I’m forty, flabby, and frustrated. Don’t get me wrong, I have a good home, a decent job, and great children. I had a loving marriage for twenty years where we had our ups and downs. It wasn’t perfect; but it wasn’t awful. Then he died.
After the grief took its course, and the reality of my life set in, I grew frustrated. It wasn’t the bills or the struggle to keep my interest in my work. It was life without a man – the only man I’d been with for twenty years. And before you go all feminist on me, it isn’t that I can’t be an independent woman, but there are certain areas where a man is necessary.
You need a fuck buddy, my friend said.
I didn’t even know what that meant.
Is it friends with benefits?, I asked.
Better, you don’t even have to be friends, she offered.
Boy, did I need an education in the modern workings of dating, and sex.
A coming-of-an-older-age novel.
Something new from L.B. Dunbar — a stand alone!
L.B. Dunbar’s latest release, The Sex Education of Me, provides an honest look
into what life is like for individuals in their early forties and how love, intimacy, and risk-taking vary for every person due to his/her experiences in the past and what s/he is willing to invest in after his/her hearts have been tormented and broken.
The title of Emme and Merek’s story is a great play on words that reinforces the fact that BOTH of them – Mary Elizabeth (Emme’s real name) and Merek Elliott – learn a significant amount about sex, desire, and how the messiness of life just might be what they’re looking for regardless of what they’ve thought in the past.
Emme’s “relationship” with Merek was just supposed to be a way to get release from the sexual tension that she’s felt since her husband’s death a year ago but what it turns out to be is not only a sexual awakening of sorts but also a way for Emme to redefine herself…to rediscover her own identity and to rebuild her self-esteem that has been suppressed by her late husband’s disapproval for too many years to count.
Merek’s education comes in the form of a 42 year old woman who doesn’t know how to separate a physical connection from an emotional one. Merck’s prided himself on being emotionally unavailable with all of his conquests; he refuses to give another woman more than his body and a release because the one time he did so, his heart was destroyed. But when he meets Emme, he realizes that he just might be ready to take another step besides the one that involves sex; the only problem is that there’s a bevy of mixed messages from both sides, making an already complicated situation – due to their respective pasts and presents – that much more messy because neither truly know where they stand with one another.
The Sex Education of Me illustrates the difficulties of starting over…of putting oneself back out into the dating world and continuing to push forward even though the past wants to hold you back. L.B. Dunbar does a great job of showcasing the Emme and Merek’s emotional highs and lows as they try to figure out what they truly want and mean to one another and if they’re willing and able to take a ride that could very well change who they are and what they’re willing to endure in order to start a new life as new people with new hopes and new dreams that include each other.
A complimentary copy was provided in exchange for an honest review.
4 Poison Apples
L.B. Dunbar loves the original legend of King Arthur. Inspired by this classic tale, she pulled over to the side of the road to take notes when it hit her that if King Arthur lived today, he’d be a rock star. A lover of fairy tales, myths, legends, and anything with happily ever after, she loves to read and write contemporary romance. Her Legendary Rock Stars series is complete with the final tale: The Trials of Guinevere DeGrance, but the story began with The Legend of Arturo King. She also wrote The Sensations Collection, which includes five stand alones based on the five senses in a small town setting near Lake Michigan. Raised on one side of that lake, she grew up in Michigan, but now lives on the other side, in Chicago. Mother to four, wife to the one and only, and teacher to hundreds of former students, she looks forward to sharing more stories in the future.