Warm, by nature cheerful, dental receptionist Alice Waterman finds herself desperately in need of money when her mother is taken seriously ill. Reluctantly she signs on with Velvet Whispers, a sophisticated phone-sex business that entertains its wealthy male clientele with naughty talk and steamy erotic tales for a hefty fee, and for the first time confronts desires and a sensuality that, she begins to realize, lies beyond talk.
I saw this cover on my book swap site and liked it right away. It hinted at erotica but not in that obvious way you find so often.
Basically this is a story of a woman who, while working for a phone sex line – however in a rather sophisticated way –, discovers her own sexuality. Alice is more of a Scheherazade than engaging into direct phone sex with her customer. She is hired for her talents to tell stories and this is what she does on the phone. She invents erotic stories and tells them to her customers. The stories’ nature evolve from rather innocent to kinky in the course of the book, often influenced by Alice’s adventures in real life. Alice does not all of a sudden start to have countless one night stands, mind you, she simply develops a healthy self-confidence.
I didn’t care for all the stories, but that was not to be expected. I liked the main characters who were Alice, Betsy, a colleague and friend of hers and Velvet, the owner of “Velvet Whispers”. Even the customers who remained faceless and who were only a voice on the phone, except for one, were likeable. The two men that play a bigger part in the story were so different from each other that they were a nice contrast, yet Alice was attracted to both of them.
If you like short stories that are connected by an overall story arc – if I may call it that – then this is perfect. The book does not come to any conclusion, it is simply a period in Alice’s life without a definite HEA or even HFN.
|Author||Joan Elizabeth Lloyd|
|Publisher||Carroll & Graf|
|Buy link||Buy Velvet Whispers|