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This blog is dedicated to my Finding Anna series, and it's characters. I've developed it to be an interactive resource for my readers. Take a look around. Visit the playroom. Get to know each of the characters and even ask them questions. Above all...enjoy!

Reviews

What would you do if you found a girl who was being held as a sex slave against her will? Stephan Coleman does the only thing he can think of: he buys her off the sadistic creep who has been abusing her for the past ten months. But Brianna is broken and confused about her new Master’s motives. He bought her – so he must be just like her old Master… right?

Don’t be put off by the title or the cover image – Slave by Sherri Hayes is a book about the BDSM world without too many of the graphic images one might expect with this subject matter. We uncover details of Brianna’s life with the evil Ian as she gradually warms to Stephan and tells him about her past, but the sadism isn’t dwelled upon in detail. The story instead focuses on her recovery and her blossoming relationship with Stephan.

Hayes writes in alternating points of view so the reader can see how each of the two protagonists feel about the other, feelings neither of them believe they can communicate openly. Brianna’s mistrust and fear slowly diminish, and Stephan realizes his friends may be right about him after all.

Slave leaves the reader with many questions about what will happen next in their relationship. What about Brianna’s father? And who is Anna? I look forward to finding out when the sequel is published next year.
~Andrea, Goodreads

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I just wanted to say how much i appreciate the way you handle this topic with grace and dignity. Human slavery does exist in this world, and girls are being held as sex slaves right now. Jacee Dugard is one such example, no one should be forced to do anything sexual against their will that being said there are some consenting adults that choose to go into a BDSM lifestyle and for them it fulfills a need. It is not the same a rape or abuse. Sure there are some people involved in this lifestyle that abuse their power, but the same could also be said of some people in "normal" relationships. For me this story shows that love can heal people and can restore what abuse has destroyed. Thanks Sherri, love your story.

From a fellow Ohioan.

~Julie Downey, Goodreads

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This is only the first installment of what appears to be a series of books. First off, this was originally a Twilight fanfic that ended in pretty much the same spot as this book. And other than names and places, I couldn't find much different in this published version.

Brianna (Anna) is a young woman in a horrible situation. Stephan is made aware of the horrors and decides to rescue her by purchasing her from her current 'owner'. The subject of involuntary slavery and human trafficking is touched upon in a respectful manner. What is not made clear is that by handing a check to Brianna's current owner, Stephan has likely implicated himself as well and might be held responsible for his actions down the road. This point is at no time brought up.

The rest of the story is basically a depiction of Stephan's attempts to help Brianna overcome the trauma and Brianna's confusion at the actions of her new master. His approach may not be the most conventional but over the course of this book, it becomes clear that what he is doing is actually working.

As with most books I've purchased from this publisher, spelling and punctuation errors can be found throughout the book, and this often distracts the reader and contorts the meaning of a specific sentence.

The ending of this first installment is unfortunate, in a way. There is no information as to the next book, or anything. It just ends. This could have been handled much better, in my opinion.

I have to say that while I liked it, I can't give it more than three stars. The writing is uneven, and the switching POVs between Stephan and Brianna don't work well for me. It would have been better had this book been revised into 3rd person POV. Seeing the character names in bold before the sections is distracting and interrupts the flow.

I will likely purchase the rest of the series, even though the pricing is a bit on the high side for 200 pages, just because I'd like to see the conclusion of Brianna's and Stephan's story.

~Twilightmomoftwo, Goodreads


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I wasn't too sure about this book. I didn't know what to think about the Slave theme. But Stephan seems like a really nice and caring guy. Not really interested in having a slave but longing for a strong woman.. and a sub. Brianna has a long way to go, but I think she'll get there.

I'm a little confused as to why it is themed erotica when not much Erotica happens.
I did love the storyline and I'll definately read the sequel.


