Disclaimer: please forgive me for this admittedly shite attempt at a review for this book, I am still finding it hard to form actual words at this point.
Summary from Goodreads:
Emily Vargas has been taken captive. As part of his conditioning methods, her captor refuses to speak to her, knowing how much she craves human contact. He's far too beautiful to be a monster. Combined with his lack of violence toward her, this has her walking a fine line at the edge of sanity. Told in the first person from Emily's perspective, Comfort Food explores what happens when all expectations of pleasure and pain are turned upside down, as whips become comfort and chicken soup becomes punishment.
This is not a story about consensual BDSM. This is a story about “actual” slavery. If
reading an erotic story without safewords makes you uncomfortable, this is not the
book for you. This is a work of fiction, and the author does not endorse or condone any behavior done to another human being without their consent.
I also love this dedication at the beginning: To silence. Not always the enemy of communication.
this book floored me. absolutely floored me. I've never read anything like it. I've read my share of BDSM (so I thought) but nothing this hardcore. there was nothing pretty or fluffy about it, just full on D/s M/s. it was simultaneously terrifying & wonderful. I cringed but couldn't look away. in fact, as I type this I have a headache because I don't think I blinked the entire time I was reading it.
the interaction between Emily & Master was horrible & sexy & vile & yet had a softness to part of it that should be ridiculous given the type of story it is. the co-dependency between the two of them by the end cannot be denied. I give kudos to Bear for reading it & not having anyone to OMG to because I was IM'ing her like crazy with things like, 'I think I need to have my head examined. I'm finding this so hot.' to which she replied (perfectly, of course) 'he has you, doesn't he?' oh yes, he did.
Master had me at 'Shhhh' or honestly even earlier, the first time he took Emily into the good room. Emily herself amazed me in her ability to analyze & reason out exactly what was going on with her own thoughts & emotions as well as Master's AND that she remained sane enough to not drive herself psycho.
I would probably be far more likely to think myself into insanity or a stroke in a similar situation. I'm too much of a mouthy, fighty, stubborn, bossy bitch. then again, one never knows what one will do in any given situation unless one is experiencing it. the human mind is a fascinating thing.
I loved Kitty Thomas' writing style, the words just had a lovely ebb & flow to them. I'm not a huge fan of first person narrative but it didn't bother me in the slightest with this, if anything I think it made it feel even more personal. the scenes written in third person provide more of an outside perspective, slightly voyeuristic.
there are no negatives to this book. it is different & frightening, taking you far from your normal comfort zone. morals must be left at the door & still you will struggle with your sense of right & wrong. it will stay with you long after you've finished reading it & for me, nothing is better than a book that will make you question ideas, beliefs, thoughts. could possibly also have you frantically IM'ing your friends who have also read Comfort Food with things like, 'I need to go to confession & I'm not even Catholic!' and 'I need a shrink. and a priest. I need an old priest & a young priest.'
this is NOT for everyone. for some people, it will offend every fiber of their being. it will disturb you, make you think naughty things. things that you probably don't think you should be thinking. you will cringe & want to cover your eyes but won't be able to look away. it will activate your feminist side. totally screw how you look at the things you think people do to one another behind closed doors. it will make you question things you think you know about how you view certain situations, especially in a right or wrong capacity. you think you know, but you have no idea.
I loved this book. absolutely loved it. I expect it will keep fucking my head up for a good long time. that's just fine with me.