Review: A Clockwork Butterfly by Tabitha Rayne
A Clockwork Butterfly is a unique blend of steampunk and femdom in a dystopian world. New to me author, Ms. Rayne hooks me into her lovely world of dominant females, bondage, whipping and steampunk. I expect great things from the talented Ms. Rayne. Her world crafting shows much potential as does her character building.
Lena is a very innocent girl plucked from obscurity to help collect the sperm from a fertile male. These prized males are kept in manors to protect them and extract their seed. Lena undergoes a schooling which leaves her ill prepared to "milk" her male. Angelo is a boy trapped in a golden cage. Like his clockwork butterflies, he's expected to perform on command. When Lena and Angelo break the rules, more questions arise and Lena is sent off for punishment.
I'm picky when it comes to steampunk. This is light steampunk yet enough to make me find it quite enjoyable. Specifically the butterfly caught my attention and I really like it. How it's integrated into the storyline is quite well done. From a plot perspective, this story moved along. It felt a little bumpy, but this is to be expected because the story is from Lena's perspective. She is in the dark about the world and she learns more about how it functions, the reader learns with her. The world building is fun speculative fiction. I've read other dystopian worlds where women rule. It will be interesting to see how Ms. Rayne continues to build up this world. I'm also eager to learn about the different players and what the world is like outside of the manor and the correctional center. Many facts are revealed near the end of the story which leaves me with more questions than answers. It also makes a reader want to read the next book in the series immediately.
What I really enjoyed about this book is the innocence lost for Lena. Her sexual awakening through Mae is a tantalizing f/f meal. It is never too graphic, but just enough to give the reader a clear picture of a young girl first learning about orgasms at the hands of an experienced female. This gradually morphs into kinky sex with bondage and whippings. Lena is a submissive who thrives under the lash be it from Mae or Angelo. This crescendos into deviance as the Wasp takes Lena into her den of iniquity. Sexually speaking, this story is quite erotically arousing.
Something which I really enjoyed is Ms. Rayne's contrasts between those who have freedom and those who do not. Those who are outside of this manor, they live in humble abodes and don't seem to have much except the ability to go where they choose. Those in the manor, the more restrictions on their personal freedoms, the more material luxuries they are given. Both Angelo and the Wasp live in a place anyone would love, if they could only come and go as they please. This juxtaposition of material wealth and personal freedom is thought provoking and subtly inserted into the storyline. I like this kind of underlying covert theme. I hope it continues to be explored in later installments in this series.
This is a 3.5 star book for me. I recommend it to f/f lovers who enjoy kinky steampunk.
*I received this book as a review copy in return for an honest review