Looking For Some Touch

KZS_LookingForSomeTouch_coverlgTitle: Looking For Some Touch
Author: K.Z. Snow
Publisher: http://www.loose-id.com
Buy link: Amazon.com
Genre: Paranormal Suspense/Urban Fantasy, BDSM, GLBT (M/M/M/M )
Length: Novel
Rating: 4.50 stars out of 5

THE BLURB

Pablo Creed–amateur poet, professional whore, and upstanding citizen of the Utopian Metroplex of Regenerie–wants a new job. The all-male Coven of Three–a trio of mismatched wonder-workers who live in Regenerie’s subterranean Undercity–needs a “Touch” to sexually spark its collective energy.

In danger of being assigned to a sadistic VIP client, Pablo applies for the position instead. He knows his way around the human body. He can do what they need. What he doesn’t count on is his immediate, intense attraction to the gorgeous Win, one of the Coven’s members. Or the immediate, intense hostility of Tole, another member, who resents that attraction. And he certainly didn’t expect to be drawn into the center of a bizarre missing-person investigation that threatens his life.

It turns out the Coven of Three are not the magicians they seem to be. That revelation will either send him fleeing to the desolate Interzone…or taking a chance on the sublimely sensual Win, who’s more unusual than anybody Pablo has ever known.

THE REVIEW

This is my first taste of K.Z. Snow’s writing and immediately I realized why she is so popular. Her
characters are carefully crafted and her world building is phenomenal in this futuristic society which has clear physical demarcations between those who live in the Undercity and the Overcity. I was thrust into Pablo’s world as he hung out with the other “givers,” another word for prostitute, awaiting their clients. He had been working the streets for 6 years because at 24 he had no other employment opportunity.

Pablo was desperate to escape the clutches of one of his clients, a Vip who had beaten him badly during a one night stand and who had expressed a desire to have him assigned on a permanent basis as his personal giver which, if approved by Pablo’s employer, the state, would mean the end of life as he knew it. He escapes to the Undercity to apply for a job as a Touch for 3 Magicians. It appears that they were really looking for a female as was made clear to him by Tole a member of the group who resents Pablo, but when Pablo sees gorgeous Win, one of the Magicians, his libido goes into overdrive and his feelings seem to be returned, to the extent that Win can experience human emotions. Turns out that the Coven of Three is much more than previously advertised and Pablo finds out that his new bosses were very powerful paranormal beings. Would this discovery be so devastating that Pablo would not want to stay in his new job?

This is not your usual run of the mill paranormal tale as it has futuristic elements as well. The thrust of the book is that three paranormal beings charged with keeping the peace need a human to keep them grounded, and help them understand the perspective of the people in their charge. The story had more than enough content to keep me engaged although I did wonder about the amount of detailed information in the book regarding this new world. I thought that the author did a good job defining the society in which Pablo lived through detailed descriptions of his environment, which was important early on in the story, but during the latter stages perhaps there could have been a little less telling and more showing. I would have liked more of the book devoted to the relationship between the four characters since the thrust of being a Touch was to establish synergy between Pablo, Win, Zee and Tole. This didn’t happen until the end of the book and in my opinion it might have been more effective earlier on in the story and would have made this an even more incredible adventure. I wish to stress, however, that I found the plot quite original, engrossing and unusual and I really liked the characters.

My last comment is about Pablo the main protagonist in the story. On first reading of the book I couldn’t understand why he would return to the same psychopath Vip who had beaten him (and who was his reason for running to the Undercity), just because he suspected him of a crime. When I re-read the book, it was clear that Pablo felt he would serve a greater good by returning since he didn’t feel threatened by Pie Man, the Vip, because he assumed he could take him out as physically he was stronger, although in this case he was wrong. Following up on his hunch about Pie Man’s real identity and his connection to the crime proved to have consequences he could not have foreseen.

To wrap up, I loved Looking for Some Touch. The characters were well drawn and three dimensional although Tole seemed a bit emotional for someone of his race. The sex moved the plot along and was hot, erotic and very innovative and the smexing was quite appropriate. The world building was some of the best I have read and the plot worked. However, as a reader I had to pay attention because the story was complex and the characters sometimes acted irrationally. K.Z. Snow did a great job on a unique story and I certainly look forward to other books in this world if the rumours are true that this is part of a series.

Update: Since writing this review I found out that Looking for Some Touch is Book 1 in a new series by K.Z. Snow (I should have checked) and that the next book, Seeking Something Wicked, will be released on February 24. I can’t wait to read Book 2 as I really want to find out what’s next for these characters to whom I became attached in Touch. I also now understand the emphasis on world building in Book 1, which makes more sense as it is important to give the reader more structure in a series because they will be returning time and again to that world. I have also updated my rating, based on this new information. Great job KZ.

Author

I live in Canada and I love big dogs, music, movies, reading and sports – especially baseball

20 comments

  • KZ
    Since reading the comments about Touch being book 1 of a series, I updated my review to incorporate this new information and I have modified some of my earlier comments.

    But what I said about the importance of blurbs still stands! Readers have limited time to decide where to spend their $ and the more flashy blurbs usually win the day. I have been caught by brilliant blurbs by a couple of writers and found out to my dismay that the story was a piece of crap.

    Reply
  • K.Z.
    I’m awake now.*g* Jeez, I had no idea I was creating such a firestorm when I mentioned just a couple of things. I made many positive comments about the book starting with I loved LFST and the world building was some of the best I have read and the plot worked.

