Friday, October 30, 2009

Failure to Thrive by Julesnerd

Failure to Thrive





Bella is sexually unfulfilled after four horrible encounters. She meets Edward Masen, and things begin to change. Edward is sexally insatiable and Bella has been told she's frigid. B/E/AH/AU/OOC. Rated M for a reason! Lemons to follow. Humor/Sarcasm


Failure to Thrive by Julesnerd is one of those rare stories where each element is developed to play with its counterparts perfectly, creating a synergetic effect. It is witty, smart and extremely well written. The humor is what gets you at first. For example, the therapists office abounds with irony:
You’ve got to be kidding me. First Cat Fancy and now gargantuan symbolic vagina paintings…uhh…subtle much? Methinks not!
This story is grown up and sexy, without being stiff or too ethereal. This is Twilight for the 20 and 30 something crowds (and older). The plot is actually very sweet and in many ways parallels Twilight. Bella has issues. Edward has issues. They meet. They have an instant attraction and decide to help each other overcome those problems.

The backstories give just enough of a framework to keep the story plausible. It's easy to see how two people who have desperately given up any hope of normalcy find some common ground and reach out for each other. Misery loves company, right? Instead of benign comfort, they find support, understanding and encouragement, all of which come in the form of spectacular lemons.

There is some apprehension from both of them. That fear of rejection and failure again. But the characters she develops are mature and realize that communication and honesty will guide them through this. To that end, the "Sexual Satisfaction Agreement" is priceless - and sweet at the same time. It shows that they realize this isn't rocket science but also that they take their responsibilities to each other seriously.

The smut is sincere and moving. Reading about her first real 'partnered' orgasm was so sweet, I almost felt like I was a voyeur watching to young lovers sharing their bodiedsfor the first time. The lust is building though. The lemons are getting hotter and there is a promise of explosive fusion of bodies and minds in the coming chapters. After a particularly successful lesson, Edward sums it up nicely:
“If I’m insatiable, and you’re multi-orgasmic….we might just actually satisfy each other. I hope you’re not all that fond of sleep . . "
As a matter of fact, Edward? No. When you and a bed are involved, I am not that fond of sleep. And I'm very much looking forward to being an insomniac at the hands of Julesnerd.

The start of this story provides us with a unique problem that brings our two favorite characters together - sexual dysfunction. IKR? Edward having a problem in the peen department?!? Blasphemy! But, like Emmy & Hopey have said, his problems sort of make him endearing in this fic.

Of course, Edward isn't the only one with problems - the title of the fic actually comes from Bella's trouble in the sexual arena. Through a quick decision on their parts, they both decide to "help" each other with their little (cough big cough) problems.

As the other girls have said, these characters aren't perfect - they are flawed and quirky and that seems to make them more real. While perfect characters certainly have their place, it's nice once in a while to see them depicted as real people, as they are much easier to relate to.

Now, for those that want a story with a realistic pace, I honestly can't say that this story is for you. It seemed to me that the two - especially for having sexual problems - progressed their relationship rather quickly, and that seemed very unrealistic to me. However, with the faster pace, that brings us the smut quicker. *snicker* And I know what a bunch of h00rs you are, so continue reading...

The way the erotic parts in this are told are definitely different than that of the rest of the fanfic out there. With Bella's "Failure to Thrive," she obviously hasn't felt these sort of reactions before. As such, she voices absolutely every feeling - every arousal and reaction her body has - and that in itself has the ability to affect the readers more so than when an author depicts the acts rather than the feelings surrounded by those.

One thing that I had a really hard time getting around besides the pace was the inner monologue of both the characters. I found it overbearing in most places and in turn it made this a bit difficult for me to read. I like thoughts to be interspersed throughout a chapter, whereas in this, sometimes they dominated the scene.

All in all, if you want a fun, quirky read and can get past the fast pace, you should give FtT a try.

3 out of 5 viagras from me.

I am a huge fan of this story! And was delighted when the pack chose to recc it this week!

