Sweetmeats are recreational, legal drugs that cause mild hallucinations. However, the new one Sylva got is different, and she finds herself naked in a very realistic world. Her mentor Leander, a faun, binds her with vines and sets her three tasks: investigating the thoughts of a statue, surprising a sexually open-minded queen, and finding her own desire. In the end, she earns the title of nymph in a delightful picnic with her as appetizer, just before she returns to reality.
Garden Rules is a short supernatural themed erotic fantasy. The faun is a refreshing change from the currently omnipresent werewolves and vampires. The main theme of the story is finding out what you want, conquering your fears and acting upon your dreams, reflected in different levels of cooperation of the heroine: going along, participating and actually taking what she is looking for.
The story contains delightful scenes that made me smile several times. Unfortunately, it does not include too much background about either the world or the main character(s). It is recommended for readers of erotic romance that are comfortable with mild BDSM elements.
If you are into steampunk, give the second installation of the series, Raven Takes a Pearl a try: a raven winged scientist investigating the workings of the female body and heart.
[Bettina Thießen is a practising Wiccan, avid reader and occassional poet who lives with her two kids and her husband in Belgium. She has contributed to Bearing Torches: A Devotional Antholoty to Hekate published by the Bibliotheca Alexandrina.]