    My difficulty was that I had no idea this was going to be part of a series. If I had, I would have understood that you were setting the stage for the upcoming books. (Btw I do know that pubs don’t like to mention the word “series” until they’re sure the author will deliver on the remaining books).

    Re my comment about Pablo going off by himself, I was really puzzled as to why why he did what he did, since it seemed to be out of sync with what the character would do. However, I do realize that it was a good bridge for what followed.

    Re blurbs, I wish that authors realize how important they are to readers. They are sometimes the only information readers have to help them make a decision on whether or not to buy a book. I don’t read excerpts (and a lot of readers don’t) so publishers should try to be helpful and not insert inappropriate words into blurbs without the author’s permission. The word “bisexual” gave me pause because I thought it might be a M/M/F book (and I do so not like those recently for my own reasons which I believe I mentioned on the blog before), but because I liked the concept of the alien world I went ahead and bought the book despite this.

    I love series and follow quite a few of them because I get attached to the characters. And yes, if I were a writer I would always be character driven. As Josh L says in MOM,”it’s our characters readers fall in love with, not plot twists .. If the reader doesn’t care about the characters, nothing else matters ….”

    I spent a fair amount of time on the review because I wanted to give the readers a sense of what I thought worked in the book and my overall impressions. I can now understand why so much time was spent on the details in your world building because it was important to give readers a sense of time and place when they returned to the next book in the series. Please remind me when Seeking Something Wicked is released because I would love to know Tole better. Oh, and that sex scene at the end of the book – blew me away *g*

    Re sex scenes in general in erotic books, I can take them or leave them. If I want to read porn I know where to go. Did I say that?? What I said was I would have loved a little more smexing, which could mean a little more “lovemaking” not just sex. Have I covered everything? If not, please let me know.

    On blurbs one more time, I had no idea that the pub could change your blurb and publish a new version without pre-approval. (Another note for my file for my next interview with publishers).

    Reply
  • Hiya, Jenre! It was really nice of you to post your opinion.

    I truly take all of this to heart. The older I get and the more I write–and, damn, I love it–the more I realize how much can be learned from other devoted readers.

    Reply
  • I’ve just finished reading this book and really enjoyed it. I agree with you, Wave, that I would have liked to have seen more time with the four main characters, but not necessarily at the expense of the world building. It wouldn’t have hurt the story to have had a few extra scenes.

    Having said that, I’m glad to read that the sequel will continue to look at the relationships within the group. Because it was set in a different city, I thought it would be looking at different characters, but obviously I was wrong about that.

    I do urge anyone not to be put off the blurb, because you would be missing out on a marvellous book. To be honest, I’ve stopped paying much attention to blurbs and use the extract to decide whether or not I would like a book. This could be risky, but I’ve discovered a number of great new authors that way. Also looking at the author’s website/blog/LJ (if you can find it!) is another way of getting the author’s view on what their book is about and not the publishers.

    Reply
  • Thanks, Shawn, for backing me up! 🙂 Blurbs are always a bitch, no matter who dreams them up. I think most authors would agree it’s incredibly difficult to sum up a novel in 200 words and make it universally appealing. Writing blurbs is an art in and of itself, like painting miniatures. Damned if anybody has it mastered.

    Hi again, Kris! The reason Looking for Some Touch wasn’t promoted as the first book in a series is that publishers, I believe, are generally wary of making such a claim unless and until they’re sure an author can deliver subsequent books. (I faced the same hurdle at Ellora’s Cave with the fantasy cycle I have there.) It’s confusing, but I’m afraid few authors have any control over this.

    Yes, a series always requires some patience on the part of the reader. Not every detail of every character’s backstory can be coughed up in one big spew…so to speak. (Yuck, what an image!) And that’s especially true when there are more than one or two main characters.

    It’s often the case, too, that imparting certain bits of information too soon can constitute a kind of spoiler. Pacing is everything when it comes to fleshing out background — whether that background relates to the world as a whole or to individual characters.

    In the case of Utopia-X, characters will come forward and recede and come forward again, maybe in different contexts. They’ll be revealed gradually. The major players in one novel will be minor or supporting players in the next, and so on. And they’ll of course interact in different ways, depending on the plot.

    I should tell you all that I’ll be the guest at Clare London’s blog this Thursday. I’ll be talking about paranormal and fantasy erotic-romance fiction in relation to contemporaries. Please stop by and offer your thoughts. I really do love hearing from readers, reviewers, and other writers. No matter what they have to say, it’s always enlightening!

    Reply
  • Great to hear from you, K Z!

    Being a (rabid) fan of urban fantasy/fantasy etc, I am v. used to series and the way they develop from book to book. I think if I’d known from the outset that this was part of a series a lot of my questions/concerns about wanting ‘more’ (character info, back story) would have been allayed.

    It’s interesting what both you and Shawn say about blurbs. I had a feeling this was the case – sometimes the tone of a blurb can be totally different to the book, not to mention mistakes in terminology, storylines…

    Lookiong forward to Feb 24.

    Reply
  • You are so right, K.Z., on the blurbs. I wanted to pipe in here and say that often times the blurb is redone by the pubs and there is little an author can do. Just sayin’

    Reply
  • Oh, by the way, I had referred to Pablo as a “professional” whore, not a “bisexual” whore.

    Blurbs get messed with by TPTB, that’s all I can tell ya.

    Reply

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