The thing that makes or breaks a fic for me is the Edward. I know. I know. So predictable of me. Yes I confess he is the literary love of my life along with Mr James Potter, Mr Rochester & Sebastian (whose name I cannot remember from the ballet books I loved as a wee one) right, sorry I have gone off on one a wee bitty there.. Anyways. Edward is crucial to me. I cannot cope when a fic has a pants Edward. Nail him, nail me... LOL - you KNOW what I mean! SO: I love that in Failure to Thrive Edward is not PerfectWard. I think I have read so many fic's where he is Mr WonderfulWard. Faultless. Pristine. Whiter than white. OR he is naughtyWard. PromiscuousWard. SwaggerWard. 10GunSaluteWard.... & his flawless sexing saves the day - & yes I know they are not quite like that & in fact I do love a good doucheWard but love it when something different comes along. So this Edward is RealisticWard - still gorgeous, still loving, still an absolute dream boat... but he has a condition, a problem he is working through... He's kind of given up on sorting it out - as he really could do with someone to give him a *hand* with it as it were... ;) & thanks to some fortuitous plotting by his brother along comes Bella...

This story could read as contrived, as just an excuse for lots of smutty play between Bella & Edward.... BUT it does not. Instead we are treated to the loveliest of interplay's between Bella & Edward. They have a great connection. This adorably awkward chemistry that draws them together as they try to help one another and discover things about their own conditions, emotions and lives along the way. This is due to wonderful writing, the author pitches their interplay just right.

BUT. As this is the shack ~ I know you want to know about the sticky fun stuff! Its great. Very appropriate for the story.. Builds slowly with much of the attention on Bella at first - with great inner reflections from them both along the way. Edward's inner reflections come to the core in the latter chapters as the attention shifts to him. His anxieties, his pleasure, his longing to sustain and satisfy. The pleasure they both get from one another and by helping one another adds to the heat of the actual deeds themselves. Additionally the way they are written, so you feel the tremors as Bella does when she experiences them for the first time, you feel her wonder, her joy, her pleasure and her rapture... Plus Edward's pride and delight and constant stirrings - thanks to tip-top-tight writing you feel it all. Which is how I love my lemons.

I think one of the endearing and enduring images for me of this fic is Edward lying in bed, bargaining with himself, trying to go the distance, desperately trying to keep control so that he can just lie in bed next to Bella all night long. Just to last the night, next to her in bed, holding her. A simple thing many take for granted, but his condition has left him bereft of that source of comfort and warmth... & that my pervy little darlings, melted my heart into a puddle of love and pangs for FlawedWard....

4.5 little purpley viagara pills out of 5. It will be 5 once Ed can go the distance! ;)

The thing I like best about Failure to Thrive is that Edward and Bella are quirky and messed up and not at all perfect. They have their flaws and quirks and they embrace them. They've lived with them for so long that it is what makes them them. Because of them it makes them real in a way.

I always struggle when writing my reviews. How much of the story do I give away? How much info is too much info? Do I want to spoil the whole damn thing? That's the issue i'm having now. I want to give the whole damn thing away. But part of FtT's charm is discovering the back story and journey that Edward and Bella have been on and the path they take in revealing it to each other. It's a conundrum to say the very least. blarg.

I guess I can say that both Edward and Bella have sexual dysfunction's. Bella can't get aroused and Edward is too aroused all the time. Not something that is compatible. They decide, rather quickly, to help each other out with their not so little problems. They are both at the end of their proverbial ropes, willing to try anything and on the verge of giving up any hope of having a 'normal' sex or love life.

I'm gonna be completely honest and say I was scratching my head at how Edward's 'sexual obsession' and perma-arousal was a problem. I mean, a man that can go all night, every night? That doesn't seem like such a curse to me, more like a blessing. But as the story progresses, we see the toll it takes on Edward health and self esteem. That it really is a problem. I could go into further details about Edward's specific problem, but where would the fun in that be? Needless to say it turns out that Edward and Bella are more compatible sexually than we first thought, down right near perfect for each other actually.

This story is beyond cute. I love the interaction that Bella and Edward have with each other. It's natural and teasing and there is an "Awkward Chemisty" as Emmy coined between them. They are honest with each other, or I should say forthcoming with what their issues are. It's the only way that working together on their issues will work. That openness is a nice contrast to so many stories where the characters keep things hidden or are too afraid to reveal how they feel.

