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This Viral BookTok Recommendation Is Better Than It Should Be (Part One)

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CW: Rape

I have little patience for books that “go viral,” especially on a platform like TikTok, where the readers by and large seem to care more about whether or not the cover is going to look good on their bookshelf ringed with white Christmas lights than about whatever is in the actual text. For example, one of the big BookTok sensations was that Maas rip-off, From Barf and Ass, that turned out to be racist, anti-semitic, straight-up qanon propaganda written by a thieving, plagiarizing, list-gaming, review-buying, way-too-flattering-to-the-point-of-catfishing-selfie-posting cunt whose name escapes me.

But weirdly, two BookTok recs that I picked up solely to revel in what I assumed would be head-on garbage truck collisions, turned out to be way, way better than they should have been.

Yes. I am talking about the blue alien two-pronged dick book and the minotaur jack-off story.

Look. You know me. You know that I say what I think about stuff. Like, see the above lying, two-faced, fugly cunt reference. Remember, the new policy is “if I think it, I say it.” No brakes. So, I’m not blowing smoke up your collective asses here.

These books are, against all reason and logic…REALLY GOOD. But be advised, this is not a spoiler-free review.

In this post, let’s talk about the blue alien peeeeeeeenus. Ruby DIxon’s Ice Planet Barbarians.

During the days of Alexa Riley and the KU scam squad, I was super suspicious of Ruby. First, because she’s a pen name for an author who, at the time, at least, associated closely with Alexa Riley and other KU scammers. I was keeping track of releases from about four authors at that time because of their associations with known scammers and the pace of their releases. But while the pattern of Alexa Riley’s releases ultimately proved them to be straight-up cons, I eventually concluded that “Ruby” and her other pen name were just quick writers.

That didn’t mean I wasn’t ready to laugh my ass off at how bad a book called Ice Planet Barbarians, from a series that includes a novella with the title Ice, Ice Babies, absolutely had to be.

Reader: I consumed the first three in two days.

the special edition cover of Ice Planet Barbarians. A long-haired woman with a spear stands in front of a blue humanoid male figure whose tail wraps around her.

So, let me break it down for you: book one, Ice Planet Barbarians (seen above with its nifty new cover from Berkley) opens with the heroine, Georgie, getting scooped up by violent, horrible aliens who are collecting young, fertile human females and transporting them like livestock. Some of them are frozen in stasis chambers, but Georgie and some others are shoved in a cell with a bucket to shit in and nothing else in the way of survival. When Georgie rallies the non-stasised women to attack their captors, the aliens dump their cargo on a planet that the human women refer to as “Not-Hoth.” They’re discovered by sexy blue aliens who live primitive lives in caves…and whose species is on the verge of extinction due to their lack of fertile females.

“This sounds like something I could read on Literotica, Jenny,” you may be thinking. And to be fair to the writers over at Literotica, yeah. Because there is excellent science-fiction erotica on there, too. But there’s a reason why those stories are well-written, and that’s because, just like Ruby Dixon, the authors are clearly not writing these stories for other people. The moment I started Ice Planet Barbarians, I recognized that it was written by someone familiar with and who enjoys the science fiction genre and who wrote this story entirely for herself. The fact that enough people enjoyed it to make it go viral? That’s just a bonus.

The worldbuilding in this series is incredible. I remained somewhat skeptical about the idea of these savage blue aliens running around their native planet like Avatar. I was thinking, oh great, this is one of those books where “blue people” are stand-ins for indigenous people so that white ladies can get their racist rocks off now that historical romances of that ilk are looked down upon. I was pleasantly surprised to learn, in the well-paced unfolding of details, that the Sa-Khui aren’t native to the planet at all. They’re actually the survivors of a spaceship crash who have been stranded on the hostile, barren planet for generations.

This series has, thus far, subverted all of my expectations. I thought for sure there would be an “evil” woman of the tribe who tried to “steal” what rightfully belongs to the white heroine. Instead, there’s an unhappily mated Sa-Khui female who, yes, tries to lure a Sa-Khui male away from a human woman, and the heroine is understanding and feels bad for her but still establishes boundaries.

When they crash landed on the planet and were found by the Sa-Khui, I was like, “Here we go. Time to get rapey.” Nope. The Sa-Khui not only respect the human women and welcome them into their society, (in the second book, Barbarian Alien, the heroine becomes a hunter with the larger, stronger males because they recognize her skill) but the punishment for endangering a female is steep: banishment to the frozen wastes of Not-Hoth, away from the protection of the tribe. They don’t just need the women to breed for them, and they don’t infantilize them. When female characters offer suggestions in emergency situations, they don’t have to fight to have their voices heard. And when one Sa-Khui doesn’t “resonate” (a mating signal caused by a parasite all residents of Not-Hoth need to survive– I told you, the worldbuilding is fantastic) with the human woman he falls for? He tries to respectfully court her and doesn’t care if they never get the urge to merge.

So, what about these blue weiners we’ve heard about? Well, the big, scary, super muscular and literally horny aliens? They have big, scary, super cocks with a little bonus, a “spur” that hits all the right spots in whatever position they choose. Especially doggy-style, which the Sa-Khui can’t do with their own species because they have tails.

That’s right. They can dp, solo, with a human.

