Kristina Lloyd's Asking For Trouble is the Lovehoney Erotic Book Club's first book of the month.
When Beth Bradshaw - the manager of a fashionable bar in the seaside town of Brighton - starts flirting with the handsome Ilya, she becomes a player in a game based purely on sexual brinkmanship. The boundaries between fantasy and reality start to blur as their relationship takes on an increasingly reckless element.
When Ilya's murky past catches up with him, he's determined to involve Beth. Unwilling to extricate herself from their addictive games, she finds herself being drawn deeper into the seedy underbelly of Brighton where things, including Ilya, are far more dangerous than she bargained for.
You can share your thoughts on Asking for Trouble in the Erotic Book Club Discussion Forum.
You can buy the featured Erotic Book Club Book of the Month, Asking For Trouble, for just 99p during November! (RRP £7.99)
Here are some things to ponder while you're reading the story:
We think we should all read more dirty books and we're not ashamed to say it! So we're starting an Erotic Book Club to encourage everyone to have a naughty book at bedtime or bathtime or whenever takes your fancy.
Think of it not so much as Richard and Judy but Richard and Rude-y!
Every month we'll feature a different erotic book from erotic publishers like Black Lace, Nexus or Cleis Press.
We'll interview the author, post an extract from the book to the Erotic Book Club blog and also provide reading notes to inspire discussion in the Erotic Book Club discussion forum. Hurrah!
Best of all, you'll be able to buy the featured Erotic Book Club monthly book at Lovehoney for half price. The first book is Kristina Lloyd's Asking For Trouble (RRP £7.99) which you can buy for just 99p during November!
Over the past two weeks, I have talked about Nancy Friday's work, Men in Love, in which she showcased men's fantasies and Forbidden Flowers, which displayed women's fantasies. So I thought it was only right that I finish the series by talking about the book that started it all. My Secret Garden is the first of this trifecta and the one that really unveiled how much people were needing to be reassured that their fantasies were normal and healthy.
Last week I spotlighted Nancy Friday's "Forbidden Flowers", her second book showcasing real life fantasies that women sent in to her after her first book was published. But as much as I love that volume, my real favorite of her books is her focus on the men--Men in Love.
Here at Lovehoney, we all tend to focus on the toys--and fair enough with that, because what is better than a bit of playtime? But hidden behind all the racks of dildos, vibrators, and strange contraptions that require manuals and extra lube are hidden treasure troves of erotica. And as much as I enjoy a good erotic novel or series of short stories, I can't think of anything hotter than real men's fantasies...unedited and just as dirty as can be. Considering that this one has four Orgasm Army soldiers singing its praises, I think that that marks it as a worthwhile read.
Ever since I read Nancy Friday's Forbidden Flowers, I haven't been able to stop trying to get more people to read it. I wrote a review of it over at Orgasm Army where I said:
"This is a book to read while on a leisurely train ride or when you're relaxing in a tub - it is more a contemplative examination of women's sexuality than an erotic panting page turner. Which is not to say this book isn't erotic - it is... this book is a glimpse into hundreds of women's most intimate thoughts, it would be impossible for it not to be. But the style of the book is thoughtful and more academic than the average erotic novel."
And I'm not the only one to think so. Another reviewer found it enlightening, "What this book tells you, and what every letter says, is a thank you for making me feel normal that I have fantasies like this. It's got a great range of fantasies, which are helpfully grouped so you can read the ones you like and avoid the ones you don't. Nancy Friday's analysis is really interesting as well.
These are real unsanitised fantasies and some people may not like them all, but they are really interesting to read and very eye-opening. You learn a lot about yourself as well as getting turned on. You can read this alone or out loud to a partner.
A third woman just found it darned hot: "I guarantee this book will get the juices flowing and is a great book to share with your partner. Also a great book if you're on your own too. This book opens up the world of women's sexual fantasies and is a great help to women who are maybe a little shy. This book has come to bed with me many times with fantastic results both with myself and my partner."
