Thursday Thankfulness: A Review and a Chat with Kat

Today, I am thankful for a lovely, thoughtful review from Sophie Sansregret of Evolved World.

This was not an easy read for me; but it was a difficult story told well. It’s a working reader’s book. Intelligent, subtle. Rife with love and anguish.

Ms Vitsky’s writing is smooth, the time shifts are beautifully sutured. As the story slips and slides through time and space, the reader may be reassured that a deft hand is at the helm. The Way Home is fraught with tension, much sorrow, and glimpses of joy so the writing must be particularly fine to get us through it all.

I am pleased to see that Ms Vitsky has trod a fresh path for DD novels and it’s thanks only to her excellent writing that The Way Home is such a successful book.

For those wondering, Nat and Kat’s relationship on a sexual level is entirely off the page. Their relationship is difficult, complex, and often confounding.

I found The Way Home a rewarding read but not “pleasurable” in the general reader-response sense of the term. Like the relationship between Kat and Nat, this is a book to be experienced but not necessarily “enjoyed”. By this I mean the following: It’s not a guilty pleasure. This is no simple text (they have their place too, but not for The Way Home). If you enjoy a spoon-feeding with your F/F DD, this is not the book for you. I clarify this point lest the reader see that this is F/F with spankings and expect a collegiate romp of bubble baths and Hello Kitty floggers, giggles and popcorn thereafter. No space for giggling titillation.

Wow. In a very few paragraphs, Sophie captured the essence of what I tried to accomplish in this book. It’s not an easy, fun escapist story (though I do enjoy writing those). The anguish is what made the writing so very difficult (and what made its sequel, Lighting the Way, so very tortured in its eight-month revising process), and yet it is a journey worth taking.

For me, The Way Home is a complicated story told simply. The most simply of any of my stories, with a soft-spoken, shy tone (after all, it is Kat who narrates). I sometimes worry that it is too simplistic in its telling, but then a review like this takes my breath away.

The most wonderful gift an author can receive is a thoughtful, intelligent critique of his or her work. As much as I enjoy hearing gushing plaudits (who doesn’t?), for a professional reviewer to zero in on the issues dearest to me…well, thank you, Sophie. Thank you for taking my firstborn seriously.

I had a little chat with Kat earlier, and I asked if she wanted to say anything today. She is rather puzzled by the review (not by the content, but that anyone is reading and reviewing the book), but she agreed to say a few words. Here she is.

Ana asked if I wanted to say something for Thankfulness today, in general or about the review. I think that Hello Kitty, bubble baths, and a collegiate romp sound very nice. I’m thankful that Sophie suggested it. Maybe I can talk to Natalie.

I’m not sure that I want a flogger, though. Actually, what is a flogger? It sounds scary.

Sophie is right that my relationship with Natalie is complicated. That it is difficult. But she is also right that there is joy.

Ana asked me what I am thankful for, and there are a lot of things. Natalie’s family. Natalie. That they say they are my family, too.

I’m thankful that Natalie and I do have joy. That I have joy.

After staying up all night to work on revisions for Lighting the Way, I agree with Kat. Their story is difficult to write, difficult to feel, difficult to process…and yet there is is so much joy.

I can hardly wait until I finally get to start writing Kat 3. There, the joy will start to truly blossom after a long, hard, dark road.

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