~Love2read30, Goodreads

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This book is, by far, my favorite BDSM story ever. Every page was emotional, filled with caring and compassion, uncertainty and thoughtfulness, fear and love. It was incredibly powerful, extraordinarily moving, touching and deep. So many times you go into a book expecting one thing and getting another – getting something more than you ever counted on or expected. I was looking for a good read when I pressed the ‘buy’ button on my Kindle. What I got transcended the realm of good books and transported me to the world of soul-searching, thought-provoking reading.

A quick recap of the plot before I once again decide to rave about the beauty of this book. Stephan is CEO of a non-for-profit, a caring friend, and a Dom – without a sub. Daren, a friend from college, asks to meet him for lunch one day to discuss ‘something serious’. A fellow Dom, Daren asks Stephan to help a girl in trouble - by buying her. The girl, Brianna, is a slave but Daren doesn’t believe she serves Ian (her current Master) willingly. Stephan is conflicted, but his desire to help a girl in trouble wins out and he goes and buys her immediately (*shudders* what a scary scene). Stephan has major issues buying a person, but knows there’s no other way to get her out of Ian’s clutches. He hopes, when he takes her away from Ian, things will be easier. However nothing is easy with Brianna. She hardly speaks and is emotionally damaged beyond belief. The question is – can this Dom help her regain any sense of self, and heal her tortured, battered mentality? He can, and will, try.

What I loved so much about this book was how it showed the true role of a Dom. Society focuses on the brutality of BDSM relationships, and the violence. They use that to label the subs as abused, insecure individuals with Stockholm syndrome or the like, and the Doms as cold-hearted, pleasure-seeking, power-hungry abusers. Anyone who reads this book and truly takes its messages to heart can clearly see how wrong that assessment is. Everything Stephan does, he does thinking of Brianna and how it will affect her - how he can help her. This book so clearly revealed the love, the caring, the tenderness involved in a healthy BDSM relationship. Stephan abandoned his own needs, wants, and desires throughout the entirety of the book, acting solely on what Brianna needed to heal. It’s very clear he doesn’t abuse her, and as her Dom is looking for her to heal, not for his own pleasure. That is what it means to be a Dom, and Hayes revealed that beautifully through Stephan’s patient consideration and thoughtfulness.

This book is written in first person, alternating between Brianna and Stephan’s POVs. Though I am not a fan of first person, it really worked for me in this book. I liked being privy to the thoughts of both so I could get a full, complete picture of the emotions and motivations of each character. It also gave further evidence to Stephan’s caring and to Brianna’s need for his kindness. Hayes writes a captivating, compelling tale as I watched both Stephan and Brianna struggle. A testament to Stephan’s love of Brianna is that he never gave up on her or lost his temper, even though I imagine it would’ve been very difficult not to. He ignored his own frustration in favor of helping heal her brokenness, and undergoes pain of his own for her as he watches her fear and mistrust. Used to trained subs that fully trust him, I’m sure dealing with Brianna was very hard on him and it made my heart ache that he worked so hard to make her happy. Brianna’s point of view was equally captivating, as we watched her go through nightmares, phobias, embarrassment, terror, confusion, apathy, hopelessness and hope. She was so sweet, so fragile and delicate, and so perfectly sad. It was heart-wrenching to read about her, all she went through, and all she keeps going through – the nightmares she has to relive. It made it all the more splendid to see how infinitely careful Stephan was with her.

Hayes fully introduces the reader to the softer, kinder, sweeter side ofa BDSM relationship that society often disregards or refuses to see. I shall conclude my review by saying that I have never waited in greater anticipation for the next book of a series to come out (except perhaps Harry Potter?) and I pray Hayes will write quickly.

“Sexy”ness rating: Low (I know, it’s a BDSM but it’s low. They never went beyond kissing)

Overall Rating: A to A+

Bottom Line: This book was eye-opening, showing the beauty and love of a BDSM relationship and the gentle, thoughtful nature of a true Dom as he takes care of his sub.

