Sunday, April 12, 2015

Review of "Generation Game: Five Linked Erotic Short Stories" by Secret Narrative

Generation Game is a book that many of us have been waiting for all our lives, a happy surprise, even if it arrives possibly just a little too late. As a young blade, perpetually obsessed with “older women”, fifteen or twenty years my senior—sometimes even more mature—I might well have killed—or, at least, done something jaw-droppingly rash—for a sexual mentor like the one in these lithe, literate, compellingly steamy stories. More’s the pity that, now in my late-fifties, this sixtysomething goddess probably would have nothing to do with the likes of me anymore. Ah! If youth knew! If age could!  

In any case, it’s long past time somebody offered so frank and artfully-written a declaration of mature desire in this terminally youth-obsessed culture of ours. Secret Narrative—a crappy pen name for so fine a writer—offers an honest, deep-probing character study, untainted by the prejudices of youth, the willful ignorance and blatant denial that brands sexually active adults over a certain age as pervs, dirty old men, MILFs, DILFs, GILFs, trouts and cougars.

On the other hand, if we are to be labeled in any case, why not simply turn and embrace the labels?

The product of a young man’s cock is as elixir to my antiquated soul; I settle into the cocoon of my sofa and replay a recording of Paloma Faith at the Albert Hall. I consider the sound of applause. Like falling rain; heavy and relentless, and I wonder what it’s like to be on stage accompanied by a sparkling voice, an orchestra, chorus, and backing singers, and yet alone. I imagine those thunderous handclaps are for me, and take a bow. Faith’s dress is beautiful, crafted in late forties style, with matching shoes; they look handmade. I shall buy myself a perfect copy of the outfit and wear it to my debut gang-bang date. My Play On. I want to be played, a trail of many fingers on my vibrating skin, a hum of cells, thrumming sensation to my aching core.

The truth is that desire evolves, tastes become more sophisticated—or sometimes ferociously simple—the mature pallet craves what young tastebuds are incapable of sensing. Age perceives time differently than youth, and can be more deliberate in going after what it wants. But the flame never truly burns out, though our bodies sometimes betray us, gravity takes its toll, and experience etches its history of stress, pain, and laughter in our very flesh.  

Nature waves a heraldic flag of symptoms as an alert to the crumbling decay of lost youth. Simon Conrad arrived at other side of my acrid years, appearing as an unlikely savior, triggering an abundance of plentiful hope. My cells sparkled like new growth in a spring garden and I allowed the sun to open my petals, reveal my nectar, and now they suck where the bee sucks . . .

The five stories in this little collection artfully interlock to form a satisfying narrative totality. The writing is elegant and engaging for the most part, though the author gets carried away with the very sophistication of her prose from time to time. This is especially evident in the third story, Lethal Lesson, which wanders dangerously into the realm of effusive language. On balance, though, Generation Game is among the most deeply satisfying, thoughtful, perceptive, and pleasingly, deliciously mature erotic reading experiences of recent memory.

Enthusiastically recommended! 

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