My novel, The Pet Shop, is a modern retelling of Beauty and the Beast, and my retelling the story with the use of human Pets has raised a few hackles (deliberate choice of words). At first I thought most of the hackle-raising was because we live in a world where we're constantly trying to separate ourselves from our animal nature. In fact the very mention of animal nature can raise a few hackles. We live in an age where everything gets cleaned, waxed, polished, shaved and deodorized, and sex is spoken of in euphemisms, in spite of all our claims of sexual sophistication.
But the story of Beauty and the Beast isn't about down and dirty animal sex. The story is about seeing through the eyes of the other and growing to love that otherness. And though there's plenty of lusty, down and dirty sex in The Pet Shop, ultimately the story is a very tender love story. The fairy tale and my retelling of it are both stories about seeing the true nature of a person, with all their flaws and neuroses, and loving them anyway. And the story is about trusting someone enough to allow oneself to be loved in spite of those flaws and shortcomings. Tino/Vincent is both beautiful and beastly, and Stella learns to love both. But a part of Stella's journey to love is also discovering and embracing her own dual nature.
In the fairy tale, the beast is fierce and frightening, but I chose to add a bit of kink and make my beast a human Pet because there's nothing that must be more trusting or more at the mercy of humans than a pet. A part of what we love most about pets is that we're allowed to stroke the fur of the lion when our cat deigns to sit on our lap, or we're allowed to walk next to the wolf, when we walk our dog in the park. Sometime in our history a taming occurred and wild animals trusted us enough to become our friends. In doing so, they tamed us a little as well.
At some point in every true love relationship the same thing happens. We allow ourselves to be vulnerable, we allow ourselves to trust. Then once we trust enough, we reveal ourselves flaws and all and allow ourselves to be tamed, allow ourselves to love and be loved. The beauty of such a relationship is that we go willingly to that place of tameness, but we take our wildness with us because in a true love relationship, the wildness is as much a part of us as our willingness to lay with our head in someone's lap. And it's as much loved. That's what I wanted to convey in The Pet Shop. The story is not just Beauty and the Beast, but it's also the beauty in the beast, the two in balance, both tame and wild.
An erotic novel by best-selling author K D Grace.
In appreciation for a job well done, STELLA JAMES 's boss sends her a pet – a human pet. The mischievous TINO comes straight from THE PET SHOP complete with a collar, a leash, and an erection. Stella soon discovers the pleasure of keeping Pets, especially this one, is extremely addicting.
Obsessed with Tino and with the reclusive philanthropist, VINCENT EVANSTON, who looks like Tino, but couldn't be more different, Stella is drawn into the secret world of The Pet Shop. As her animal lust awakens, Stella must walk the thin line that separates the business of pleasure from the more dangerous business of the heart or suffer the consequences.
K D Grace was born with a writing obsession. It got worse once she actually learned HOW to write. There's no treatment for it. It's progressive and chronic and quite often interferes with normal, everyday functioning. She might actually be concerned if it wasn't so damned much fun most of the time.
K D's erotic romance novel, The Initiation of Ms Holly, published by Xcite Books, is now available everywhere.
Her erotica has been published with Xcite Books, Mammoth, Cleis Press, Black Lace, Erotic Review, Ravenous Romance, Sweetmeats Press and Scarlet Magazine.
Her second novel, The Pet Shop, also published by Xcite Books, is out now.
Find out more about K D Grace on her website, http://kdgrace.co.uk. She's also on Facebook and Twitter.
Check out KD Grace's interview on THE PET SHOP at The Romance Reviews (click here) and get a chance to win 2 downloads of the book!