TOP 5: Book Besties – Celebrating our Favorite Females in Modern Romance (plus a giveaway)

Celebrating our favorite females in Contemporary Romance

There’s a lot of talk about Book Boyfriends – those delicious males that keep us company in our fantasies long after we’ve closed their books… Those gorgeous guys would be nothing without the women who back them up.

Time for a little bit of Girl Power, because none of our book boyfriends are perfect – they all needed the love and support of an amazing woman to shape them into the men we know and love.

These are the fictional women I’d love to hang out with – to spend a night on the couch drinking too much wine and swapping stories. The women who prove that this genre is more than pushover virgins and shrinking violets. These women might enjoy a little power play inside of the bedroom but they are firmly in control outside of the house. They are strong, smart, funny, and their characters elevated their respective books to something infinitely more glorious just by being themselves.

Oh, and stay tuned, because we’ve decided to make a similar Top 5 List which will feature our favorite females in Paranormal Romance in the near future. Those ladies also need to be represented!

So here are my TOP FIVE Book BFFs of the moment

Genie by Kitty French
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Genie Divine
Sexually Empowered Burlesque Dancer
Role in my entourage: Group cheerleader

“Burlesque isn’t cheap, Abel, and it isn’t prostitution. It’s an age-old form of entertainment, rich in comedy and music hall tradition. It’s about striptease, illusion, art… a celebration of women. Yes, it’s suggestive. Yes, it’s sexy. But it’s not obscene, or debasing to the performer or the watchers.”

Genie is a believable, relatable, strong, smart female lead and I fell in love with her character instantly. She’s confidant and tenacious and stole my heart.

Genie is a dancer at a Burlesque Theater in London. She has an awesome attitude about burlesque, and about female sexuality in general. She truly raises her performances into an art-form… Even as Abel tries to pretend it’s something trashy. She defends her life choices, her sexuality, and her family business from the man she lusts after.

Afterburn & Aftershock by Sylvia Day

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Gianna Rossi
Independent, Driven, Business Genius
Role in my entourage: The girl you call to have your back in the boardroom

“I’d face all that and more for a guy who really loved me,” I told him coldly. “But I’m not putting up with this shit from a jerk.”

In a perfect world of literary crossovers, Gianna would be hopping from book to book slapping sense into women who lose themselves in their men… Women who are so dazzled by their alpha-male that they forget they had goals of their own…

That’s not to say that Gianna was apathetic toward her relationship with Jax. She was willing to work for it – to make compromises, but she wasn’t going to sacrifice her personality for grade-A dick.

Wallbanger by Alice Clayton

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Caroline Reynolds
Sweet and beautiful – Inside & out
Role in my entourage: The hostess, we meet at her place because she always has a kitchen full of baked goods.

“Now you listen here, mister,” I said, trying for a more adult tone. “I’m not going to spend every night listening to you try to crash you girl’s head through my wall with the force of your dick alone!”

The first time I met Caroline Reynolds in Wallbanger, I laughed ’till I cried. She surrounds herself with amazing girlfriends who all support each other and make fun of each other in equal measure. She handles her struggles with grace and humor.

This woman is having a bit of an early-life crisis. Her business life is booming, but her sex-life is hilariously deplorable. Absolutely disastrous. She hasn’t had an orgasm in forever – whether donated, loaned, or self-induced. Her UST is through the roof people.

To make matters worse, new neighbor seems to have the opposite problem – loudly screwing a steady stream of women on the other side of her thin bedroom wall. Her banter with Simon is fabulous. Their enemies to friends to lovers romance was full of heat, heart, and laughter.

Beautiful Bastard by Christina Lauren

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Chloe Mills
A take-no-prisoners modern woman
Role in my entourage: The girl you call when you need, well, just about anything.

If only he would keep his mouth shut, he’d be perfect. A piece of duct tape would do the trick. I had some in my desk that I’d occasionally pull out and fondle, hoping someday I could put it to good use.

Chloe gives as good as she gets. Her boss is a total asshole for the sake of being an asshole. Their back and forth would send any intern home to bury their feelings in a pint of Ben & Jerry’s, but not Chloe Mills. Oh no, she has a pair of brass balls inside those designer power-panties. You have to be one stubborn determined lady to handle a man like Bennett Ryan… And Chloe doesn’t merely handle Ben, she brings him to his knees.

Claiming Addison by Zoey Derrick

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Addison Beltrand
Sexy, silly, confident rock chick
Role in my entourage: The girl to keep things just a little wild on a random Tuesday.

One of them wouldn’t be enough for me, but the two of them just might be too much to handle.

My imaginary relationship with this fictional character is a little strange (even to me) – She is my number one BFF, and I kind of want to be her… and, well, if we drink a little too much wine and wind up making out? I’m cool with that too. Addison has all the qualities I look for in a female MC – she’s intelligent, tenacious, confident, and effortlessly affects everyone around her.

