to him!” – but it’s just an immediate death by Did Not Finish to me.

    Weirdly, I would probably read a book about a desperate 20-something virgin who auctions herself off to a weird billionaire, if the rest of the book was about them carefully negotiating their sexual relationship, and then the woman realizes that in spite of her plan to be totally businesslike about the whole thing, she is slowly coming to like him.

    But nobody ever seems to write that. Instead it’s like one long pout-fest, until I wish that the billionaire would just be like “You know what? You are not worth two million dollars. You are a jerk. I was trying to enter into a professional relationship with a professional, and you are whiny and weird and a huge hassle. This is worse than having a girlfriend, which is what I was trying to avoid. GTFO!”

  11. 11
    Dread Pirate Rachel says:

    Cordy said,

    I don’t know if this is primarily an age-linked thing – like maybe this seems more appealing to very young readers, you know, “Look, she’s powerful! She’s mouthing off to him!”

    It’s characters like this who get labeled “feisty,” which is near the top of my most-hated-words list (yeah, I have one). And this is exactly why I hate that word; it has become a sort of shorthand for Strong Female Character,™ except that it shows no real strength, nor does it instill admiration, nor does it show any kind of character depth except brattiness. Mouthing off to show independence is a teenybopper thing to do, and when I encounter an adult (real or fictitious) who engages in that kind of “Fuck-you-I-do-what-I-want” behavior, I just wonder why their emotional growth ceased at the age of fifteen. 

    Also,

    Noah tells his ex to pick out what she knows he likes, and when the box arrives, Lanie sets it on fire.  In the driveway, to be sure, but she sets it ON FIRE.

    Run for your life, Noah!

  12. 12
    Emily A. says:

    My theory about mouthing off is that in most books it supposed to make the heroine seem independent since the hero is a CONTROLLING ASShat who is going to dictate everything and kick their heroine (figuratively) into doing whatever he wants regardless of her wishes, fears, desires, even her morals and values. The mouthing off is way to make her not seem like a doormat. The same way teenagers who mouth off really do feel like their parents are making all of their choices. I blame the hero and the writer more than the heroine and possibly our culture is at fault. If we continuously write love stories where the heroine is a child and the hero an adult then we will continue to have mouthy heroines.
    Personally I once reviewed a book I hated when they complained the heroine was mouthy. I felt it was infantilizing which bothered me than heroine’s mouthy behavior. I personally think mouthing off is perfectly legit way to treat someone who is being unkind towards you.

    Off topic this is a great review, and redheadedgirl thanks for reading this drivel.
    I also like Sarita’s theory.

  13. 13
    Bitchie says:

    @Ceilidh, this was Twific, but I can’t remember which came first, this one, or what Fifty shades started out as. So no wonder they share so much common ground!

  14. 14
    Sarita says:

    @Emily A.
    Thanks ;)

    @Tam B.
    Man, now that’s got me thinking how cool it would be if you could actually open portals by using books. Actually, wasn’t that the plot of a fantasy novel once? I can’t remember…

    @Dread Pirate Rachel
    Word on the ‘feisty’ thing. I tend to take that as code for “needlessly combative all the time, which we hope you’ll mistake for strong/independent.”

  15. 15
    SB Sarah says:

    @Sarita & Dread Pirate Rachel:

    Word on the ‘feisty’ thing. I tend to take that as code for “needlessly combative all the time, which we hope you’ll mistake for strong/independent.”

    Oh, yes. “Feisty” is very often short-tempered verbal stupidity dressed up to look like a stronger-than-usual adult backbone, which it’s not. It’s all bark and no backbone at all.

  16. 16
    astrakhan says:

    If you imagine the Dick and Coochie as being “Me And My Dick”-style genitalia people, the review gets even funnier.

  17. 17
    pet says:

    Thank you for the warning.

  18. 18
    chacha1 says:

    I’m not certain it’s the only one that’s done this, but Jim C. Hines’ recent “Libriomancer” features opening portals by using books.  It’s great btw.

    These books sound 100% shite.  Thank you for the hilarious review.  :-)

  19. 19
    Blue says:

    Weirdly, I would probably read a book about a desperate 20-something virgin who auctions herself off to a weird billionaire, if the rest of the book was about them carefully negotiating their sexual relationship, and then the woman realizes that in spite of her plan to be totally businesslike about the whole thing, she is slowly coming to like him.

    @Cordy, you should check out Courtney Milan’s Unraveled. Very much the same trope but well written (IMHO).

Comments are closed.

↑ Back to Top