Official Review: Barely Ecstatic by N. Scoto Bowen

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joshfee77
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Latest Review: Barely Ecstatic by N. Scoto Bowen

Official Review: Barely Ecstatic by N. Scoto Bowen

Post by joshfee77 » 01 Feb 2019, 19:46

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Barely Ecstatic" by N. Scoto Bowen.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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Barely Ecstatic by N. Scoto Bowen is a novel about the world of female pole dancing. Cobey Muller is an 80-year-old American trucking magnate who partners with Dollars'n Gents, an adult entertainment magazine, to run a pole dancing contest. Named the Pole Ride, it has a prize pool of a million dollars to share between the top three contestants. For Cobey, the allure of pole dancing is not the sexual aspect but the artistic merit: the clean, smooth lines of a nude female body in motion. He finds an extraordinary pole dancer, Folly, and convinces her to film a promotional video in the mobile studio built into his truck trailer. He then sets about recruiting other exceptional pole dancers for the contest. But the word is out, and a criminal wants to enter their own contestant and fix her to win for their own financial gain. $700,000 is a big first prize...

Firstly, I have no particular interest in reading about pole dancing. I chose to read this book purely based on its author, N. Scoto Bowen, who also wrote The Dagger With Two Blades which I read for Online Book Club recently. Here, again, I was not disappointed. Bowen has a very readable writing style and knows his characters well. He includes plenty of conflict and interesting plot developments to keep the reader's interest. Even though the events in this book are low-key against my usual diet of murders and mayhem, Bowen proves with Barely Ecstatic that a talented writer can write successfully in any genre they choose.

Bowen's writing style features nice simple sentences. He describes women stripping and dancing without being lewd or lascivious about nudity or female body parts. The character development is strong; I got to know each main character well. A good example of character consistency is when Cobey talks to his girlfriend Ginger about surfing: "The surfboard makes a beautiful line when it slices the wave." This fits with his love of clean lines and artistic movements, which is his main reason for the Pole Ride contest. Cobey is a confident man, and his relationships with the various women in the book - especially pole dancer Ginger, sixty years his junior - include plenty of interesting dynamics.

There are obstacles, intrigue, and suspense included, particularly with a criminal element looking to use the contest for their own personal gain. Also, Cobey travels between states in his truck, so we get some great coverage of America. The dialogue sounds realistic, too. The English spoken by one contestant, Tatiana Yevchenko, seems right for a Russian not quite fluent in English. For example: "I have manager. He has friends in U.S.A. They said him to send me."

The only issue preventing a perfect 4-star rating for this book is its minor typographical errors, which are usually only missing punctuation. Therefore, I must rate Barely Ecstatic 3 out of 4 stars. I would recommend this book to those interested in the art of pole dancing, but I also feel that might limit its audience unnecessarily. In truth, if you love a great, well-told story, you should read this or any of N. Scoto Bowen's other books. I guarantee they won't disappoint.

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Barely Ecstatic
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Post by Susmita Biswas » 04 Feb 2019, 23:41

Even today people don't consider pole dance as an art form. It falls in the bad category. A book about it can start the protest.

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Post by Nyambura Githui » 05 Feb 2019, 00:52

I have always been fascinated by pole dancing, maybe because of the flexibility they have. Great review.

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Post by kandscreeley » 05 Feb 2019, 08:38

I just can't imagine a book centered entirely around pole dancing. It's not a subject that most authors choose to write about, except perhaps in erotic fiction. I admire the author for turning this into something more than that. Still, it's not something I would read. Thanks.
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Post by kdstrack » 05 Feb 2019, 09:59

Following an author can be interesting. I enjoyed how you pointed out the author's portrayal of the non-English speaker in the story. Often they will begin with broken English, but then the author will give them fluency later on! Great insights in this review. Thanks.