The way she narrates her story with humor and quirkiness had me grinning from ear-to-ear. She tells her story in a way that is almost conspiratorial… Like she’s your girlfriend spilling this naughty story over cocktails at your local hangout.

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Poll: Who is your Book BFF?

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Giveaway – Winner’s Choice:


The Smutsonian is so excited to introduce you to our book BFFs, that we’re going to giveaway an eBook of any of our Top 5 to one lucky winner! Enter here:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Smutsonian Exclusive: Sneak Peek at Found (Assassin’s Revenge #1) by Tara Crescent

Found by Tara Crescent

Series: Assassin’s Revenge #1
{ Click here to buy the book }

I have a mission. Kill the man who kidnapped me. Kill the guards who raped me. I have guns and knives and I’m not afraid to use them. Nothing will stop me.

Then I walk into a bar and I notice him. He is gorgeous. For four long years, my only response to anything sexual has been revulsion and fear.This time, it feels different.

I could use him. I want to use him. I could sleep with him and make a pleasurable memory as a counterpoint to the painful ones. I’m not a frightened young girl anymore. I’m a trained assassin, capable of killing him with my bare hands.

This time, I’ll be in control.

He’s just supposed to be a distraction, this mysterious man in the bar that I have a one-night stand with. But I can’t predict the secrets he is hiding… secrets that are about to intersect my world in painful, unanticipated, and dangerous ways.

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Smutsonian Exclusive: Sneak Peak at Redeeming Kyle (69 Bottles #3) by Zoey Derrick

Redeeming Kyle by Zoey Derrick

Series: 69 Bottles #3
Expected Publication: March 31, 2015
Click here to Pre-Order on Amazon

Falling in love was the easy part…

For Talon Carver, the commanding and charismatic lead singer of the rock band 69 Bottles, life has never been better—or worse. His heart’s at a full 11 for Addison Beltrand, his feisty PR rep. But admitting it was a much different tune. The dilemma’s even more complicated when adding his other lover to the mix: Kyle Black, the band’s handsome, sweet and sexy manager.

Why ruin a good thing, right? Things are pretty damn perfect for the trio—in and out of bed. But just when they find their best rhythm with each other, a rocky night in Minneapolis forces all three to reexamine their feelings—and take their relationship to new levels.

But can love be enough?

The band’s soaring popularity, along with the pressures of maintaining an unconventional relationship on a high-profile rock tour, start to take their toll. When Addison starts to fall apart, Talon and Kyle must come to terms with how important she is to them both.

Can Addison find the strength to be their glue once more?

What happens when the world goes on…but yours suddenly stops?

When everything looks like it’s going to fall apart? Is love enough to bring Talon, Kyle, and Addison back to each other’s arms…and with it, the magic that true redemption can bring?

****Content Warning****
Sexy, naked, bisexual rock stars…and a lot more…
This book contains, but is not limited to the following sexual content – reader discretion is advised – hot sex between two men and one woman. M/M/F, M/F/M, M/F, F/M and M/M sexual content. There are no boundaries when these three crash together, as long as you’re over 18 years of age.

Pre-Order This Book:

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2014 “OVER IT” List

Welcome to the First Annual “Over It” List!

Yesterday The Smutsonian released a list of our Favorite Books of 2014 and we really enjoyed remembering the stories which stuck with us this year. Reminiscing about our favorite books also got us thinking about all of the things we’re tired of seeing in Erotic Literature.

These are elements, characters, or plot-points which are so obnoxious or over used that we’re simply #OverIt – We felt obligated to compile a list of those themes.

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Hello Darling Readers!
Today is my Birthday!

It has been a lovely year for me!
I read several hundred of the sexiest books,
I’m ranked as one of the top Book Reviewers in the world,
I met some amazing authors,
I’ve made a ton of new book friends,
& I just launched The Smutsonian website!

To thank you for making this year so awesome,
I’m giving away a $50 Amazon Gift Card!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

You might be wondering…
Why am I giving YOU a gift on MY Birthday?

The answer is quite simple: you’re the reason I had such a great time this year!

But if you insist on getting me a gift…
I’d like Jake Bass Please! 😉

You should bother him on Twitter until he acknowledges my existence…
I’m kidding!

J.R. Ward’s Love of brands

The following Rant is related to the Black Dagger Brotherhood Series:


Allow me to begin this post by stating that I’ve mostly enjoyed the books in the Black Dagger Brotherhood which I’ve read so far – J.R. Ward presents a wonderfully crafted Urban Fantasy universe which is easy to get sucked into… But I’ve held my tongue long enough about one of the greatest weaknesses of this series:

Brand over-saturation

By the time I read the fifth book in the series, Lover Unbound, I was exhausted by the constant superfluous brand dropping. My mind started turning it into a joke – a parody – after all, the Brotherhood enjoys their rap music… and J.R. Ward was basically turning her novels into a tacky Hip-Hop Music Video.

