He held himself inside her until she went still.
He pulled out, and then turned to the last woman, who now patiently lay on her back, her legs spread wide.
“Nesvi olef,” she said, her voice low and husky.
Now you show me the ever-ready young space cadet who can turn down a low and husky, “Nesvi olef!” and I’ll show you a wuss. What’s more, there are no limp dicks in Lisa Lane’s flying corner of the cosmos!
Lust in Space owes very little to the 60s series, Lost in Space, but only by contrast. No one is lost on board Pandora’s Hope as it sets off on its space-bending exploration of other planets, horny humanoid species, and an infinite number of ways to fuck with and among ET’s. A far better parallel is Star Trek in that everyone does this fucking with a reckless abandon that boldly goes where none has fucked before. A couple of blood tests for terrestrial STDs and all pants are off. No one is bored on Pandora’s Hope!
That’s fine given that this book dances on the edge of an inter-galactic disco fantasy. As such it is enormously good fun. The book is divided into a trail of bizarre erotic episodes across the cosmos. These are both interesting and entertaining in themselves if you are not too fussy about the level of the science that comes with your stroke fiction. Nor is it totally outrageous to the point of being silly. Captain Nora – for, as we know, all captains must be statuesque females these days – is a bit neurotic with a depressive predilection for tequila. It makes sense if you think about it. How easy is it going to be to find executive staff who want to spend most of their adult lives fucking on a giant piece of flying hardware?
Needless to say, Nora has boy trouble, or thinks she does. That’s because sinister aliens start cloning into the form of her boyfriend even as sympathetic other (teeny, erotic) aliens ferret out the frauds. These little guys and gals have a lot of Disney Tinker Bell in them. Cute as buttons, they hum or buzz or vibrate when aroused which can be handy when wrapped around a full sized clit. Sounds silly? Well, it’s sexier than you think. They are impish little critters with a randy sense of humor and miniscule provocative attire. Unzip and clap your hands if you believe. Who wouldn’t?
I found myself reading this book very slowly because it was so much fun at bed time to come back to its lively and imaginative adventures that sometimes remind you of Rocky and Bullwinkle. It may help that my other reading is the modern history of the Middle East and a biography of J. P. Morgan. But still, you get to liking these characters a lot. They are sexy with a naïve sense of right and wrong just like bad boy, Captain Kirk. The secret is that Ms. Lane has been able to harness all the cliché’s of TV Scifi, and tease them out to an entertaining place between parody and homage. Lust in Space provides a lot of fun. It gives good lift off.
A little over a year ago, Ravenous Romance popped up on the eBook scene with some rather bold boasts about its future. That riled a number of romance bloggers who attacked before the first book was released, and turned even more vicious after. It was (and remains) ugly, and reflected poorly on the romance community. The only part of the attack that interested me was the charge that Ravenous Romance had no right (?) to claim they published romance, as the eBooks they published were all clearly erotica.
I’m not part of the romance community. I write erotica. The fine line between the two is a personal definition, although my rule is: If it’s written in the genre style of romance but has sex scenes, it’s erotic romance. If it’s written in the genre style of literary fiction, and it uses sex and sexuality to explore the characters, then it’s erotica.
Which brings me to my book this month: The Darkness and the Night 3: Twins of Darkness. It’s written in the genre style of romance, which seems to support Ravenous Romance’s claim that they publish erotic romance. But is this story erotic?
Sex scenes, even if they occur frequently, involving multiple partners, and gymnastic contortions, aren’t always erotic. Eroticism draws in the reader through the use of sensual imagery. It had the power to physically affect the reader. Well-written erotic passages might not include orgasm or penetration, and yet, the reader is left feeling that something deeply sexual occurred. The Darkness and the Night 3 has sex scenes, but nothing about them is erotic. Take most of them out of the story, and it wouldn’t affect anything. That’s not erotica.
By now, if you regularly read my reviews, you know that I hate to judge a book by what it isn’t. If it’s not erotica, what is it? It’s not particularly romantic in that it doesn’t focus on a core romantic relationship and how it grows. It’s sort of paranormal, sort of fantasy, but the world building isn’t there to support it. But what I found most disappointing was the level of storytelling. Nothing was shown. Everything was told. There was no depth to any scene, nothing to grab onto.
I had hoped that Ravenous Romance would put out a book that really wowed to balance out the critics. This is the third book in a series, so the first two were much better, or the readers like this style of writing. You might too. But the best rating I can give this is sideways.