NOCTURNES–Dark and Delicious–A Review

Most people would agree that alcoholism and prostitution aren’t sexy.
Yet somehow Kendall Grey turns these two vices into romance.
Nocturnes (Hard Rock Harlots, #3)

NOCTURNES is the third installment of her Hard Rock Harlots series. I adored both STRINGS and BEATS, and couldn’t wait to find out what happened to Rax–self proclaimed Guitar God and Dom Deluxe.

Back in BEATS Rax was captivated by a stripper, Lola, and in despair of losing her he drank so much he ended up with alcohol poisoning. Rax’s battle with the bottle has only increased since then. Especially now that his wingman/lover, Toombs, is exclusive with Jinx, the drummer of their band Killer Buzz Float.

As the band records what may be their breakthrough album, Rax pulls away from the happy couples–he’s sure he’ll never find a true love. Drunk and stumbling through the strip club Nocturnes, Rax spots his Lola–aka Eve Belikov.

Eve has danced since she was a child. Her parents, Russian immigrants, were killed by a drunk driver when she was twelve and left her floundering in the foster care system. As a stripper Eve is sexy and untouchable, but as an angel in Heaven, Nocturnes’ super exclusive BDSM sub-club, Eve gets touched any way her customers desire. In truth, as a reader I was appalled and disgusted–and had to remind myself that fiction is not even as strange as real-life. Somewhere in this world humans are degraded/exploited far worse than Eve was. Still, it was unsettling. And I think that’s the genius of Kendall Grey. She didn’t try to make it fun or sexy. She made it real. It was a risk. A big risk, and creatively I think it paid off–at least for me.

Eve isn’t interested in Rax. He’s a drunk mess, and she’s committed by contract to have no sexual contacts outside of Heaven. Still, in Rax she sees her own loneliness, and feels an emotional connection she has lacked since her parents died. Rax, he’ll take Lola/Eve in any capacity. Being near her stirs more than his libido–his music is richer and more soulful, kinda like the Night Music of a nocturne. His alcoholism troubles more than Eve; his bandmates stage an unsuccessful intervention.

Unable to keep seeing each other, Rax hopes for one last connection, and in the process saves Eve from a brutal attack. Rax blames himself, his drunkenness, for not preventing Eve’s disfigurement, and Eve sends him away in her shame, and also for her own peace of mind. Though, their reunion? EPIC seems too small a word.

Ms. Grey turns this Leaving Las Vegas-tale into an HEA. Much love, girl. It’s a miraculous feat.

By turns, NOCTURNES is nasty, dirty, gritty, infuriating, sad, soulful, redeeming and sexy. It takes the filthiest sow’s ear of a storyline and fashions a silk purse romance fit for FLOTUS. I highly recommend it, even if you have to read the Heaven scene with only one half-closed squinty eye, like me. NOCTURNES was nothing like I thought it would be, and everything it needed to be. Rax isn’t a sap. Eve’s hardened and jaded. The two of them have to rub all their rough edges against each other to smooth each other out. And peeling back those layers exposes the soft vulnerability that underlies a true love.

Interested? You can find NOCTURNES at Goodreads, Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Make sure to come back and let me know if you liked NOCTURNES. And, as always, keep reading my friends!


I’ve had this talk with you folks before. About Kendall Grey and her erotica genius. STRINGS was a killer read.

And, the sequel BEATS released last week?

Lightning damn well struck twice.

It is not for the tame, nor timid–though it’s not nearly as down-n-dirty as STRINGS. Mostly because Jinx isn’t one-tenth the potty-mouth-sex-fiend that Letty was.

So, what happens?

If you’ve read STRINGS, you know Killer Buzz Float drummer Jinx Hardwick has it bad for bandmate Toombs Badcock (yes, the name is significant. Lord, the things men can do to embellish their, their…things!)

Problem? Toombs comes as a package deal with another member of the band, Rax Wrathbone. Yeah. Toombs is a sub to Rax’s Dom. Poor Jinx. But, Rax has an idea. A dastardly plan to let the rather-timid-Catholic-good-girl Jinx have a piece of Toombs–all she has to do is share him with Rax.

One night, two men, no inhibitions.

