Genre: Contemporary
Menage: MF, FFM, MFM
Series: no
Stand Alone: yes
Re-issued/Re-edited: no
Length: 343 pages
Published by: self published
Published on: March 20th 2012

Twitter username: whatshaynewants


Some people will go to great lengths to get their research.

Riya O’Connell is working on her dissertation in Male Sexuality and decides to create a website called “The Barter System” where she requests applications from men around the country willing to participate in her research. She eventually narrows down her thousands of submissions to eight men.

They will give her viable data, cover her expenses while in their company, and ensure she reaches her next destination safely. In return, Riya will give them…whatever they want.

As her project progresses, Riya realizes she’s chosen the eight men in the country who would love her well and that she could easily love in return. Subject after subject is left behind with a small piece of her heart. Driven by her need to understand male sexuality, she refuses to quit no matter how difficult it becomes to keep going. Her presence creates a ripple effect over the lives of her subjects and paths cross that might not have been possible without her.

Finding where her heart ultimately belongs may be an education she didn’t plan on.


I started to hear about this story when I hosted my menage contest. Then it was from a very enthusiastic author’s fan who contacted me and encouraged me to read it and introduced me to the author directly. A little bug in the epub format delayed my reading but finally I read it. Believe me or not but it took me a week to read it! Not the author’s fault, mind you.

First I will compliment the author with the choices of characters. I enjoyed each and everyone of them and they were numerous.

It was a great story and deserves a 4 stars. I could not give a 5 stars and here are my main reason: the heroine was way too perfect in everything, in every situation, filling everyone’s need, the most beautiful, rich, humble, sweet, kind, selfless., generous.. I mean the list is endless. In every situation, she was flawless. I have a hard time to connect to heroine like that.

At the beginning it was cute. But when time passes and she met all those different guys with different needs, it was like impossible to believe. Each “project” was like a fairy tale. 1, cute. 2, nice. 3, really? .. at 4, I thought “not again!” It was the same story with different actors: meeting, sex, fall a bit in love, finding a woman to replace her when she leaves, moving on to the next and at peace with herself that she left a happy couple behind. Somehow, the author made sure that every single scenario, the heroine was never considered as a slut. In the end, I understood the title: The barter system: they gave, she gave, everyone was happy with the bargain 🙂

I had a little issue with credibility. In each scenario, she meet a guy that she previously agreed to screw in exchange of 2 surveys (which could have been done without the meeting but oh well). Each time she is met to stay a couple of days and move on. But each time, she meet the woman that will take her place permanently after her departure and guess what? no jealousy from the women except one but she is excused because she is latino and we all know that latino women have hot temper eh? Sorry but I just cannot buy that any woman would agree to let another woman screw her man with a smile and become even best friend with her because she pushed the man in her way. Nope. Once maybe, five times? heck no freaking way!

The part where they all go to a “ménage” exclusive club and each trio is soooo at ease and soooo open with each other that they have sex in front of each other. Maybe. With money, it could be possible. But for a girl who had 2 bad experience prior this project, I thought it was stretchy. Her friendship with Tawny is so open that they have no exhibition, they can “dance 10 hours in a row” without problem. They learned how to dance and could even compete to the world social dance champions. Really?

The visit to the jail was totally not credible. At this time, it was wayyyyyyyyyyyy over the top, sorry.

Now the great parts…

The story was very interesting because it was 7 stories in one. And this was totally perfect for the kind of week I had. I could read one story per evening. I fell hard for Lucas. I mean, really really hard. I even cried for Peter’s sake!!! Each man was lovable and totally the kind of man that we, woman, want to meet, love and keep. But Lucas got me deep. *sigh* Funny but if you read all the reviews, Lucas is the one each fell hard… I was no exception!

So how can I enjoy a book with obviously big credibility issues?

I felt good when I turned the last page. It was a fairy tale ending and at this point I was looking for a closure. I am surprised that she was not pregnant though. I was ready for this last line 🙂

This book has a lot of sex. You will not be disappointed in this area. You’ll find a lot of MF action, some FFM and MFM.

I certainly recommend this book if you like your heroine represented as a good fairy, totally perfect inside and out. But I will more recommend the book for the male heroes… those are truly the ones that justify you reading the book 🙂

Overall Review: 4 stars

Characters: 5
Plot: 3
Sex Heat: 4
Equality Level: 5
Credibility: 2
Originality: 4
Editing (poor/fair/good): good

You can buy HERE.


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About Mary's Ménages Reviews

I read, review, beta read and blog about erotic ménages romances since 2005. Welcome to my world! :)

One response

  1. Sharon says:

    Are there going to be more books of the Barter System? Books 1-7 were great!