cover image Asking for It

Asking for It

Lilah Pace. Berkley, $15 trade paper (336p) ISBN 978-0-42527-951-9

The anonymous author’s first novel under the Pace pseudonym is an unconventional tale of tangled erotic obsession infused with dark emotions. Vivienne Charles, a 25-year-old doctoral student, is humiliated at a party when her ex-lover blurts out her fixation with rape fantasies. She’s equally stunned, turned on, and scared when sexy, brooding science professor Jonah Marks discreetly says he can give her what she wants. With a safe word in place, Viv finds the reality of her daydreams to be even more incredible than she imagined. Jonah’s caring actions after their raw sexual situations seems at odds with his willingness to mimic violence, and she wonders who he really is. Then what starts as an innocent conversation ends up pushing them both to their limits. Through Viv’s therapy sessions, Pace explores the aftermath of sexual assault, making this more than just an erotic romp. The unflinching honesty of the voice and perspective of the story pulls the reader in right from the start, and the tension builds to a breathtaking climax and cliffhanger ending. Readers willing to read explicit fantasies of nonconsensual sex will be enthralled. Agent: Diana Fox, Fox Literary. (June)