I do have to say that one trope that remained, one I really hate, didn’t get subverted in the first three books. After a somewhat graphic gang-rape by the kidnapper aliens, one of the women is traumatized beyond her capacity to function and then eventually becomes a casualty of the planet. That was a bummer, because like, the rape could have just not been in the book at all. If you want to raise the stakes, it doesn’t have to be one of those “killed…or worse” scenarios. And if I had stopped there (which I almost did), I would have missed out on a really inventive set of love stories, so it’s a shame that Dixon included it.

If you hate baby books, you probably won’t enjoy these as much as I did, since the concept of “resonating” makes everybody want to procreate, but if you’ve got even a slight breeding kink and you’re into sexing up aliens with weird cocks? You’re gonna want to check these out. Are they extremely cis and straight and white? Absolutely; I can’t remember even one not-white woman being mentioned (that’s not to say I didn’t just miss the description as I speed devoured these like raspberry zingers), and the concept of males and females and breeding always skews to the cis. But so does a lot of science fiction, mostly written by men, and definitely not this inventive or sex-positive. In general? I take what the fuck I can get from science fiction erotica.

I’m only recommending the first three books at the moment, though, because those are the ones I’ve read and liked. I’ve read the first four, but the fourth one was a no for me. I just didn’t care for the hero and I thought the heroine’s motivation to stay with him was unconvincing after what we’d learned about the Sa-Khui in the other books.

But that’s not going to stop me from reading the rest of them. I’m going to keep on with the series until I start having nightmares about drowning in a vat of blue dicks. It’s for sure not going to stop me from snatching up the companion novellas. Or from getting the signed special edition paperback that Berkley is releasing, because in this one, shining, beautiful moment, in this unlikely cosmic accident, an author whose work went viral and snagged a traditional publishing contract actually deserved it.

Check back for my review of the minotaur hand-job book because I will have all sorts of stuff to say about that, too. Boy howdy, am I gonna have stuff to say about that.

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Here for the first time because you’re in quarantine and someone on Reddit recommended my Fifty Shades of Grey recaps? Welcome! Consider checking out my own take on the Billionaire BDSM genre, The Boss. Find it on AmazonB&NSmashwords, iBooks, and Radish!

14 Comments

  1. Lacey
    Lacey

    I was able to enjoy the first five or six of these, but then they just got to predictable. I am not saying I’m a hipster, but I read these in the old cover. Lol!

    Re: the Maas ripoff, can anyone clarify? I don’t want to accidentally pick it up.

    October 4, 2021
    |Reply
    • Holly Black is the true fae queen neways
      Holly Black is the true fae queen neways

      I am likewise very curious about the Maas ripoff! I’m trying to imagine how nonstop fairy fucking would lead into qanon and I’m scared, lol.

      October 4, 2021
      |Reply
    • JennyTrout
      JennyTrout

      the title rhymes with what I called it here. I won’t mention the author or the book by name because fuck her that’s why. she doesn’t need the publicity, i’ve given her enough lol

      October 4, 2021
      |Reply
    • Al
      Al

      If you are morbidly curious, there’s an author that got an Onlyfans and who was a JHBC pick whose book stopped getting the JHBC treatment because she was desperate for attention and Jenny didn’t want to give her that attention.

      October 5, 2021
      |Reply
  2. D
    D

    Jenny, I sometimes forget that your blog exists (because I am a very forgetful person) and then I remember and I go through all your posts and have a wonderful time reading about whatever you decided to post about. Blue Alien Space Dicks? Fuck yeah. ♥

    October 5, 2021
    |Reply
  3. Q
    Q

    Holy Crap you know who Ruby is?!?! That’s amazing I’ve been trying to figure it out and can’t lol!

    October 7, 2021
    |Reply
    • Tez Miller
      Tez Miller

      Slide into my DMs on Twitter or email me (TezMillerOz gmail) and I’ll tell you 😉

      October 8, 2021
      |Reply
  4. Maya
    Maya

    From Barf and Ass is funny. Thanks for letting us know . I’ll definitely continue to avoid JLA’s stuff now.
    Morning Glory Milking Farm’s premise sounds really unusual to me. Definitely not a first foray into the genre type of book.

    October 17, 2021
    |Reply
  5. Leslie
    Leslie

    Holy crap. I’d somehow missed this dumpster fire of a person. Definitely won’t be buying anything by her ever.

    October 18, 2021
    |Reply
    • Leslie
      Leslie

      I’d managed to miss anything Jamie McGuire. Definitely won’t be purchasing any of her books now.

      October 18, 2021
      |Reply
  6. An
    An

    I read one of her books a million years ago and it was creepy. And annoying. Probably this one beautiful disaster.

    I’m not surprised that someone who idealizes such shitty relationships makes so many other terrible decisions.

    October 20, 2021
    |Reply
  7. Tia
    Tia

    What a news. Thanks for the reminder and warning, Jenny.

    October 28, 2021
    |Reply
  8. Can I just say I’m a bit confused? I just, looking through old blog posts you said that that author was really nice. You even put one of her series on your list of favourite series. I’m just curious what has changed. And like, exactly what is qanon etc with the books. I didn’t see it, so figure I just didn’t catch it and I’d love an analysis cause you write about books so well.

    November 20, 2021
    |Reply
    • Jenny Trout
      Jenny Trout

      it turns out that she ripped off several authors and the name thing was very likely intentional. the qanon thing was someone’s theory on twitter and it must have made sense to me at the time i wrote this post .

      November 21, 2021
      |Reply

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