Have a Naughty New Year We’re ringing in the New Year with a batch of erotica about new beginnings (though old acquaintances do pop up a fair few times). In Kate Allure’s Playing Doctor collection, Dr. Lauren Marks gets over the dissolution of her marriage with the help of young, gorgeous intern Court, while lonely widow Angela finds similar solace with her ranch hand–cum–boy toy in Cowboy Heaven. Former marine Evan Day has reinvented himself as porn star Trevor Hardball in Shea Connor’s Unfortunate Son but finds past trauma hard to shake when bubbly, beautiful Riley walks into his life. And for those who love variety, the 13th volume of The Mammoth Book of Best New Erotica will whet any sexual appetite. Here’s to turning up the heat in 2015!
Allure, Kate. Playing Doctor. Sourcebooks Casablanca. (Meeting Men, Bk. 1). Jan. 2015. 272p. ISBN 9781492602323. pap. $13; ebk. ISBN 9781492602330. EROTICA
Allure’s “Meeting Men” series and her writing career debut with a compilation of three “dirty doctor” stories. “The Intern” is a simmering tale of a lovelorn doctor and the sexy intern who shakes things up. Dr. Lauren Marks is finally recovering from the shocking collapse of her ten-year marriage. Back in her small hometown of Plum Banks, Lauren’s practice is finally getting off the ground, and she is adjusting to the single life (though she misses the comfort a man in her bed can bring). When intern Court turns out to be not a woman but a very attractive, very available young man, Lauren can’t help but give in to temptation. “My Doctor, My Husband, and Me” follows a similar trajectory, with middle-aged housewife Valerie finding the latest object of her affection donning a white lab coat. Dr. Luka Czerny is tall, dark, and unconventionally handsome, with an incredible bedside manner. Though happily married to husband Elliott for 19 years, Valerie finds herself fantasizing first about her surgeon, then about both men lavishing her with attention. Lucky for her, Luka and Elliott are extremely onboard with the idea, and the trio embark on a ménage à trois that changes all of them for the better. The compilation ends on a younger note with “Seize the Doctor,” a spicy tale of twentysomethings in New York City looking for fun. Twenty-six-year-old Nikki isn’t seeking anything serious; she just broke up with her boyfriend of a year after finding out about his infidelity. Her friends take her out for a pick-me-up at Club X, where she meets “Adonis,” also known as Hunter. Things end badly when the girls realize Hunter and his friends are making the rounds, scoring as many numbers as they can, but, still, Nikki feels like she missed a connection. To her shock and horror, she bumps into her club hottie again—at the OB/GYN, where he is meant to be conducting her exam. Even with their rocky start, Nikki decides this is one fish she won’t let get away, and the two find out that they’re extremely compatible, both in and out of the sheets. Verdict Though the language is a bit dated, these quick, easy reads will appeal to anyone looking for a sexy book that they can put down and pick back up with no trouble. Fun, flirty characters abound, and there’s plenty of kinky action.
Brooks, Cheryl. Cowboy Heaven. Sourcebooks Casablanca. (Cowboy Heaven, Bk. 1). Mar. 2015. 304p. ISBN 9781492607458. pap. $13.99; ebk. ISBN 9781492607465. EROTICA
Widow Angela McClive misses her husband, Cody, for many reasons, but the lack of male attention she receives at her father’s ranch, inhabited entirely by men, only exacerbates her yearning for companionship. When she finds a hot young cowboy stranded on the side of the road, Angela can hardly deny him a ride. Cowboy Troy is cute, funny, and, perhaps most surprising to Angela, attracted to her. So she does what any good Samaritan would: she hires him as a professional ranch hand and takes him on as her personal boy toy. But the fun and games take a turn when Angela’s longtime friend and fellow ranch hand Dusty reveals that his feelings are more than friendly and have been for a while. When it rains it pours, and with two more suitors than she’s had in years, Angela suddenly finds half the ranch vying for her affection. Verdict Though occasionally wordy and overly technical, this playful novel with a touch of danger is wild fun. Angela is a funny, likable protagonist, with a refreshing ownership of her healthy sexual appetite. The abundance of handsome, rugged characters is enough to tempt anyone with even the slightest cowboy fetish.