Edward does the occasional caveman routine and Bella calls him on it every time. It's not done in an assholish way, more in I'm worried about your safety kind of way. These two don't let the other get away with much and call bullshit when the other tries too.

Now the lemony goodness. Because of Bella's issue or sexual dysfunction they start out slow. Simple touches, kisses and caresses. As Bella knocks down the walls that have kept her "frigid" things progress at a fairly fast clip, but not in a completely unrealistic way. At the point that the story leaves off they haven't done the deed yet, but have set a goal to get there and are working towards it. I personally can't wait for them to get there. So far the lemony goodness has been beyond intense. It's not just smut and the characters going at it because they are attracted to each other. Each 'session' is done with care, meaning and purpose. That's not to say that it's clinical and perfunctory. It's not. There are real, deep feelings and a connection between these two that grow the more time they spend together.

4 out 5 viagras from me.

I found this story to be cute and light, even though the subject matter can be heavy at times – Bella has “failure to thrive” and Edward suffers from “insatiabilty”. Through a series of discussions, they agree to “help” each other.

We learn that Bella was assaulted by James, her step-brother, and I'm not going to even pretend I read chapter 5. Bella tells Edward what happened with James, and seriously, I just didn't want or need to read it, so per the author's note at the beginning, I skipped it.

I like the Edward/Carlisle relationship here, and even the fringe characters. The banter between Edward and Bella is sexy and fun, building up to some excellent naughty times. I loved Bella's realization that she's not frigid, and then her exploration with Edward. Bella's dreams made me giggle.

Chapter 7 hit me hard. Bella realizes a lot about herself, and Edward is there to help her every step of the way. I don't want to give anything away, I just really enjoyed it.

Chapter 8 includes Wankward, always a good time favorite around here. Julesnerd did not disappoint. Yum.

I liked the sweet tenderness that builds in this story. I love seeing them fall in love before they even realize it.

Chapter 14 is a major milestone for Bella, while chapter 15 is a milestone for Edward. They're both also filled with lemonade of the juiciest and sweetest variety. Chapter 16 and 17 are more lemony goodness, with a lot of really sweet plot and emotion thrown in, too. Not only do we spend time with Emmett, Rose, Jasper, and Alice in chapter 18, but there are some syrupy sweet (in the good way) exchanges between Edward and Bella.

The sex negotiations in chapter 19 totally cracked me up. These lines slay me:

“Honestly? I intend to make you use those vocal cords in a few minutes and I thought it would be only kind if I let you have some water first. Do you think your neighbors will mind? I could always send them flowers with an “I’m sorry we were loud” note.



Chapter 20, the latest update, brings us to a very interesting place with our fair lovers. They've passed some new milestones, said some important words, Edward gives Bella a gift, and they exchanged more deliciously delightful orgasms. With the promise of PIV sex on the horizon, I'm more excited than Edward.

Four enthusiastic Viagra.

Nicole our guest reviewer was the one that asked me if I had read this story yet, at the time there were only a few chapters. I started it and wasn't sure that I, being a wussperv, could handle the path that it seemed like it was going down.

I knew Bella had her 'failure to thrive' issue, and I wasn't sure exactly what Edward's problems were but upon assurance from Nicole. I kept trucking along and I'm so glad I did.

They're not perfect. I realize that a lot of people seem to have an easier time embracing a struggling and damaged Edward than they do a broken and imperfect Bella but add the two together and you've got quite the entertaining pair.

You'd think that Captain Insatiability would be a good thing right? Add his dysfunction to her inability to become aroused and follow through and it should be win win and easy. Yeah no. BUT, that's what great about this story. They 'help' each other with their disorders.

Carlisle (yum) is there nearly every step of the way helping his son in what I'd think would normally be an unbelievably hard (no pun intended) situation.Being his physician though and his father it takes out the awkward moments that normally would arise (sorry, I did it again).

