"I easily sink into mere absorption
of what other minds have done,
and should like a whole life for that alone."
~ George Eliot (1872)
Mind Caviar, Vol. 2 Fall-Winter Issue, 2001
Reviews of Today's Hottest Books
by Our Mind Caviar Experts
This issue's Literate Slut has such a diverse array of books, it's no wonder we have put three minds together to bring you the following thoughts on erotic literature. After all, "erotic" is such a subjective term. From the achingly sad and woman-centric little pillow book, Unveiling Venus by Jamie Joy Gatto, to the hot faux-memoir bisexual page turner, My Life as a Girl by Leslie, we finally arrive at SZMONHFU the sci-fi psycho-sexual novel by Hertzan Chimera. Mind Caviar also announces the latest from our staff artist Mia Jennings, who has produced OrgasMia, a first edition coffee table book of erotic work and fully illustrated.
As promised, we present you
only the most interesting erotically-tinged literature.
Reviewed by Aldonza
I hold a soft, scarlet-covered selection of poetry that invites me into the feline eyes of the woman on the cover-- if I have the nerve. Unveiling Venus is both the title and the dare presented in this intimately small collection by Jamie Joy Gatto, which contains nineteen poems, songs and very short prose. It is harrowing and joyful, and oh so feminine-familiar. I remember so much now-- things I SHOULD remember-- about the journey of girl to woman to creator/survivor. Little girl escaping to nature's protective cover; tears wiped with grass-stained fingers. Oh, Jamie Joy, I remember. You reminded me of my ugly unworthiness exposed to a boy who probably forgot me five minutes after goodbye– my fault of course. And oh, the all-consuming relentless lust for someone who's flesh seems to pulse and tease me invisibly every moment I'm awake, everywhere I am, every time I dream. I remember the constant, moist fog of that now. Then, the intellectual reasoning I went through trying to turn that lust into something more solid, protective-- reliable?
Loss! Lost energy, hopes, pride; try again; use what was learned. Jamie Joy will remind you, too with this confessional journey.
"My want greater than my love, always so much greater than my man."Raw, universal truth-- nothing more needs to be known.
Comments by Other Authors:
Sage Vivant, Author and Founder of Custom Erotica Source writes:
Though deeply personal, Unveiling Venus is not merely a glimpse into one woman's internal tortures. It is a finely sharpened, professional tool that unexpectedly exposes the reader's own vulnerabilities. Jamie Joy's observations about pain, love, sex, and abandonment make us face what all our artifice struggles so valiantly against. I defy anyone to read this honest little book without feeling that shortness of breath that comes when a skillful writer suddenly begins writing about the reader.M. Christian, Author and Editor writes:
Sure Jamie Joy Gatto is brilliant, her writing sparkles, crackles and sizzles like no other; absolutely her characters are alive, living long in the mind after the book's been closed; her poetry sings like the finest nightingale -- but what's even more remarkable is that she seems to do all these wonders so effortlessly. When I pick up something from Jamie Joy, I know long before I start to read that I'm in for a special treat. Do yourself a favor and buy this book and anything else that features some of her great writing -- I can guarantee that when you finish you won't be the same, you'll be better.
Reviewed by Goddess
My Life As a Girl, Book One is an engaging, well-written erotic journey of the life of a girl told through the charming voice of the protagonist-- a fictional character named Leslie. And what a life it is! While we are assured that the characters are all fictional, and that the author’s name-- also Leslie-- is a mere coincidence, it still makes you wonder if this story is a confessional tale, or a fictional fabrication, or maybe a bit of both. Leslie's down-to-earth writing style makes you feel as if you are sneaking a peek into someone's private journal, so it is hard not to wonder.
Early in the book we find Leslie approaching her fifteenth birthday in the 1950s. She has her first sexual experience, an awkward encounter in a car that ends abruptly due to Mom-interruptus. Because her parents feel her "morals aren't keeping pace with her opportunities," Leslie suddenly finds herself boarding and attending a Catholic convent school. There she befriends teenaged Rita, every parent's worst nightmare. With hormones in overdrive, Rita quickly begins teaching Leslie everything there is to know about sex. Leslie and Rita then set out to try to convince their parents to allow them to leave the convent school in a series of situations that will make you both laugh and cringe.
In one of the steamiest encounters, Leslie has a torrid tryst with an older woman, whose identity I won't reveal, but trust me, the scene will have you reaching between your legs for more. Leslie experiences both men and women along her journey and enjoys them both equally. Where, oh, where were girls like this when I attended Catholic school?
This book has all the elements of a page-turner: intrigue, blackmail, a plot that won't quit, unusual sexual situations and relationships, and sex scenes that will leave you panting, hoping you can grab your lover and get it on as soon as you are able to close the book. The book is entertaining, and is absolutely bulging with scalding, descriptive, believable sex scenes. My Life As a Girl, Book One is the first book of a five book series, and it leaves you longing to read My Life as a Girl, Book Two, now currently available at iUniverse.
Review Copyright ©
2001 Goddess. All rights reserved.
Reviewed from chapter excerpts by A. Lark
According to the author, the story involves transmutative sex and extradimensional threat and Jane's quest to find the Holy Grail of identity in a universe devoid of morals. The best I can figure is that Jane, the predominant character, is a machine-enhanced woman who has the ability to transform herself, albeit not entirely under her own volition. Other characters include Paul Kansai, one of Jane's lovers, and his ex-girlfriend, Susan Brown. Keiran Fipps is another metamorph who aids in the escape of Jane from a facility in which she is held, watched over by Anne Dobson, the warden. Dave Price is a truck driver.
Still with me? Good. Here's the point where I would tell what these people wanted, how they became who they are, from where the terror comes, and why they clash in warped animal-twisted lust and carnage. Sorry, but I can't, because I have no idea. Your guess is probably better than mine.
The writing is phenomenal. It's some of the densest vocabulary and image-rich language I've read in a long while. I usually only find this sort of writing in poetry, which usually tries to make a larger picture from a sparse economy of words. Complete sentences are optional here, but there's enough subjects and predicates to piece together what goes where. Descriptions of sex, rage, fear, and violence are intricate and involved, and those four always seem to show up simultaneously.
I like the uncertain world Chimera structures where reality is a myth, but it makes for some difficult reading. I continually asked if this or that really happened, but there weren't many answers. Eventually with stories written in this sort of style, I start ignoring anything that looks like a fantasy or dream to try to get back to the real narrative. Also, the technique belittles every other scene because it's not certain if the reader should hold any credence in what the narrator tells. The reader is along for the ride, but it's a bit irritating not to be able to trust the storyteller.
Yet with this novel, if reality is so gelatinous, the reader may not be able to brush aside entire segments just to get on with the story. The difficulty here is that the scenes, dreams, and fantasies may have really happened, just not affecting the characters in an obvious way. I may be trapped in a tradition of storytelling that encompasses a singular reality in which events happen and characters react, with occasional nonsense coming in between. This novel makes me doubt that perspective will work.
My background in science fiction is a mix of movies, literature, and sludge. I worship the greats from the days of Analog and Fantasy and Science Fiction, and Bradbury, Asimov, Sturgeon, Heinlein, Ellison. I crave offbeat stuff like Solaris, the Russian counterpart to the film 2001: A Space Odyssey. I dig camp like Quark and Flash Gordon serials. SZMONHFU borrows from some, but doesn't really fit anywhere in what I know. This is a good thing. I look forward to tackling the rest of it, and expanding the breadth of how I can perceive the events of a story, and the world in which it happens.
Review Copyright ©
2001 A. Lark. All rights reserved.
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