The worst of it is this: if I am to be given lengthy descriptions of sex play, it had better be original and erotic or possibly comic... or even realistic - (God knows "real sex" is interesting enough to warrant an HBO series of the same name). I felt embarrassed listening to these hackneyed scenes, because I felt as if I was eavesdropping on the writer's own rather immature fantasies, instead of being immersed in a world of idiosynchratic and characters. Literally (and literarily) embarrassed, I felt as if I was learning something about the writer's inner life that I was not meant to see. A Jackie Collins meets Barbara Cartland, masquerading as a serious, albeit playful, first novel. Herein lies the problem. Had it been marketed appropriately, I would not have had false expectations. For all it's apparent "naughtiness", the book was strangely antiseptic... None of the dirt and grit of the period - or much to ground it in a different time. In this way it was like a regency romance written during the 50's. Quite a few loose ends left loose as well. I was disappointed enough to take the time to write this critical review, because I think that the writer's underlying idea has great promise. She had a fairly real inner dialogue going for the main male character, and I applaud the notion that people are people in whatever time they live. I like Anais Nin's erotic fiction - it is really unusual: base and erotic at the same time - and some of this is directly from her life (key point: her life, not only - or even in spite of- her fantasies). And I like "Fanny", by Erica Jong: the point being that this criticsim is nothing to do with being offended by sex. To sum it up clearly, the words :"sheath", "scabard" and "Adonis" were actually used, in all seriousness, in a sexual context! Need I say more? Oh, well one more thing: the narrator was great...(which is why I give it 3 stars).
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