Genre: BDSM ROMANCE

~Rose May, http://romantic-rosesblog.blogspot.com/

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I finished the book last night--erm, well, at 2am anyway. It sounds almost exactly the same as it was when it was a fanfic, then again, I haven't read the fic since it was taken down. Still a good story.

That being said, my main problem with both the fic, and now the story, still stands. I believe they move way too fast physically. Yes, they're "only" kissing. And I understand one can physically desire someone the second they lay eyes on them. However, given her mental state and his desire to not force her into anything, I would have a hard time believe he would tell her to kiss him so soon—and eventually deepen that kiss. I am keeping in mind that this is a story of fiction. Even with the research done, at the end of the day it's a story about fiction which has been labeled as erotica.

I don't have much to say about the research and “truthful” BDSM aspects of the story. 1-this is short compared to what I remember reading of the fic, 2-EVERY situation is different and 3-I have no idea what will happen in the next story. Right now, the BDSM element seems to be barely touched upon for researched content. Everything seems very basic, what could be found in a 101 book in Borders or something.

For a story, I have to say I'm satisfied. I wished it were longer and I can't wait to read to happens *after* the point where you took the fanfic down. I won't ask you to hurry up and publish the next book because I hate when people do that for a single chapter. I will say that I await the next installment though.

~Ena

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Very intriguing start, can't wait to read more about Brianna and Stephan. This was different than I expected, the story dealt with the psychological fallout caused by a sadistic Dom who enslaved a teenage girl and broke her spirit. Stephan's friend sees Brianna at a party and finds out her Dom is willing to sell her, he knows that Stephan has the means to buy her and the willingness to help someone in dire need. The rest of the story demonstrates Stephan's big heart and amazing patience with Brianna's panic attacks and inability to function without commands. She is slowly beginning to trust him and realize she's safe with him.

It ended rather abruptly, so I'll be impatiently waiting for the next book!


~Heather S., Goodreads

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It will be interesting to see where the next book takes these two ...

~Claire, Goodreads

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This book was definitely one that you can get lost in. I cheered for Stephan with each successful step he took with Brianna's well-being. I yearned for Brianna to tell Stephan the whole truth of what happened to her. I also found myself frustrated with them both. The end left me wanting more, wanting to be able to pick up the second book, not yet published of course, and continue reading to see where life will take them.

While I'm not into the lifestyle, this book was a different point of view from some of the other stories and books I've read. I look forward to the next book in the series.


~Martha Donovan, Goodreads

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This is much more novella than novel, and judging by the openended endinging would lend itself to the serial book format that Stephen King incorporated with The Green Mile series. A quick read. I would have liked a more indepth view of the characters, but still peaks your interest as to how their lives will unfold and leaves you wanting more. Concept seems a bit far fetched, then again not a genre I’m familiar with. That said, it would be interesting to see how the various relationships unfold. Will there be more? I predict there will.

~susiebrooks, LibraryThing



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3 1/2 stars rounded up. This 236 page book begins with Brianna living in an abusive slave relationship from which she cannot escape. Stephan is a dominant who is looking for a submissive when a friend tells him of Brianna's situation. Being Stephan, he cannot walk away from her plight and approaches her current master, who is known to be abusive. When Stephan first sees Brianna, he knows he wants her and is forced to "buy" her from her master.

The balance of this story is told in mostly Stephan's POV as he struggles to help a broken Brianna, but we do also hear her POV occasionally and understand what she is going through. Their relationship develops painfully slowly, as Brianna requires careful handling and support. Often it is one step forward and two steps back.

There is no real conclusion at the story's end, rather a feeling of to-be-continued.

I found this story very compelling and very different than other BDSM titles I've read. Do not expect bdsm scenes or sex in this first installment, as neither take place. For me this was not a problem, and I grew fond of both Brianna and Stephan as they struggled to find their way. I look forward to reading more of their story.


