Friday, July 20, 2012


Sarah Singer made a list of 50 Books Even Sexier Than 50 Shades of Gray: And Counterpoint: An Interactive Family Saga made the list!

Up until middle school, the closest I had ever gotten toward reading about sex was Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. But while I loved Judy Blume’s coming of age story, without the aforementioned words “throbbing,” “pulsating,” and “quivering,” it left me a little dry.  

And so, when I found a (very) well-worn copy of Flowers in the Attic behind the bleachers at Marvista Park, the scene where Chris and Cathy are thrashing together on the mat in the attic made me “quiver.” I felt my loins start to “pulsate.” There was a “throbbing,” ache deep deep deep in my… you get the idea. It wasn’t just the sex. It was the twisted taboo that tethered the erotic moments to the narrative. (Sorry. Comp Lit Nerd Alert.) Anyway. Suffice it to say, by the end of 8th grade, my copy of Flowers in the Attic had been read so often the pages were kind of moldy.

In high school, I got off on Candide. By Voltaire. And no, not the torture scene (although after reading 50 Shades, maybe I should revisit that). But there’s this one part in the beginning where Pangloss is hooking up with the chamber maid, and… you know what? Just download it. Read it now, thank me later.

In college, James Patterson did it for me. Set against a backdrop of suspicion and intrigue, Detective Alex Cross would have a star-crossed roll in the hay. Until it turned out that his lover was the next victim. Or the killer.

So 50 Shades just pales in comparison.

I guess it’s because I like books where the erotic elements shock you–I like books that are greater than the sum of their sex scenes. I like when there’s a narrative arc that matters–whether it’s coming of age, or escaping captivity, or trying to catch a killer who ends up seducing you, I am sucked into the plot. And the sex scenes in these books come almost out of nowhere. They take you from behind. You’re wanting it–hell, you’re practically aching for it–but you don’t know when it’s coming for you.

It’s a great escape.

Read the entire thing at:

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