Review: Ultimate Lesbian Erotica 2007 by Alison Foster (Editor)
Alison Foster (Editor)
Ultimate Lesbian Erotica 2007
Published by Alyson Publications
Reviewed by Kate Evans
Ladies-who-love-ladies in need of some titillation need look no further than this buxom volume of short erotic tales. Here you’ll find thin women, fat women, muscle women, big boobs, little boobs, cowgirls and ‘cowbois’, and chicks with dicks! Plus more muffs, pecs, abs and short fingernails than you can shake a silicone stick at. Hell, we’ll even throw in a lesbian ghost sex-orgy.
These stories are at their best when they deliver the shameless filth we were after. The opener, the delicately-named “Lick’er License”, is a shining example. Unashamedly brash, racy, raunchy, and above all, never taking itself too seriously. Likewise the delightful “Exercise Dyke”, where we know we’re in for a treat from the beginning: “I had just finished my third set of bicep curls…”.
The sex scenes themselves are the erotica equivalent of fast food. They are cheap, unrefined, filling; and rather tasty! There’s an array of sexual adventures here saucy enough to make your mother blush: whips, handcuffs, silicone being freed from slacks, fake mustaches bristling, and “dangling dildos duelling in the dark”. No, seriously.
Certain stories are let down by some unfortunate choice of vocabulary. For me personally, nothing inspires celibacy quite like the term ‘woman-cavern’. The same, I’m afraid, goes for ‘woman-lips’, ‘mound’, and ‘my throbbing rosebud’. But the ultimate no-no was perhaps the climactic unleashing of a dildo affectionately named…Dudley.
These small quibbles aside, I heartily recommend Ultimate Lesbian Erotica 07 for light reading of an evening. It is a welcome addition to my bedside drawer, where it will be joining the housemaid’s uniform and feather-duster.Kate Evans lives in London, where she is writing short stories and poems of a queer theme. She is currently working towards having some pieces published in queer journals. She also hopes to shortly take her Masters in Illustration; for which she will be creating a queer comic strip with a helicopter/ horse/ dragon-riding heroine. She is firmly rooted in reality. Kate can be contacted at: email@example.com
Review: Running Dry by M. Christian
Published by Alyson Books
Reviewed by Kathleen Bradean
Shelly manages an art gallery in Los Angeles, a job that's lost its appeal for her. A handsome stranger comes in and asks for contact information for an artist who had a showing in her gallery a year before, Doud. The stranger claims he wants Doud to work as an artist director for a horror film, but Shelly is leery of giving out Doud's private information, so she pretends she's lost it.
When Shelly takes the stranger's card to the reclusive Doud's apartment, Doud panics and forces her to flee with him to Bakersfield. On the way, Doud tells Shelly that he's a vampire, and that the man who was looking for him was another vampire, a dangerous ex-lover named Sergio whom Doud thought dead.
Shelly has a hard time accepting Doud’s story. But when they arrive at Doud's secret house in Bakersfield, a mindless new vampire has been left there as a warning to Doud, and to deliver a message. Doud fights the vampire, killing it. He wins, but the combat has drained his energy, bodily fluids, and almost all his reason. Shelly sees him for the monster he can be and finally believes his story. She flees.
After feeding, Doud appears human again; his victim is reduced to dust. Doud remembers the message the other vampire delivered - he must go to Needles, a small town in the middle of the Mojave Desert. When he gets there, he can't find any trace of Sergio. A friendly local artist cruises Doud and invites him home.
Shelly conquers her fear and decides that Doud needs her help. She returns to Doud's house. While she’s there, Sergio walks in. Sergio tells Shelly that he wanted to warn Doud about another vampire who was out to kill him, an artist from Needles.
As Doud and the artist kiss, Doud realizes that the artist is a vampire who intends to feed off him. Doud runs for his life, but the artist relentlessly pursues him. Shelly and Sergio come to his rescue. Sergio and Doud's reunion clears up old misunderstandings, and together they stop the malevolent vampire.
M. Christian delivers a fresh outlook on vampires, something this genre has long needed. Although he has published hundreds of short stories, this is M. Christian's debut novel. I'm sure we'll be seeing more of his longer works.Kathleen Bradean has published over 30 short stories and one novel under various pen names. Her stories can be found in The Best Women’s Erotica 2007, Inside Him, The Mammoth Book of Best New Erotica 6, Hot Cops, Caramel Flava II, and She’s On Top in print, and on Clean Sheets and The Erotica Readers and Writer’s Association websites. She’s a member of the Erotic Author’s Association, Broad Universe, The Speculative Fiction Society, Bi Writers, and the Erotica Readers and Writer’s Association. She also reviews books for Erotica Revealed and Velvet Mafia. KathleenBradean@blogspot.com.
Review: The Master of Seacliff by Max Pierce
The Master of Seacliff
Published by Southern Tier Editions
, Harrington Park Press
Reviewed by Kathleen Bradean
Andrew Wyndham, a budding artist just discovering his sexuality, agrees to take a position as a tutor to young boy in a remote, forbidding house on the New England coast. When he arrives at Seacliff, he meets the brooding, temperamental, openly gay master of the house, Duncan Stewart. Duncan’s son, Timothy, is the image of his father, in temperament as well as looks.
Andrew finds it easy to believe the rumors that Duncan murdered his father and his fathers’ business partner/lover. Duncan’s neighbors, brother and sister Leo and Elena Van Horne, delight in gossiping about tragic deaths and the mysterious departure of Duncan’s last lover, Steven Charles. Andrew is courted by Leo Van Horne, but is intrigued by Duncan. He believes that Duncan still loves Steven Charles though, a view strongly reinforced by Elena and Leo, and supported by the presence of Steven’s clothes, jewelry, and personal affects left behind in a bedroom that adjoins Duncan’s.
As Andrew pursues the mysteries of the past of Seacliff, the butler, housekeeper, stable hand, Leo, and Elena provide innuendo but not many facts. There are locked rooms, secret compartments, and enough intriguing clues to keep Andrew busy when he’s not tutoring his charge. While he seems no closer to finding the truth, several attempts are made on Andrew’s life. To protect him, Duncan takes Andrew to New York City and, with the help of Elena, finds a position for him with a renowned portrait painter. Andrew doesn’t want to leave Duncan though, and returns to Seacliff. This unexpected return, and declaration of love between the men, forces the hand of the murderer. Secrets are revealed, death is narrowly escaped, and in the end, Duncan and Andrew are happily together.
If you’re a fan of gothic romance, but always wished the lovers were male, then this is your story. Slightly tongue-in-cheek, it features recognizable elements from Dark Shadows, Rebecca, Wuthering Heights, and Northanger Abbey. A creepy butler, madness, hidden bodies, the graveyard, a mysterious cloaked figure in the fog, dark warnings, lover’s misunderstandings, and enough atmosphere to make Mars a habitable planet – this story has it all, making for an enjoyable, guilty pleasure read.Kathleen Bradean has published over 30 short stories and one novel under various pen names. Her stories can be found in The Best Women’s Erotica 2007, Inside Him, The Mammoth Book of Best New Erotica 6, Hot Cops, Caramel Flava II, and She’s On Top in print, and on Clean Sheets and The Erotica Readers and Writer’s Association websites. She’s a member of the Erotic Author’s Association, Broad Universe, The Speculative Fiction Society, Bi Writers, and the Erotica Readers and Writer’s Association. She also reviews books for Erotica Revealed and Velvet Mafia. KathleenBradean@blogspot.com.