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Post by Jessacardinal » 05 Feb 2019, 22:34

I have to admit, having read many of your reviews, I was immediately surprised at your choice to read this book. It sounds like the author succeeded quite tastefully in writing about such a taboo subject. As always, you have presented a beautifully written review!
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Post by Delaney35 » 06 Feb 2019, 19:31

I think it is wonderful that Bowen manged to write this book in such a respectful manner. I have read a few of his other books but have avoided this one due to the content, however after reading this review I will have to give it a try.

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Post by Chrystal Oaks » 08 Feb 2019, 00:37

It's hard to comprehend; a book about pole dancing without erotica. For me the two are synonymous. I'm curious to read from Cobey's perspective and to better understand the difference. Thanks for the great review!

:eusa-think:

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Post by Eva Darrington » 09 Feb 2019, 12:57

I admire your faith in the author, allowing you to experience subject matter that wasn't in your usual genre. I was drawn in by the title. Clever. I hope the author tidies up the errors. Then it sounds like this would be quite a good book. I enjoyed reading your review!
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Latest Review: Barely Ecstatic by N. Scoto Bowen

Post by joshfee77 » 10 Feb 2019, 01:38

Susmita Biswas wrote:
04 Feb 2019, 23:41
Even today people don't consider pole dance as an art form. It falls in the bad category. A book about it can start the protest.
True, but it is an extremely physical and challenging form of dance, very gymnastic in nature, taking great strength and fitness to perform at the level of the women in the book. Thanks for commenting!

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Latest Review: Barely Ecstatic by N. Scoto Bowen

Post by joshfee77 » 10 Feb 2019, 01:39

Nyambura Githui wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 00:52
I have always been fascinated by pole dancing, maybe because of the flexibility they have. Great review.
Thanks. Yeah, there is definitely a lot of strength, fitness and flexibility involved.

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Latest Review: Barely Ecstatic by N. Scoto Bowen

Post by joshfee77 » 10 Feb 2019, 01:43

kandscreeley wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 08:38
I just can't imagine a book centered entirely around pole dancing. It's not a subject that most authors choose to write about, except perhaps in erotic fiction. I admire the author for turning this into something more than that. Still, it's not something I would read. Thanks.
I was surprised, too, and as I said, I chose this book based on the author alone. Bowen did a great job developing a character-driven story out of somewhat taboo subject matter. It says on his website that he likes to write about unusual or marginalised people outside of the generally accepted norms of society, and he does it well. Thanks.

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Latest Review: Barely Ecstatic by N. Scoto Bowen

Post by joshfee77 » 10 Feb 2019, 01:45

kdstrack wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 09:59
Following an author can be interesting. I enjoyed how you pointed out the author's portrayal of the non-English speaker in the story. Often they will begin with broken English, but then the author will give them fluency later on! Great insights in this review. Thanks.
Thanks! Usually if I find a really good writer, I will take any excuse to read another one of their books, irrespective of the subject matter. Bowen is definitely a cut above the pack.

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Latest Review: Barely Ecstatic by N. Scoto Bowen

Post by joshfee77 » 10 Feb 2019, 01:52

Jessacardinal wrote:
05 Feb 2019, 22:34
I have to admit, having read many of your reviews, I was immediately surprised at your choice to read this book. It sounds like the author succeeded quite tastefully in writing about such a taboo subject. As always, you have presented a beautifully written review!
Thanks! I will generally read just about anything by an author who has impressed me before. If Stephen King wrote a book about wallpaper paste, I'd be all over it! Of course, I'd know it wouldn't be just wallpaper paste, but some sticky glue from hell that possessed anyone who used it and made them do horrible things to their nearest and dearest... :shock: Anyway, you get the idea! :lol2:

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Latest Review: Barely Ecstatic by N. Scoto Bowen

Post by joshfee77 » 10 Feb 2019, 01:55

Delaney35 wrote:
06 Feb 2019, 19:31
I think it is wonderful that Bowen manged to write this book in such a respectful manner. I have read a few of his other books but have avoided this one due to the content, however after reading this review I will have to give it a try.
Yeah, obviously there is plenty of female nudity in this book, but it is handled tastefully, and it's really a plot- and character-driven story, very well done. Thanks for commenting!

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