Connor, Shae. Unfortunate Son. Dreamspinner. (Sons, Bk. 1). Jan. 2015. 179p. ISBN 9781632165305. pap. $14.99; ebk. ISBN 9781632165312. EROTICA
This sizzling M/M novel jumps right in with a raunchy sex scene, one the reader soon discovers is actually part of a porn film. Evan Day, or Trevor Hardball, as he’s known in the industry, is pretty happy with his job: he is paid well, treated well (most of the time), and even gets to travel—all for having sex with hot guys on camera. But sometimes Evan misses the intimacy of sex with someone who isn’t an actor, and, often, Evan misses his former lover Lucas, who died when both were marines stationed in Afghanistan. When lively Riley Yeats tumbles, quite literally, into his lap at a bar, Evan finds himself opening up to him though he’s never been an open book. It doesn’t take long for him to start falling for the sweet, flirtatious man, but Riley appears to have secrets of his own, responding to Evan’s affection alternatively with warmth and indifference. Both men have their reasons for shying away from commitment, but will this be the time they finally stop running? Connor’s writing is engaging, sexy, and sensitive, nimbly depicting scorching sex scenes followed by harrowing accounts of violence overseas. Colorful, likable characters fill in the rest of the Atlanta gay porn scene, including punky veteran porn star Jimmy and his boisterous lover Corey, also known as the drag queen Coco Lamé. Verdict An excellent pick for readers seeking a sexy drama, with a generous sprinkling of humor and a happy ending.
Kincade, Sierra. The Masseuse. Berkley. (Body Work Trilogy, Bk. 1). Jan. 2015. 352p. ISBN 9780425277997. pap. $15; ebk. ISBN 9780698182813. Erotica
Masseuse Anna Rossi is just about to meet her newest client, the wealthy, enigmatic Maxim Stein, when she runs into a mysterious man sexy enough to make her come undone with a smirk. It turns out the handsome, brunette stranger with piercing blue eyes and a quick wit is head of security for none other than Mr. Stein. Alec Flynn is gorgeous, confident, commanding, and just the type of man Anna distinctly worries she won’t be able to run away from, for once. As the two give in to the undeniable heat between them, Anna knows she’s flirting with danger, but she has no idea how much. Though classified as erotica, this novel is chock-full of action and drama as well. Anna has just as many skeletons in her closet as the inscrutable Alec, including deep abandonment issues and a constant fear of settling down. Strong, captivating writing makes for sexy banter between the couple that ignites the text and their bedroom scenes. Verdict Kincade skillfully imbues her novel with elements of tension, sexual and otherwise. A taut, erotic thriller.
The Mammoth Book of Best New Erotica. Vol. 13. Running Pr. Jan. 2015. 596p. ed. by Maxim Jakubowski. ISBN 9780762454716. pap. $14.95. EROTICA
This collection lives up to its name, with 45 erotic stories packed into one volume to keep even the most avid erotica fans occupied. Mammoth opens with Raziel Moore’s “Invisible Lines,” the sensual tale of Sima, a young woman who gets off on the sting of tattoo guns. She finds a kindred spirit in Paul, the quiet, dedicated tattoo artist who happens to have a kink for giving just the type of pain Sima loves to receive. There’s a heady intensity to many of the contributions, especially “Moving” by M. Christian, in which a nameless protagonist undergoes self-bondage for his partner and has a shattering emotional epiphany in the process. It is a powerful standout, as it manages to convey electric eroticism without the characters touching one another at all. Other entries are more lighthearted but no less entertaining, including Lucy Felthouse’s romp, “A Problem with Authority,” in which Pvt. Jesse Bagnall finds out why Cpl. Roxanne Grey seems to treat him the worst and gives her some sexy payback for her severity. “Becoming Alice” is Jean Roberta’s archly funny twist on Lewis Carroll’s classic and emulates the eccentric disjointed style of the original. But this time, Alice follows the White Rabbit into a very different type of wonderland, one in which she becomes a woman and learns more than a few facts of life. Though occasionally succumbing to style over content (some of the stories strive for sophistication, to the detriment of story flow), this collection of truly well-written stories reflects delightfully diverse talents and interpretations of the term erotica. Verdict Recommended for those seeking something a bit more highbrow than mainstream erotica fare.