Aphrodisia, $12.95, ISBN 978-0-7582-2039-4
Historical Fantasy Erotica, 2007
Oh my goodness, I am like a kid in a candy store as I read Elizabeth Amber’s debut erotic romance Nicholas. Actually, a more apt comparison would to be to a junkie that has found her way into a warehouse full of heroin. I know this book, with its purple prose and ridiculous sex scenes and flimsy plot, is really bad for me, but I crave and enjoy every word.
Lord Nicholas Satyr, a nineteenth-century nobleman residing in Tuscany, is actually one of the Lords of Satyr. He and his fellow half-satyr brothers protect the magical doors that connect ElseWorld, the land of multi-genital spooks, and EarthWorld which is, of course, our world. Once a month, Nicholas and his brothers will get naked before the statue of Bacchus (not Pan?). Hey, don’t go there, folks, it’s not like that. Instead, these men will change into their satyr form, the chief change being a second penis that sticks out in the proper position for double penetration. Apparently these guys have to use their second penis once before it will, er, retreat to whichever part of the body that it resides when it’s not the time of the month. These brothers will summon walking blow-up dolls called Shimmerskins to have sex with non-stop until dawn during that Calling night.
You know, I think I like these parties better when there were crazy women ripping apart bulls and men with their bare hands and dancing on the resulting gore back in those days. A couple of fratboys getting off on blow-up dolls seem rather tame and even mundane by comparison.
Nicholas’s story begins when he learns that King Feydon of the ElseWorld has three daughters in EarthWorld and the three daughters are now in need of protection from bad folks that will do them harm. Naturally, the Double-Wang Gang are called to find these women and “protect” them from bad guys. The Double-Wang Gang are convinced that the King just wants them to get married and create kids that will continue to hold Bacchanalian orgies in the vineyards of the Satyr holdings. Nonetheless, Nick and his brothers cannot just stand by should these “FaerieBlend” women come to harm, so they can only thrust themselves right into the heated sheath of danger and spew forth their righteousness on those who dare to cross their women. This book deals with Nicholas doing his thrusting while subsequent books will feature each brother in the act.
Unlike his brothers, Nick is more willing to marry the FaerieBlend woman he is searching for in Rome. The woman is one Jane, a woman who makes her living as a fortune teller. But ah, the blissful happy ending will have to wait until these two have dealt with all kinds of skanky fun like incestuous bisexual psychotic aunties, crazy rapist women with strap-on devices of doom, and Nicholas’ own Madonna/Whore issues that make him believe that he is a Harlequin Presents version of an early Elizabeth Lowell hero with twice the number of wangs as well as asshole factor. No, don’t ask me if he has two assholes. I don’t think so, but then again, this story is disappointingly lacking in skanky male-male antics. Throughout the mess, you can be assured that Nicholas will always stand firm and sturdy, ready to service all comers at such a rate that it is as if sex is fast going out of fashion.
You know what Nicholas reminds me of? The kind of “shocking books” that young kids keep in their drawers away from their parents until they can read it in the privacy of their bedrooms. Oh come on, you know what I am talking about. You have your Bertrice Small books. Your fourteen-year old daughter will have her Elizabeth Amber masterpieces that she will read with eyes and mouth wide open as she gets a thrill out of the act of reading such sexually explicit material without your knowledge. This book is so over-the-top with ridiculous sex scenes, some of them actually impossible to perform unless your partner has two penises and some magic woo-woo to increase the flexibility of one’s body, that it is hard to take this book seriously. This is good old smut, that’s for sure, and of course, you know me. I use the word “smut” with lots of love in this context because I have a most enjoyable time reveling in the filthy goodness of this book.
The fact that the book can be pretty awful from a technical standpoint only adds to its brown paper cover appeal. The author loves to switch points of view in the middle of a scene, sometimes to a confusing extent because it seems as if a character is privy to things that he or she should not be aware of until I realize that the author has merely and clumsily hopped from the head of that character to that of another character. The characters speak as if they have taken elocution lessons from the hero and heroine of a Connie Mason book. They are also standard erotic tropes. Jane is the unschooled virgin who ends up having lots of sex, some of them without her consent. When she is not having sex for the greater good, sex happens to her instead of the other way around. She’s just some blow-up doll from the Martyr Barbie line that is constantly bandy-shagged for the reader’s titillation. Likewise, Nick is the oversexed stud stereotype. I suspect that both characters have barely enough brain cells between them to solve a basic addition problem but it’s not their brainpower that matters in this story.
The author is also blissfully unaware of her own double-standards as she merrily portrays lusty sexual females as evil, homicidal, and psychotic whores even as she celebrates her male characters’ ridiculously indiscriminate sexual excesses with glee. It doesn’t make sense, especially when both men and women worship Bacchus. Why the worship of the same god can be so different between the two sexes, I will never know. The author also talks about how shocking it is that the evil rapist meneads wear nipple rings. Er, Ms Amber? Your guys have two penises. I think that’s a little more shocking, really. But with the book being this crappy, I am not expecting anything better.
I mean, seriously now. Who is reading for the sparkling dialogues and excellent prose? I’m not and admit it, you won’t be too. We are all standing here clamoring for double-wang filth. Of course, if you want to read something that is more… er, intellectual, let’s just say, this is not the book that you should be even touching out of curiosity at the bookstore. This book is for folks who want to read dirty, filthy, nasty, skanky, and hilariously over-the-top sex stuff.
I cannot say enough how much of a good time I have reading this book. I can’t believe it myself, but then again, I embrace my inner pervert with relish and I adore how unabashedly smutty this book is. It’s so much fun in a ridiculous manner that a part of me delights in shutting off my brain and just going along for the ride. My only disappointment is that the story doesn’t end with the two characters having one last shag right before a chandelier crashes on them and kills them both. Call me an elitist Darwinist, but dumb characters like Nick and Jane don’t deserve to live past the last page.
I also object to the use of the word “childseed”. The word evokes a disturbing meaning that I’m pretty sure Ms Amber does not have in mind when she comes up with that word. Leave the silly amalgamations to Robin D Owens, Ms Amber. Wait… Ms Amber isn’t a pseudonym for Robin D Owens, is it?
If you are curious about this book, maybe you should try checking under your thirteen-year old daughter’s bed or in her drawer just in case she has a copy that you can borrow. This book is not for just anybody. After all, the hero has two penises! If you know you can enjoy surreal over-the-top smutty stories that are not exactly well-written in the first place, I feel that Elizabeth Amber has managed to write a story that is bad enough to be unexpectedly good so for all we know, you could enjoy this one as much as I do. Hey, it’s okay. I won’t tell if you won’t, and I certainly won’t tell your friends and parents as long as you promise to do the same.