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Apr 25 2017

A Review of Punishment Incorporated: The Full Trilogy by Jon Zelig

Punishment Incorporated: The Full Trilogy by Jon Zelig

Punishment Incorporated: The Full Trilogy by Jon Zelig

There’s a question which isn’t really considered much of the time when stories are written about succubi. It’s the question of what happens when time has passed, the moments are what they were. A question that isn’t so much about the why of things but rather the way things are.

A review then of the Punishment Incorporated series by Jon Zelig in which a succubus is trying, desperately, to not give into her base instincts, but instead transcend herself. That’s an interesting story and it’s present in much of the series, and along the way there’s a simple truth that not even a succubus can ignore.

The work tells the story of:

You have to know it’s there, the little “Punishment Suite” in the basement of a strip mall sex shop. And then . . . you have to know what you want: either for yourself or for a partner to be consigned into P-Inc’s “care.”

In Book One, “Punishing the Succubus?” narrated by the proprietor, Master Jon, Judy Holland’s husband thinks she needs discipline.

Judy agrees; and “down to the basement she goes.” But her husband doesn’t really understand who—or what—he married.

A centuries’ old Succubus, Judy agreed to this arrangement because she has been trying to fight her very nature—thinks, perhaps, if she can be submissive, she can change who, and what, she is, no longer prey on men.

It quickly becomes clear to Master Jon—in consultation with Mistress Tasha, one of his Dommes—that there is just no way Judy can submit.

Book Two, “Mistress Judy’s Journey,” tracks some of the past and present of the woman who has become Mistress Judy, narrated in her voice.

Book Three, “Tasha in Charge,” tells something of Tasha’s story, in her own voice.

The hunger of a succubus is eternal. The temptations are many, they come without end and there is seemingly nothing that can be done about them. Fate draws Judy into the hands of Master Jon, but she isn’t what seems and once he understands, the choices are few. Still, there is a choice, one that they both, with some help, can come to terms with. The hunger is eternal, but as well is the thrill of discovery.

The series isn’t focused on erotica, in fact there’s very little to be seen as a whole. It’s more about the main characters, Judy, Master Jon and Tasha. While each is interesting in their own rights, for me Judy, the succubus of the series, is far more so, mainly from her attitude and how she holds herself. That said, there is some heat in a few places, a bit of BDSM and dominance comes through very clearly at many points. The tone of the BDSM is somewhat more harsh that I like, it’s a firmer sort of level and it works in the story as a reflection of each of the characters themselves. It doesn’t read as being over the top or silly as some stories take the theme, but I didn’t find it as interesting as when Judy, or for that matter the other main characters, where acting outside of that realm.

Judy is a succubus, though there’s no appearance of wings or horns or any other similar things. But there’s a series of delicious moments when the predator aspect of herself comes out and in those moments, what that does to those around her is quite telling. The most memorable moment is at the end of the first work, when Judy appears, fully in her power. It’s a perfect description of a succubus in control and I liked that very much.

At its core, the series tells the story of Judy trying to understand herself, to find a way to not o the things she’s done in the past. While that takes some time to get to, there’s an aspect of desires needed and power gained. Judy’s power is strongly seen and at the same time she’s worn and lost as well. There’s a sadness within her which Judy is trying to find an outlet for. That search stumbles in the beginning, but when she sees the way out, that’s a telling and memorable moment.

If the first work serves as an introduction to Judy, her needs and who she is, the second work offers quite a lot about her succubus nature in a way that I found quite well done. The conversation that unfolds in that work tells far more about Judy, giving her a lot of depth, and built upon the first work very well. It’s not erotica, it’s more of a character development piece which brought Judy’s character into better focus.

The third work however turned in a dramatic way from Judy towards another character, Tasha. While she’s just as unique and interesting as Judy, I didn’t really find my way into that work as I had been expecting something of a closure of Judy’s story, but it didn’t happen. That said, Tasha’s story is a different tone, and it offers a really good insight as to how she came to be where she is.

Overall, I liked the series because it wasn’t about the erotica or the fetishes. It was telling the stories of three unique characters, one of which is a succubus and the others trying to come to terms with that reality. It’s thoughtful with flashes of brilliance in the storytelling, though I dearly wish the last work had built on the middle one and not gone off completely in a new tangent.

Four out of five pitchforks.

Overall I liked the series, though the last work turned the plot away from Judy towards another character and I felt like there was a gap in the storytelling. I think that comes to Judy being so present in the majority of the work, then fading out in the end. I’m not sure that worked well, there’s a feeling that too much of Judy’s story was left abandoned and I wish it hadn’t been.

While this appears to be the end of the series, I’d really like one more book to appear. Something that draws Judy’s story full circle and tells of what came beyond her choice, past her understanding and how that changed her. I’d hope it would, if only to push some of the loss within her aside for the sake of purpose. Every character needs a purpose, and I think Judy found that. I’d like to know for certain.

 

Tera

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