By Roberta, Jean [ [ The Princess and the Outlaw: Tales from the Torrid Past - Greenlight ] ] Sep-2013[ Paperback ] Paperback – 1 Sep 2013
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
These are all well-done, but the high point for me is in “Becoming Alice,” when she challenges that master of literary subversion, Lewis Carroll, and describes the erotic initiation of the just-old-enough Alice with flights of wit and fancy and word-play that seem worthy of some secret journals of the shy math tutor himself.
After Alice’s excellent adventure, the tone of the stories changes as they move into more modern times, from the grim years after the economic crash of 1929 to a 1968 still grim for LGBT people, but with a spark of hope, when “The Man in Red” who rescues the joy of Christmas for a child and her mother is not the legendary figure you’d expect. These last three pieces have no hint of the fantasy worlds from the earlier ones, but a realism that makes them more intense for me, more involving, even though I’m a fan of speculative fiction and enjoyed the entire book.
I’m also a fan of erotica, especially of the woman-to-woman variety, so I should add that whatever the time or tone or twist of each story, the sex is right up front and, as the subtitle says, torrid.
Whether the stories center on Amazon warriors and their secret admirers, or medieval princesses; no matter if they are set in ancient Greece or witch-hunter Salem, MA . . . there's an edge to the writing that harkens back to another era. These stories seem like classics, fables, and fairy tales. I found myself drawn right into the familiar framework of the stories that made the erotic content all the more interesting and powerful.
Favorites? Hubris, the tale of an Amazon warrior and the girl whose fascination turns into a way of life that is so eloquently explained that I wondered how Jean managed to immerse herself in the ancient, fantasy world so deeply that her words read like they came from a real diary.
Sister Mary Agnes because I've always had a hot spot for erotica that toys with the church. In this one, we meet a nun and a convent full of women harboring secrets that prove to be the undoing for some, and the salvation for others.
Soul Search for its language and for taking on a disturbing era in American history and making it hot.
The World Turned Upside Down for its mystery and character development and surprise ending.
One of the things I admire most about what's presented here is how none of the stories are preachy, yet most share a good message about acceptance and freedom to be the sexual beings we are. The writing is clean and crisp and a pleasure to read.
I'm thrilled I was given a copy for review and happy to give this my highest rating.
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