Mind Caviar

"No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting."

-- Lady Mary Wortley Montagu (1753)

Mind Caviar, Vol. 3 Anniversary Issue, 2002

Meet Our Anniversary Literate Slut:
Marilyn Jaye Lewis

So what makes a person worthy of being Mind Caviar's Literate Slut? Only a fabulous author who appreciates the finest work in her genre may have the honor.You know, someone who -- in a pinch-- would willingly stand on any busy intersection wearing a hand-scrawled sign that reads "Will Work For Books". We also look for those writers who know how to appreciate the best writings on food, sex, literature and art-- Mind Caviar's favorite topics of indulgence. Our latest anniversary Literate Slut tells you the best of the best and just what makes it so.

You can also find Marilyn's own fine literary work everywhere. Her short stories and novellas have been widely anthologized in the US and Europe. In fall 2001, Editions Blanche, Paris, published the French language edition of her critically acclaimed collection of novellas, Neptune & Surf.

Marilyn Jaye Lewis
She is co-editor of The Mammoth Book of Erotic Photography and recently won Erotic Writer of the Year in the UK for 2001. Her upcoming novel, The Curse of Our Profound Disorder, was a finalist in the William Faulkner Writing Competition in New Orleans, and a winner in the New Century Writer Awards. As webmistress, her erotic multi-media sites have won numerous awards. Her newest collection of short fiction, A Man in Her Arms, will be out in 2002. She lives and writes in New York City. Visit Marilynís homepage at: www.marilynjayelewis.com.

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The Burning Pen: Sex Writers on Sex Writing
Edited by M. Christian
Alyson Books
ISBN: 1-55583-615-1

Erotic fiction is on another upswing, Iím happy to report. And currently there are some very engaging books out there for fans of the erotic genre.

One unusual book that kicks erotic butt is The Burning Pen: Sex Writers on Sex Writing, edited by M. Christian. (Alyson Books, ISBN: 1-55583-615-1, $13.95)

This is not a how-to for aspiring writers, folks. This is one entertaining look into the minds of some of eroticaís top-selling authors in the LGBT arena. Essays explaining why they write what they write followed by some truly hot erotic stories to back up the reason for their substantial careers.

These are writers who have been excelling at their craft for more than a decade, in some cases even longer. Jack Fritscher, Felice Picano, Patrick Califia-Rice, Jesse Grant, RJ March, Simon Sheppard, Thomas S. Roche and the bookís editor M. Christian, round out the menís side. While Laura Antoniou, Leslea Newman, Cecilia Tan, Carol Queen, Lucy Taylor, and Shar Rednour, the womenís side.

I have read tons of erotic fiction in my career and the sheer eroticism of most of the stories included in this collection blew me away. In particular, Picanoís Going Too Far, Fritscherís Wild Blue Yonder, Sheppardís My Possession, and Cailifia-Riceís Chapter One from her upcoming novel The Code.

This is the kind of book that gets less attention than it deserves in the literary marketplace, but itís a wealth of insights into a very emotionally complex genre and provides some satisfying reading. I highly recommend it.

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Best Bisexual Erotica 2
Edited by Bill Brent and Carol Queen
Black Books/Circlet Press
ISBN: 1-892723-10-7

If you havenít already heard the news, Bill Brent and Carol Queen have struck gold again in California! Best Bisexual Erotica 2 (Black Books/Circlet Press, ISBN: 1-892723-10-7,
$16.00) is perhaps an even hotter collection than the original volume-a little darker, a little deeper, a little more experimental. One hot read from start to finish.

I especially liked Bill Brentís own foray into the mind of a lesbian masochist at play with her gay male Top in "Gaping". And George C. Simpsonís "Waiting to be Discovered"; a very well-described account of a straight manís first experience of fellatio with another man during a three-way with his girlfriendís roommate. Whew.

Rachel Kramer Busselís "Two Guys, A Girl, and a Porno Movie" is a story that realistically captures the keen desire for bisexual experiences that donít always come to fruition as one might prefer. TruDeviantís "Midstream" is a succinct and satisfying account of a gay manís unexpected anal encounter with a woman. And Karen T. Taylor writes a very winning story about the allure of transgender sex in "Wanting That Man".

This is a top-notch book that explores aspects of bisexuality you might never have considered; stories that are told with flare, enthusiasm and compassion. If youíre bisexual, hot for someone whoís bisexual, or wish you were bisexual, then this is a great book to go to bed with.

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A Comparative Review of Two Novels

Vertical Intercourse
By Paul Reed
Black Books
ISBN: 1-892723-06-9


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Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl: A Nancy Chan Novel
By Tracy Quan
Crown Publishers
ISBN: 0-609-60724-3

A Comparative Review of Two Novels

Diary of a Manhattan Call Girl by Tracy Quan (Crown Publishers, ISBN: 0-609-60724-3, $22.00) and Vertical Intercourse by Paul Reed (Black Books, ISBN: 1-892723-06-9, $16.00) are not what you would call erotic novels. They do, however, deal extensively with the erotic lives of their protagonists.

There are odd similarities in the structures of these two books, the primary one being that much of each novelís story lines include detailed conversations with therapists. Weird, huh? Yet, particularly in Vertical Intercourse, itís handled in a very engaging way. And I donít happen to be a big fan of therapy.

Die-hard fans of erotic fiction will probably be uncomfortable with the lack of erotic explicitness in Quanís novel, and with the sometimes depressingly mercenary approach to male heterosexuals. But over all, itís a well-written account of a New York City call girlís daily life, as she tries to balance her career with her engagement to a young man whoís oblivious to her secret life. There are a lot of good-natured moments in the book and the characters are exceptionally well crafted and believable.

Reedís Vertical Intercourse has much more erotic detailing, on the whole, but itís a very serious look at how gay men adjust to aging in modern-day San Francisco, and how they cope with the heavy burden of living side-by-side with AIDS on a daily basis. This is the first offering in Black Booksí San Francisco Authorís Series and Reedís third novel. I found it a wonderful, if often sad, novel that was hard to put down. 

The protagonist, a 40-year-old gay HIV+ male, is instantly likable. Itís simultaneously comforting and overwhelming to discover how he adjusts to loss, uncertainty, and disease in his own life and the lives of all of the men and women who are close to him. It presents a narrative of hope that seamlessly incorporates sexual desire and intimate fulfillment even in the constant presence of HIV and AIDS.

In Memoriam of Paul Reed

Mind Caviar regrets to inform our readers that Paul Reed died suddenly on January 28th, 2002. His memorial service was held for family and friends on February 17th, 2002. We regret that a fine author has left our world, yet he leaves us with his art to enjoy and to cherish. His last work will be released in July, 2002 available from Black
Books entitled Swollen, which is a collection of twelve essays on sex, which was sent only three days before his death to Bill Brent, proprietor of Black Books and a close friend of Paul Reed.

Mind Caviar extends our heartfelt condolences to the family, friends and fans of Paul Reed. Blessed be.

Copyright © 2002 Marilyn Jaye Lewis. All Rights Reserved. Do not copy or post in whole or in part. 

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