~Dee Wyeth, Goodreads  

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I just finished this book. I would have to say it ranks among one of the best I've read this year. It was absolutely heart wrenching reading Brianna's story. To read everything she's been thru it is so understandable that she is so very frightened of anything and everything around her. Stephan is doing an amazing job with her. I was so sad when the story ended. I wanted more!!!

So now Sherri needs to not lift her head and continue this story for us. I just can't wait for the next book. 
~Debbie, Goodreads
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Very good. Every time I read a book where the topic of BDSM is involved, the Dominant (which is usually male) is usually very attentive, responsible, and respectful of his submissive- especially if the two are in a relationship outside of the playroom. This is the first story I've read that showed a more sadistic side to the BDSM lifestyle. While I know that in "real life" a situation like Brianna's slavery under Ian does happen, I certainly hope there are more Dom's like Stephan and Logan; I also would hope that in the BDSM community, participants, like Daren, would realize that something was wrong and try to help. Having said that, also in "real life" I would hope that the authorities would be involved so that the abusive pattern/slave trading wouldn't continue.

While Stephan's intentions when he purchases Brianna are to help her; the fact remains that she thinks she's a slave still and one that was forced into slavery- into this lifestyle. Would she even choose to be a submissive and have a BDSM relationship with a Dom had she not been forced into it? Which is what Stephan is hoping for; but the story ended at this point. Personally, I do think Brianna would choose to be a submissive now, because her brain has been rewired to submit and I don't see her totally being happy unless she had a Master to please or a Master to take care of her. I'm happy that Stephan is willing to give her that choice, and possibly losing her if she chooses to go.

In the next book, as much as I want Stephan and Brianna to remain together and have their HEA, I honestly think Brinna needs to be on her own and face her demons without having Stephan being there 24/7. Will she ever heal if she becomes dependent on him for everything? Would her feelings for Stephan seem real if she didn't get a chance to explore life without him? I also am disappointed that Lily didn't tell Brianna that she was a submissive and explain that to her... I am hoping that Lily takes her more "under her wing" and explains how Stephan, as a Master, is totally different than what she experienced with Ian (if that is the lifestyle she chooses). I also am eager to see exactly how Brianna was "sold" to Ian... her father as some answering to do to Stephan, I think. ;) 
~Beth Hodge, Goodreads
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I started this book with equal amounts of anticipation and trepidation. This kind of storyline can make for a really good book, or one riddled with clich├ęs and bad writing. But this book was even better than I had anticipated. I couldn’t put it away and the story pulled me in completely.

What I liked most about this book was how the author never went for the easy solutions. There was no magical cure for Brianna, Stephan made mistakes – some which he realized and some which he didn’t (want to) see. The secondary characters were well rounded, none were completely vilified, something that could have easily happened with Richard’s character. He doesn’t approve of Stephan’s lifestyle, but loves his nephew enough to keep trying, and he does have a valid point about Brianna, even though Stephan refuses to hear it.

What I also really liked in this book was the way the lifestyle was depicted. No hard-core BDSM just for the sake of it, no BDSM fairy tale where everything is always candies and roses and nothing ever goes wrong, but no vilifying it either. But I was most impressed by the fact that the author never drew a line in the sand between submission and voluntary slavery where submission was the ‘right’ choice and slavery the ‘wrong’ choice. Considering this was a book about a girl rescued from forced slavery, such a distinction could have easily been made but never was. In fact, the author showed that neither submission nor slavery is wrong, as long as all parties agree to it.

So, all in all, I was very impressed with this book and I liked it very much. I was very sad to see the end of it. The ending itself is very open ended and after some checking on the author’s blog, it appears that this was the first book in a series about Stephan and Brianna. Now that I can get behind! I highly recommend this book and I look forward to reading the next one in the series. 
~Samantha, Bookworms and Tea Lovers http://bookwormsandtea.blogspot.com

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Just finished "Slave" Finding Anna: Book 1 and found it to be a lovely Romance story from the subgenre of "Love Blooms in the least expected places". Or at least that potential is there. Few concrete answers have been presented, but isn't that true to life, we can suspect and hope for the best, but don't really know?