Conspicuous consumption is clashing with this world of Vampires, warriors and antiquated traditions…

It was like watching a movie on network television and being constantly interrupted with commercial breaks. So as I read the seventh book in the series, Lover Avenged, I resolved to write down every single brand name mentioned.

The Result was Staggering.

The following is a visual of all the brands mentioned by name by J.R. Ward in one single novel. Keep in mind, I’m reading these books in paperback, and putting down the book to write out each new brand. I barely got through two or three pages of this novel – which clocks in at 655 pages – without stopping to add to the list. Sometimes there were five or more on each page, and many of them were repeated… I was a busy girl…

Here are the fruits of my labor:

Keep in mind, I’m not including all of the movies, Tv shows, albums, actors, singers, celebrities, bands, and songs which were all mentioned… And there were a ton of those as well. These are only the object brands…




























Holy. Fucking. Shit.

Did you wear out your scrolling finger? Did you get tired of seeing all of those logos and wonder what the hell they had to do with the Black Dagger Brotherhood?

Me too…

I’m not sure if J.R. Ward is getting any cash for all her name dropping, but I feel like I need to state clearly that all of the brands, images, and logos I just posted are the property of the companies who produced them. I’m only posting them because they were mentioned by name in a book, and I am a book reviewer. I receive no money for what I do… That was over 150 logos, so that’s 150+ companies with more money for lawyers than I could ever hope to have. I’m getting the sweats just looking at all those registered trademarks. Yikes! Please don’t sue this blogger!!!

So here’s the question:
Were all those brands really necessary to tell this story?

Hell No.

Being brand-specific occasionally pays off. Giving the brand of a cologne, aftershave, or even alcohol is appreciated because it helps to evoke the sense of smell. Saying that someone is wearing a designer suit is usually specific enough, but when you name the designers for the suit, belt, shoes, etc… You start to deviate into American Psycho territory. Too much information.

Was the brand of water really necessary to the plot? Could we have survived knowing that there was a bottle of water? Did we need to know what grocery store Ehlena shopped at? The coffee shop she stopped at? The stores in the strip-mall surrounding the coffee shop?

I can only imagine what’s going to happen when someone picks up these books in fifteen years… How many of these brands are going to be relevant? Several of the companies have already gone belly-up in the 5ish years since the book was published. It’s not only distracting… Mentioning all of these companies dramatically decreases the shelf life of the book.

Have you ever stumbled across a movie from the early ’90s and marveled at the ridiculously huge and bulky cell phones? Floppy disks? That’s precisely the kind of staying power J.R. Ward is ensuring with this unnecessary over saturation of brands…

They’re not improving anything other than the word-count of these books.

So, what about you darling reader? What are our thoughts on excessive branding? 

TOP 5: Book Boyfriends


As you may already know, it is my birth-week (that’s right, I celebrate the whole week) so it seemed fitting that the Top Five post should be about something completely superfluous and subjective… Every reader has their own literary spank-bank significant others… I thought this would be the perfect time to share mine with you 🙂

Ah Book Boyfriends…

I have a metaphorical harem of Book Boyfriends. It’s a revolving door of swoon-worthy men, ever changing because who knows what awaits me in the next book… This list might look completely different a year from now…

So here are my TOP FIVE Book Boyfriends of the moment

Click the Cover or Title to read my Full Review of each book

Bared to You by Sylvia Day

Gideon Cross
Alpha-Male, business-brilliant, billionaire, sex-god, obsessed, relentless, broken… He is just the right side of being a complte stalker-lunitic. Gotta love those Billionares who can be cured with the power of love…

Transcendence by Shay Savage

My sweet caveman with a heart of gold… He is the ultimate alpha-male hero looking to protect his mate, and, ya know… Put a baby in her. Plus, he doesn’t have any language skills, so you know he won’t talk back.

Gabriel’s Inferno by Sylvain Reynard

Professor Gabriel Emerson
The gorgeous Dante professor with a haunted past and a poet’s heart… He’s a completely arrogant asshole until he falls wildly in love, then he’s a smooth-talking, multilingual, jet-setting Casanova. Sadly this status only applies to book one in the series.

Double Time by Olivia Cunning

Trey Mills
No list of lust-worthy book boyfriends is complete without a rock star! Trey is a guitarist and a bisexual who believes three is company… I am totally fucking on board. He’s battled adversity, addiction, and a broken heart.

Beautiful Stranger by Christina Lauren

Max Stella
 My British Book boyfriend – a financial genius, reformed man-whore, & active sexual exhibitionist. Everything about him will melt your ovaries. I’ll share the rest of the boys on this list, but Max is mine.