Friday, March 1, 2013

Spanking Stories Book Club: To Love A Woman

It's March and that means it's time to move on to our next book selection, To Love A Woman by Jade Cary. 

Here's the blurb: Marissa Harrison is a beautiful 52-year old widow, writer and mother of two grown children. At a surprise party for her daughter she is introduced to Keaton Ross, an attorney at her son’s firm. Believing that her son intends Keaton for his sister, Marissa is shocked to learn that Keaton has eyes for only one woman—Marissa.

As Keaton and Marissa grow closer, Marissa can only see the damage this relationship will have on their families—a relationship with a man 22 years her junior. But Keaton Ross is a man who is not easily denied, and Marissa finds that, regardless of the repercussions, she, too, cannot be denied. Keaton Ross is a dominant man who does not take no for an answer, and he pursues Marissa with a vengeance. He brings out a sexual side to her she never knew existed, and she thrives on his dominance—craves it, in fact. As their relationship grows more intense, Marissa begins to believe that they can have a future--until one indiscreet moment threatens to destroy everything.

Can this December-May relationship survive, or will Marissa’s fear of judgment and repercussions keep her from the happiness she seeks?

Since we're just getting started, let's talk about some preliminary matters, so to speak. 

First, what are your thoughts on the age difference between the characters? 

In general what do you think of older woman/younger man romances? Is there an age that is too old or too young? 

Is this a cougar story? To me, I think of a cougar as an older woman who is the aggressor in the relationship but here it sounds like Marissa is hesitant. What do you think? 

Looking forward to digging into this book and to hearing your thoughts on it. 


  1. Hi,

    A very good friend of mine in the vanilla world is a beautiful woman who is married to a man who is about 14 years younger. They have a wonderful marriage. My son had a 40 year old male coach who married the mother of one of his team mates. The age difference was at least 16 years.

    Neither of the two women were cougars, they just fell in love with someone who also loved them.

    In both of these case, the men were mature and did not want children so it worked well.


    PS Underwear Probation was really, really HOT. I wrote a review on Amazon for it.

    1. Thanks Joey! I think that maturity has a lot to do with it. When I taught at a college I had people say to me "oh, all those hot college guys" and I'd think "yuck, they are all a bunch of pinheads"...ok, maybe I did notice a couple of them, but they were the smart ones.

      THANK YOU so much for the review of Underwear Probation. I'm glad you enjoyed it. I'm revisiting Reece and Daisy in Reconnecting, which is part of the anthology Coming to Terms that will be out in May. It's not nearly as sexy as UP but I think it delves a bit more into their relationship.

  2. I have to say that (while I wouldn't necessarily say, "Yay, a cougar story!") this aspect of the story was my favorite part. Though I must say it's probably because of how it's written. I won't say too much because not everyone has read the book yet, but the intro parts are my favorite of the book.

    In real life, as long as people are adults they can do whatever they want. Biologically it does make sense for an older woman to be with a younger man, since women tend to live longer. :)

    1. Live longer....unless they wear themselves out w/all the hot sex w/the younger guy...but what a way to go.

  3. I'm about 40 percent into this book. It's not often you get to read about mature heroines and it's refreshing. In real life, I think if you can find love, you should grab it, although a large age difference either way (whether it's the man or woman who is significantly older)creates challenges that will need to be addressed. Parenting issues. Retirement. Body issues. Health issues.

    I researched cougar relationships (because in one of my books, I have a older heroine/younger hero) It's usually the younger man who approaches the older woman, and has to work to convince her to pursue the relationship. The notion of an older woman targeting young man is more fiction than fact.

    The idea that someone young and hot finds you attractive can be huge boost in self-esteem.

    1. Good point, Cara, about the younger man usually being the pursuer. When I was using online dating a few years ago I had a couple of much younger men contact me and when I said "did you notice that I'm much older than you" they mentioned that they liked older women because they know what they want in bed and go for it.

      I agree about the real life issues that need to be addressed in a long term relationship. I have a friend who married a man who is the same age as my mother. When they were 25/45 it was ok, but now that they are 40/60, there seem to be some issues. But that might just be them.

  4. There is another factor in the evolving "Cougar" type romance in that the sexual peak for women is much later than the man. It would be interesting and provocative to have the characters meet and pursue their relationship at the height of their own eros filled sensuality and lust. Imagining the unquenchable thirst for each other here. Liking this book so far, about one-third into this and loving the Dominance...

    1. Very true about sexual peak.

      I've read about the same amount of the book too and I agree about the dominance. Can't wait to see what happens next.

    2. I have to agree with this. I just get hornier and hornier as the years go by. I keep thinking-- what did I waste my 20's doing? I should've had more sex! ha.

  5. I suppose there's a feel that goes with the Cougar persona. I assumed this was a cougar book simply because the heroine is older until you asked the question and made me think about it. I agree that a cougar is when the older woman is the aggressor, which she is not, so in this case, I would not label this is a cougar book.