As Emmy stated, the awkward moments come (snort) from Julesnerd's Bella and Edward. The "awkward chemistry" in my mind is adorable and sweet. Not tooth ache worthy at all, but genuine. They both want to truly help the other and believe that this is the way they can accomplish that.

I agree with Kathy, Bella's flashback chapter I skimmed, I know it was needed but I couldn't do it. Thankfully, Jules was great about letting us know that it was coming up and that we could skip it.

All in all, this story in my opinion is well rounded. It's great to see a not-so-perfectward and a I don't want to punch her in the face immediately Bella.

4.5/5 Viagra from me...

I wasn't at all sure what to expect from the summary. But the story sucked me in from the get-go with Bella's internal chatter and the bantering with Edward in the office. She made me laugh and yet I had to admire her for seeking help for her "problem", when there are so many that likely don't. Same with Edward.

There is a connection between them from the start and it's been fascinating to watch them grow together. That their problems are essentially contrasting and thus they may just be able to help each other out, makes it so much sweeter. And as time goes on their feelings grow and it's a beautiful thing.

My heart kind of breaks at times for Edward, for all that he's gone through. Caught in what I believe Bella called a catch-22. I love how each of them is so intent on helping the other work through their issues and learn how to work with or around them.

Each of their "sessions" has grown progressively more intense and leaves you hopeful, right along with them, for what's to come when the big action happens. I can only believe that it will be amazing.

4 out 5 Viagra from me, which is sure to change once they hit the big act!

I remember hearing about this story from a friend and knowing I had to read it. The idea of Edward and Bella both seeking some...sexual healing (oh god that was lame, right?) was intriguing. And once I read the first chapter with the Cat Fancy magazine and Georgia O'Keefe paintings surrounding the waiting room, I knew I would enjoy the humor in this story.

I don't want to give away just exactly why these two are in need of sexual therapy. It's something that slowly comes to light, which I feel is very important. You learn Bella's problems bit by bit. And so Edward must help Bella slowly and bit by bit. Same goes with Edward's problems. You think at first that his problem is much like any male's. But as they get to know each other, you realize just exactly why Edward needs to seek help in the form of his doctor father.

What I like most about these two is that they are both so...flawed. Maybe that's not the right word. What I mean is that they are nowhere near perfect. There are parts about them that make them odd, quirky, weird, etc, etc. And because they aren't perfect, it's perfect. Edward isn't some smooth ladies man. He's not a sex god. Bella is confused and scared. She's not fully aware of what her body wants or needs.

But together these two come up with an arrangement. And learn that when they are with each other there is hope for them to overcome parts of their past that limit them from being fully open to a relationship. The way they interact is sweet and sexy at the same time. Especially as Bella comes to realize that her lady bits do in fact work. It's all slow and believable and not just smut for smut sake.

Four little blue Pfizer pills (that's Viagra folks) for me. For me. Definitely :)

I'm a high school educator who tried the Twilight books because my students were talking about them. Like everyone else, I finished the whole series in about a week and was left bereft and frustrated by Stephenie's amazing characters combined with her lack of detail in certain scenes. I began trolling different websites and stumbled on fanfiction. I'd never heard of it, and was completely blown away at the vast number of stories out there and the realization that I was not alone in my obsession. After four months of ignoring my husband and friends, I began to have the inkling of a story nudging my subconscious. I would wake up after having "watched" a scene from my story play out in my head. I blew it off for about a week and finally, out of frustration, wrote the first chapter and posted it. I didn't really allow myself to think about it too much. The reviews had me both encouraged and hooked on the process. I write for fun and to see what else exists in the scenes that play out in my head when I'm falling asleep or about to wake up. I also write to challenge myself. It's difficult to come up with an original idea. When you find one, it seems almost criminal not to share it.


bouncy72 said...

LMAO this is definatly going in my stories-to-read-file. Looks brilliant. *grin*
I thought it was looking very promising but I think you completely sold me with the line
"I could always send them flowers with an “I’m sorry we were loud” note."
Thanks for the rec ladies :)

Emmy said...

Hope you enjoy it Bouncy!! As always let us & the author know... :) Emmy XX