Most people will agree that the best thing you can do to achieve great sex is to learn to relax and enjoy it. I don't know of any other way to really relax into your sexuality than by learning to accept it. This book goes a long way towards helping women understand their sexuality and to love all the parts of themselves that they thought were shameful.
Even if you think you're completely comfortable with your fantasy life, you're likely to find that this book is good to own... after all, where else are you going to find such a treasure trove of ready-made fantasies?
'Let's pretend we're authority figures, bourgeois neurotics, juvenile delinquent and welfare officer, arresting officer with clipboard and handcuffs, personality sex offender and victim turned accomplice. We are aroused by language over touch. This isn't a skin-on-skin affair and I don't think we've even seen each other naked. This is not about bodies.' All of which makes Leonie Martel's The Private Undoing of a Public Servant a very different erotic novel indeed, marrying the usual fem-dom paraphernalia of butt plugs, bondage, lashing and cross-dressing to the tale of a cabinet minister's downfall at the hands of an uncompromising pervert.
Sasha White, who's been taking the erotic world by storm with books like Lush and Bound, stories in the likes of Wicked Words Sex in the Office and her ultrastylish blog at www.sashawhite.net, has very kindly agreed to say a few words to Lovehoney about her experiences of writing erotic fiction. Many thanks, Sasha, and over to you...
Portia Da Costa is one of the most popular Black Lace authors, with her latest novel Suite Seventeen adding a wide range of sex toys - everything from vibrators, nipple clamps and restraints to a slave collar - to her trademark sizzling sex play. It's the perfect read for Lovehoney fans, and the ideal introduction to Portia's impressive back catalogue, which also includes the bona fide classics Continuum and Gothic Blue. If you ever wondered what all the Black Lace fuss was about, Portia's books are a great place to start - and we're honoured to have her views on the craft that has made her famous.
This week's selection of the great, good and not-so-good in the world of free online dirty words includes the following:
- www.girl-directory.com's erotic stories page is a little cluttered and lacks the exhaustive categorisation of other sites, but comes with reader ratings, giving you exclusive insights into the sexual tastes of - well, girls directory visitors. The parent site is just what it says, a directory of girls - working girls, that is, so you can see who's available for home visits in your area. Although with callout fees of around £150 an hour, you might be better off with a Doc Johnson Jenna Jameson UR3 Vagina and Ass!
- www.eroticwriting.com is, despite its enviable URL, a hobbyist site that could do with a design makeover. 'Originally a showcase for my stories, I now publish stories by amateur authors. Stories here are selected on their ability to turn me and other people on.' Why not take a look and see if you're one of these 'other people'?
- www.pulperotica.com won't be to all tastes, dedicated as it is to the spirit of 30s and 40s pulp fiction, but it's a beautifully designed site that isn't afraid to tell it like it is: 'Half-naked damsels in distress, hard-boozing gumshoes, lust-razed monsters, sick-minded villains, kinky sex secrets - pulp art and fiction were the places to find what you really wanted in the 30s and 40s.' And perhaps even today...
Please let us know if we haven't selected your favourite site yet! There's only so much trawling we can do before our eyes begin to melt...
Back into the breach, dear friends. I've wiped the steam off my glasses and had another dip into the world wide web to look at who's giving what out for free in the wild world of erotic fiction. And these are today's findings...
- www.adultstorycorner.com looks like it was designed by a hobbit freak - sorry, a fantasy fan - covered as it is with pictures of 'enchanted faeries' and the like. It has submission guidelines, unusually for sites of this type, so no frolics with Fido here, and is also at pains (despite the kitsch decoration) to point out that it '110% endorses the USA and its allies', with a 'special corner dedicated to veterans of the USA military and its allies'. A curious mixture, to be sure.
- www.heatherssecretplace.com is a neatly designed site with near-exhaustive categories, plus an array of blog links that makes this the perfect place to dip a toe in the erotic story blogosphere.
- storiesonline.net is exactly what it says, a free and large archive of all kinds of stories, not just dirty ones. You'll need to register, but it's free and easy.
As ever, please leave comments if there are any free story sites you'd like to recommend!