Zach wants Teal as he’s wanted no other woman. He wants to show her that it is not necessary for her to always be in control and he wants to be the one who this strong-willed woman relinquishes her control to. He is troubled by the feelings that he’s developing for Teal and soon wants more than just a sexual affair.
Despite their agreement to keep their relationship purely sexual, Teal and Zach each struggle against their increasing emotions. Witnessing their discovery of newfound feelings and the uncertainty of weakening to the point of giving in to those feelings is a great pleasure.
When Mia is inadvertently shoved into Dominick Jamison in the park, landing flat on top of him, she later regrets having walked away from him, when it is obvious that there is a very base sexual attraction between them. When the two meet up again and that attraction is still present, they agree to a sex-only relationship. The tender affection that Dominick shows Mia is very confusing to her, since she has always been somewhat of an outcast in her family.
Dominick Jamison was recently a newspaper columnist, writing a highly popular men’s column. He quits the paper when his editor insists upon taking control of the articles Dominick has written and he directs his professional focus to writing freelance articles, while dreaming of writing the novel that has been tooling around in his head. When Mia runs into him, quite literally, he can’t stop thinking about her and when he sees her in a bar a few days later, he makes a move to meet her. Disbelieving the feelings that Mia evokes in him, Dominick finds himself wanting more than the arrangement they’ve agreed upon. Mia accepts him unconditionally and effortlessly gives him the confidence to begin his book.
Mia and Zach are written in first person with chapters alternating between their points of view. Sasha White has the art of writing first person down pat and the clever way she uses the viewpoints of both characters is an excellent touch.
Caitlin Ellis is a talented, successful masseuse, gifted with the ability to read people’s auras. She agrees to pose nude to model erotic jewelry for her friend, Mia, when she meets photographer Jack Lowell. She is immediately drawn to him, wanting to take away the emotional pain that is practically rolling off of him. After a beautiful, passion-filled night with Jack, Caitlyn feels that she might actually be reaching him; but then, he rejects her.
Jack Lowell gives off a darkness when Caitlyn first meets him. He is a hugely talented photojournalist, yet keeps himself holed up in his apartment, working as a simple photographer. Jack refuses to talk to Caitlyn about his past and what took place to make him a near recluse; he is more than willing to join in the sex she selflessly offers. Caitlyn is like a balm for his troubled soul and spirit; but, Jack isn’t willing to fully accept her healing touch.
This is the shortest of the three stories in this anthology; Ms. White doesn’t skimp on emotion. Jack is deeply tortured and Caitlyn’s natural instinct is to heal him. Excellently written and satisfyingly sensual, this story and its characters are a wonderful addition to this anthology.
It is easy to give this single-author anthology a very high recommendation. Sasha White’s readers are always guaranteed biting edge and fiercely strong characters that are unashamedly brazen in their sensuality and LUSH is no exception. Ms. White writes emotional conflict and angst as few authors can.