Jinx would never agree to such a plan, normally. But she knows her inability to write new songs is linked to her frustration over Toombs. The band is set to record it’s first demo for the record label but Jinx’s creative block is killing their chance. She won’t get paid if she can’t contribute, and her large family is counting on some money now that Mom lost her job. With her position in Killer Buzz Float on the line if she doesn’t get her beats down, Jinx opts for this one night. It’s hot and wet and Jinx nearly steals Rax’s lovely sub Toombs away. Nearly.

He and Rax have been together for a loooong time.

The heartbreak would have Jinx looking back through her rearview if only she had a place to go. Learning Jinx’s family is on the brink of bankruptcy Rax offers another exchange. Even more nasty than the first.

Jinx will do anything to help her family. Even trade her body out to Rax. Maybe.

Good thing, right? Nope. No upsides to this plan.

And, yet, it all turns out exactly as we’d want.

I’m so glad to say that I loved this sequel. It lives up to the promise of STRINGS yet sets it’s own tone, own pace. Jinx is a fantastic POV character.  We feel the anguish she lives each day, watching her love find pleasure in others, or hearing how her family is so close to the financial brink and knowing she just can’t help. BEATS is more of a deep-tissue erotic massage than it’s big sister, STRINGS, but just as captivating.

You can find BEATS in the usual spots…

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If you pick it up, let me know your thoughts in the comments!

STRINGS is Killer

Strings (Hard Rock Harlots, #1)If Kendall Grey wrote political ads her candidates would never get elected.

She’s that brutally honest.

She is also either a complete maniac or an erotica genius.

Her novel STRINGS (Hard Rock Harlots #1) has a disclaimer that elevates an NC-17 rating to art.

You think I’m exaggerating? This is the first sentence:

STRINGS is not suitable for slut shamers, uptight stone throwers, Holier-Than-Thou prudes, humorless virgins, persons with chronic neck or back pain, pearl-clutching bitties, those who disparage crude humor or vulgarity in their many forms, closed-minded people with sticks up their asses, or anyone under the age of 18.”

It goes on for three more sentences. And Holy Goodness, is it accurate.

So…if you don’t want your delicate sensibilities obliterated by a nuclear blast of shameless lewdness, stop right now. STRINGS is NOT YOUR BOOK.

I absolutely loved it.

Letty Dillinger is bass guitarist for the female rock trio Cherry Buzz Float. Sexual inhibition is not a concept with which she is familiar. If it can be done, she done did it. Maybe twice.

‘Course, Cherry Buzz Float isn’t quite a household name, and Letty’s barely making enough as a waitress to keep herself housed. On her 25th birthday she’s half-drunk, lamenting her bad fortune, when she meets a sunglasses-wearing man she dubs ‘Shades’ willing to indulge in her wicked fantasies involving a bottle of tequila, a strap-on, and his backfield.

Yeah. She’s naughty.

This one night stand probably wouldn’t change Letty’s day-to-day except she gets a call the next day from her manager with the Good News/Bad News.

Good News: Cherry Buzz Float has been booked on a tour! Yahoo! Dream-Come-True!

Bad News: The tour headliner is Killer Dixon, a rival band who MAY have stolen a song from Cherry Buzz Float.

It isn’t until the two bands get together that Letty learns the Really Bad News: The new lead singer of Killer Dixon is–wait for it….


SHADES!!!   😉

Now all Letty has to do to live her rock dream is to keep the Shades-encounter on the down-low and maintain peace between her bandmates and Killer Dixon whilst all sharing the same tour bus for a month.

In truth, I doubt an angel could manage this supernatural feat.

And Letty ain’t no angel.

Good for us. Because the wild ride is so fraught with tension you can hear the reverb for miles.

Even better? The attraction between Letty and Shades develops it’s own zip code. And the animosity between the bands could power Alaska through the winter twilight.

Spoiler #1:  Cherry Buzz Float implodes.

Spoiler #2: Happily Ever After

If you like when a novel causes your panties to explode and are willing to accept multi-partner sexcapades (x 1) you will find the irreverent STRINGS to be a hoot. Pack some toiletries–or a wet-nap if you’re beach bound–to clean up afterwards.

Fearless readers will undoubtedly learn some new lingo to describe:  sex, naughty bits, bodily fluids, and love.

You can pick this title up for Kindle or Nook. Paperbacks are also available at online retailers.

The sequel, BEATS, slated for release August 29th. Yeah, it’s on my TBR at Goodreads.