Like one of those songs about a guy who sees a girl and that’s all he can think about? That’s never happened before. I’m not like that. I’m sorry for going a little crazy.
There is a certain level of book that is recognized as a beach read. Identified as being predominately read by women, these run the gamut from busty women falling into the arms of lustful young lads to up and coming independent women trying to find their way in the fashion industry.
SilkWords was founded in 2013 to establish a place for women in video games. As they argue, most games are “action oriented, with lots of fighting, and often lack plot and character development.” In response, they founded a site targeted at women, featuring interactive fiction. Each story on SilkWords features multiple endings, and there are a variety of writers and story-types to be had.
With that in mind, there is a relatively limited selection and most of the stories would fall under what is commonly derided in popular literature, namely romance novels and beach reads. The novella Toxic Love that this review discusses in depth is a science-fiction infused romance piece with a decent dash of erotica thrown in. It toes the line between the old school Harlequin romance novels where people would discuss the male characters genitalia as delicately as possible and the “Mommy-Porn” of 50 Shades of Gray. Two of the other pieces did much the same. Categories for these stories feature “warnings,” such as BDSM and “Very Hot,” so if you had any illusions to the contrary it’s worth clarifying — a lot of this site appears to be erotica, or at least erotica friendly.
Toxic Love follows an interesting premise. The US has been struck by a bioweapon, a toxin that has wiped out a large percentage of the population and rendered swathes of land completely unliveable. Chloe is an Indian-American woman, an entertainer who through a series of unfortunate events finds herself immune to the toxin. Your friendly neighborhood medical company swoops in, prepared to offer her a sweetheart of a deal — allow herself to be bred (with her selection of attractive, hand selected mates) and live in the lap of luxury.
Toxic Love is relatively simple, with the glimmers of true love and racy sex scenes, but it is an ultimately satisfying beach read. One of the purposes of SilkWords is to create easily digestible chunks of romance for casual and busy readers. With a playing time of less than an hour of distracted beach-side reading, Toxic Love fits that to a tee. There are only a few choices, around four, til you complete the story and everything gets wrapped up neatly at the end. The game veers into the frivolous and fanciful, but it isn’t offensive. Some of the other stories I tested felt more like high-end fanfiction, but there was none of that in Toxic Love.
Overall, if you’re looking for something light and easy to read, then Toxic Love is the perfect beach-side read.
You can find Toxic Love and other SilkWords stories at the SilkWords website.
SilkWords supplied Storycade with a limited time subscription to their service, which was used to access the story for this article. In no way does this affect the position held by the author on the quality or entertainment value of the piece as a whole.