Since we’ve sprung forward and the days are getting longer here in North America, it seems timely to celebrate today’s special day; Plant a Flower Day! My personal all-time favorite flower is the peony with its fluffy petals and delicate yet distinctive smell. But a very close second is the tried and true rose. I love a rose so much, my daughter and I got matching tattoos of a rose just a couple of months ago. It seems fitting since we are both equal parts lovely and prickly! It also seems appropriate to perfectly pair the strange Plant a Flower Day holiday with Tiffany Reisz’s The Rose. If you’ve not read The Rose, let me warn you right now to buckle up buttercups!
The Rose is the second book in Reisz’s The Red series. The Red series is best described as erotic fantasy, and since this is Tiffany Reisz we are talking about, rest assured she has both erotic and fantasy well researched and explicitly explained. Now, you don’t have to read book #1, The Red before reading The Rose, but you should know, Lia, our heroine in The Rose is the daughter of Mona, the heroine in The Red. Lia comes from a sexually free-spirited family, or maybe that should read, sexually free, AND spirited family! They also happen to be ridiculously wealthy, which is always a boon! Upon her college graduation, Lia is presented with a special gift by her adoring father. A fan of Greek mythology, he gives her a beautiful wine cup. It’s not just any old wine glass, this is a rare artifact decorated with roses that ends up being the Rose kylix. No, this is far from an ordinary cup. It was once used in temple ceremonies of Eros, the Greek god of erotic love, and has the power to bring the most intimate sexual fantasies to life.
August Bowman, a guest at Lia’s graduation party and antique enthusiast like her father, explains the complexities, dangers, and surprises drinking from the cup entails. A bit older than Lia and far too handsome to be anything but trouble, delicious, sexy trouble, August sets about winning Lia’s trust in hopes of convincing her to give the potentially dangerous cup to him. Have no fear, Lia comes from hardy stock that doesn’t scare easily. She ends up taking a journey with August that will make your toes curl. Boy howdy can Tiffany Reisz write scintillating erotic prose! I will forever be amazed how Reisz can write something I usually would not get hot and bothered by in a way that does indeed get me all kinds of hot and bothered! Add that incredible amount of sexual energy to the painstakingly researched Greek mythology on the pages of this book, and you have something unique and exciting.
Watching Lia and August interact, not just on a sexual level but also on a character development level, is a joy. Taking one for the team and re-reading this book for this post was not a chore at all. The fantastical element surrounding the Greek mythology coupled with the erotic union of these two characters is a masterclass in unputdownable sensual reading. Reisz deserves all of the flowers for taking such a huge chance with this book. It is by far, one of the most unusual and exciting erotic books I’ve ever read, right up there with The Red. In honor of Plant a Flower Day, I would highly recommend we all take some time to read The Rose. The fertile soil of your dirty mind and your inquisitive heart will thank you for the journey!