de la Grotte Cachée, the Castle of the Hidden Grotto, is
home to four immortals with voracious appetites for sex.
Darius, recluse, shape-shifter and healer, is a djinn who
upon being touched by a human, must fulfill their innermost
desire. Lili is a succubus and craves sex like a woman
yearns for a perfectly fitting bra. Elic, LIli’s lover,
needs sex as well but can only find satisfaction with a
human; alas, he and Lili have a relationship built on love,
partner-sharing, and mutual masturbation. Elic also has
another unique trait. He can transform into “Elle”, a female
who has sex with males, then can convert back to “Elic” and
impregnate a human female with the semen he stole. And then
there’s Inigo, a satyr who’ll take whomever he can get:
male, female, other immortals.
tales take place in this novel; the latter two are
intertwined with flashbacks. The year is 1829. David
Beckett, a Jesuit-in-training, arrives at the chateau with
the goal of redesigning the castle’s gardens. But he also
has a secret mission. Reports have reached the Vatican of
orgies, demon possession, and debauchery. David must uncover
what is true and what is false. But with Lili setting her
sights on him, it’s going to be difficult to hold to his
takes place in modern times. Emmett Archer is dying. Isabel
Archer, daughter and heir to the administration of the
chateau, wants nothing to do with the immortals. You see,
the heir would be responsible for finding Adrien, the
seigneur of Grotte Cachée, a Gifted wife. Since
Isabel is madly in love with Adrien, finding him a mate is
on her to-do list right below cleaning the London Tower
latrines. At thirty-five, Isabel’s biological clock is
ticking down. Using her father’s illness to return home, she
seduces Adrien in the hopes of becoming pregnant with his
child, not that she’d ever let him know if she did.
Emmett’s ding-bat nurse’s aid whose sexual appetites match
the immortals, but whose sensibilities and dereliction of
duty make you hope she drowns in one of the chateau’s
springs or ponds (unfortunately, she doesn’t). Grace Garvey,
a unique lesbian lady I wish the book would have shown more
of, is the second nurse’s aid and the eventual recipient of
one of the immortal’s “gifts”.
give you much more without spilling the proverbial beans,
but I can say everyone (but maybe Chloe and who cares about
her? I guarantee you won’t) winds up having a happily ever
after. Break out the champagne.
Whispers of the Flesh is book three of the Castle of
the Hidden Grotto series, but stands quite nicely on its
own. I haven’t read the earlier two books, but if
Whispers of the Flesh is an indication of the
quality of the other two, I’ll be checking them out shortly.
Erotic? Definitely yes. Has a plot? For the most part, yes,
though none of the tales have exceptionally complex nuances.
Characters well written? Yes, again. Well edited? Yep. And
Ms. Burton manages to convey a lot of information without
info-dumping. Hurrahs all around.
At first, the thought of a Jesuit-in-training being
deflowered by a succubus struck me as crass and dancing on
forbidden ground, but Ms. Burton handles the tale remarkably
well. Bondage, creative toys, body painting, threesomes,
anal play, male-male, female-female: Whispers of the
Flesh is a chocolate box full of sexual treats. My
favorite quote: “The ceremonial consumption of these
intoxicants induces a trancelike euphoria and diminished
inhibitions. In this state of intoxication, the clan
performs the sacred fertility rite, a period of ecstatic
dancing followed by indiscriminate mating.” (Hint: it
actually refers to a bunch of high naked hippies dancing
around a bonfire.) If you are in the mood for quality
erotica, Whispers of the Flesh will not
disappoint. Well done, Ms. Burton.