Nadja’s Choice by Judith Anderson
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Story Rating: 3 out of 5 paddles
Sting Factor (kink): 2 out of 5
This is the story of Jack Avery, a computer technician and recent transplant from the big city to small town Flaxville, where he meets Nadja Koenig, the town librarian. Jack moved to get away from the city, but there are other things he hopes also to have left behind. Nadja just wants her library to remain the familiar place she grew up knowing and loving. But when she sees all the technological changes coming, will it be the same place for her? She feels threatened by Jack’s plans to install a computerized check-out system, but is intrigued by his air of command and self-assured confidence. Will his dark secrets from the past drive her away? And how will she react when he offers to introduce her to the BDSM toy box under his bed?
How, indeed? Well, it’s a good thing Nadja is a librarian, because she had access to BDSM reading material before Jack ever moved to town. And good thing he happens to already have a box full of toys, since Nadja thought a little D/s might be fun to try. And what a coincidence that, out of all the people in the world, she and Jack met on an online site the night before actually meeting in person. And he just happens to be the computer tech the town hired to upgrade the local library. Just go figure, won’t you?
On one of the first mornings in his new home, Jack has all of his BDSM toys spread out on his bed to better organize them. But nosey Larry appears at the door, and Jack won’t allow him to come in, due to the display of toys. (Perhaps Jack is one of those people who keeps his bed by the front door.) And who, exactly, is Larry, you ask? He’s a character you’ll love to dislike, as he more than adequately represents a composite of the small-town busybody. But Larry understandably resents anyone who might want to put their hot little hands on “his” surprisingly chaste town librarian.
It’s difficult to fathom why Nadja would fear a technological advance for her library. It’s not as if she’s utilizing tin cans and string for phones. Be that as it may, Nadja and Jack find they have the hots for one another, and the author creates clever banter between the two as their attraction grows. Larry always shows up where he is least wanted, keeping the story somewhat entertaining. As for Jack’s “dark secrets,” it was a bit of a stretch to believe anyone would care to expend any energy whatsoever to destroy Jack’s fun-filled, exciting and chance-of-a-lifetime opportunity to computerize a library check-out system.
“Nadja’s Choice” is a fast, BDSM-lite read. The plot isn’t terribly exciting, nor is the BDSM. But the characters are rather cute and the dialogue is often quite clever.
Reviewed by Summer Sterling