I liked that the best intentions can go astray when we don't communicate effectively and assume our motives are transparent.

I felt that Anna might actually have been/be on the road to an unhealthy mental attachment to pleasing Stephan, but got a few hints that she may yet move past it. I could see it being utterly natural for the human mind to go there in RL, but like the "what if" of what if for these two people, love is enough to help heal the most appalling of wounds. I didn't find this story to be a statement on modern day slavery, but an examination of these two individuals.

The way we as humans can make mistakes with the best of intentions when we allow our feelings too much control over our actions was a very interesting sub-theme. It ticked me off with Stephan several times, and made me had empathy (which is different than sympathy, mind you) for his judgement.

This was a very thought provoking and entertaining story that makes me have so much concern for real modern day slaves. They don't have someone with whom they feel inexplicably safe despite their well earned panic, but then I read Romance for stories of hope and redemption where little chance of it can be seen in the beginning.

~IslandWoman

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Well, for me, a strange narrative. The story is mainly concerned with the gradual recovery of a young abused woman from sexual slavery. She, Brianna, is saved from an abusive, violent and detestable man by the main character in the book, Stephan. Unfortunately although we are supposed to like Stephan and sympathise with him and his motives, I have issues with her being ‘rescued’ by a person who wishes his partners to always be submissive to his whims.

The book is well written, possibly overly detailed on the minutiae of every day life but the Brianna character held my interest as she started to recapture and then assert her own personality.

However the book does not reach any sort of conclusion and annoyingly just ends.

~jimleask, LibraryThing

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This was, perhaps, the most instantly enjoyable book I have received via Early Reviewers thus far. The characters, for this genre, were believable and likable.

The genre itself isn't at all what it seems by the title. It was very tasteful. Our characters are mostly dealing with post-traumatic stress syndrome. Our male character trying to help the female overcome it without bringing in police or non-familial medical help. That being said, there is still a fair amount of sexual tension, but probably not much more than your average novel.

A fun read that definitely is surprising in its intelligence. I look forward eagerly for the next installment!

~BigBangBooks, LibraryThing

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I must have missed something in the description of this book when I requested it from the Early Reviewers scheme. It was only when I imported the book into my ebook library that I saw the tags BDSM, erotica, romance. I’m fine with erotica and romance but BDSM – no! Pain - receiving or inflicting it - is not one of my preferred leisure activities. However if I’m to continue taking part in the scheme I have to fulfil my side of the bargain so I read it (admittedly very quickly, ready to skip any nasty detail) and this is my review.

As it turned out I needn’t have worried about any nasty details (except for the snakes, but that’s a problem for me generally – nothing to do with BDSM), it was boredom that made it hard to get through to the end. I read it on my kindle and the contents page lists 26 chapters contained in 279 pages. That's not as bad as it might have been as on the printed page I think there would have been a lot of white space. The writing has a lot of boring and unnecessary detail and description by way of scene setting; there is no plot to speak of – the characters just go about their ordinary daily lives: going to work, preparing and eating meals, having baths and showers, reading books, watching TV, going to bed and so on. Our heroine – The Slave – gradually adjusts to a more independent life, not unrealistically quickly, but perhaps for the sake of literary enjoyment it would have been better not to describe every day in the same mind-numbingly tedious detail. It’s possible to give a sense of time passing without listing the detail of every day, after all.

Then at the end of Chapter 26 it stops. Not finishes it just stops. And that was the best bit.


~CDVicarage, LibraryThing


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I read Slave and i have to say that is the best book i have read all year it is appropriate for older teenagers, as well as being very fast-paced and written extremely well. I loved how easily i could read it and be intrigued so easily by just the first sentence.

~Robin eEdmonds, Amazon.com

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Awesome book, so much mystery and the underlining love that Stephan has for Anna is awesome. I really enjoyed it and can not wait for the second book. 

~Veronica, Goodreads