    This is my first book with an older heroine/younger hero but it seems I'm reading all kinds of new stuff these days. I'm definitely drawn to books where the hero is older but perhaps that will change for me over time as well. I watched a show the other day where the women were much older than the men they were married to and I think Cara's point about physical changes is important especially after the initial 'in love' phase wears off, but at the end of they day, we're drawn to each other for a reason and I think that has to do with the soul. I'm not getting wishy washy here :) , I'm talking about meeting again in new lives.

  6. I loved the start of this story, and don't think there is a big problem with age difference in romance stories.
    Then again, if we are talking about a 70 year old and a 18 year old, that sounds more like a "sugar daddy" ( or mama), and it would be hard for me to get into their romantic interludes. But in real life, to each their own.

    I agree that this is not a cougar story, since the younger man is the aggressor. It also should be accepted a bit easier, since she is not playing the part of cradle robber hurting the poor young man. Society does not seem to appreciate the older woman, and deems it more acceptable for the man to be older, unfortunately. Though an exception has been made for Hugh Jackman. Tom Cruise, on the other hand, was ostracized for his marriage to Katie Holmes. I think the difference was the strength in each person. Since Katie seemed so young and vulnerable, it did not go over well. (And let's not forget, Hugh can actually act. :) )

    With that being said, I LOVE stories with dominant men, and will accept any age over 18. :)
    I can't wait to see the finished project.
    Great questions, Celeste!

  7. I think this was the first book I read that has an older woman/younger man. Usually it is the other way around. I don't think this is a cougar book either because Marissa is not pursuing the relationship. Age means nothing to me, if two people are in love so be it. I have read the entire book and don't want to give anything away, but Keaton is so well written and his character is so mature.

  8. To Love A Woman was also my first older heroine/younger hero romance. Honestly, I usually go for the reverse - younger heroine/older hero. But it really worked for me because I loved Keaton's character and how persistent he is in going after Marissa. Great book!

  9. First of all, thank you, Celeste, for sharing To Love a Woman in your book club.

    I, too, am a fan of the older man/younger woman story, but this one came to me pretty organically. My nephew, many years ago, worked with a woman, and they became good friends. The woman kept trying to fix him up with her daughter. He finally said, 'I don't want her, I want you.' She was 18 years older than he.

    I wrote the character of Marissa Harrison as a woman who had a full life: two grown kids, a handsome, attentive lover, good friends, a successful writing career...she did not need Keaton. There was no desperation here for her, so she was free to take on his advances, or reject them, and her life would go on. That he was skilled as a lover, as a dominant, and he had the confidence of a man far older is what attracted Marissa. These are the things she did not have in Vito, her lover. While he was comfortable, and he seemed a good lover, he was not Keaton.

    Keaton offered adventure, and he was most definitely of age--30 to her 52. He has a successful career of his short, they don't NEED each other, which is the death of eroticism. They desperately WANT each other, and the age difference adds a spark that neither had with another before they met.

    I think his dominance, most of all, is what convinced Marissa that Keaton could handle both her and a relationship, and that is what I wanted to put across to the reader. Can these two SUSTAIN? I think the answer is yes.

  10. That's what I think I will like about the book. In a lot of the spanking romances I read (and have plotted out myself), one of the characters needs the other for something. It could be affirmation, protection, guidance, etc.. The need is still there.
    I like the idea of main characters being strong enough to handle their own lives, and focusing mainly on their wants. And the trials from their age difference, will create plenty of tension. :)

  11. When I read this book I didn't think I would like the younger man vs. older woman aspect. I thought to have a strong alpha hero, you would need him to be older so he could be dominant enough.
    I was wrong. This book opened my eyes. Bottom line, it was written so deliciously well. Loved it.

  12. If I want tight skin, I'll bang a drum. Personal bias. I love older guys. But age discrepancy? I say love is love. If I fall in love with highly sexualized and energetic body-perfect braniac of 18 when I'm in my dotage, I'll open that door.


  13. Yes, the bottom line really is...compatibility. What I wanted to show in TLAW was the idea that Keaton brought something different to the table, AND he wouldn't take no for an answer. Marissa is comfortable in her life, so when Keaton invites her to lunch, and Marissa thinks it's so Keaton can discuss her daughter, she is floored when she realizes Keaton wants her. Now the doubts kick in...'he's too young for me...he's not sincere...he doesn't know what he wants...' and of course she discovers very quickly that none of that is true where Keaton Ross is concerned. And once she lets him in just a little bit, she finds they are quite compatible. I have always preferred older men, but now that I'm older it isn't about age anymore, it's about all that other stuff we look for that has nothing to do with age, and Keaton has that. I wanted to show that it was possible. I'm really very fond of these two.


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