In "The Contract", we meet Becky, a woman who has multiple cancers and has been given six to twelve months to live. She is in the process of hiring Samantha, an escort, to take her place after Becky dies. Finally, we meet John, Becky's husband, a man that doesn't plan to live long after his beloved wife passes away.
Becky hires Samantha to make John fall in love with her, and marry her. Samantha is required to stay with John for at least a year, and she gets a million dollar payoff. However, things don't always work as planned, and they become something more than business partners.
The sex in this story is OK. I never found it to work up to being all that hot, but that is because much of the scenarios with the plot were hard to believe. We are reading about a woman that is dying, and most of the sex scenes tend to end with John lamenting the soon to be departing Becky as soon as they finish having sex. That had too much of a "wet blanket" effect on me. The initial threesome was hot, but it didn't really gain anything by being told again from another person's perspective.
The plot itself is a little choppy. In the first chapter, they discuss how to address the age difference between Becky and Samantha, and in the second chapter, Becky compliments Samantha privately for coming up with a great way to explain their age difference when it was suddenly brought up. That was a major slip. This really felt like the author just winged it without preparation.
The characterizations were also a little hard to get a grip on. Different chapters were told by different people, and we find out there were events that the other two never told us about. That made for a strangely evolving tale.
Technically, the story could have been smoother. Several proper nouns and acronyms weren't capitalized. AIDS, for example, showed up as all lower case, and I almost missed the word. Also, there were a few places where the author had two persons speak in the same paragraph, which makes for difficult reading.
Overall, this is a hard story to really like. Becky came across as a great woman, but we are sadly meeting her at the end of her days. She finds herself loving Samantha as a friend, but their sexual relationship is derailed by her illness. Samantha starts off a little cold, but becomes very caring. John is just a lost man that never really seems to come to grips with anything until the very end.
I never really enjoyed this one. Not because it was a sad story, but because it was too poorly put together. A tighter plot, and better writing quality, would have helped immensely. I really think that the plot potential was not realized on this one.