The Best Lesbian Erotica 2013
Cleis Press brings to us another delicious installment of smut that runs the gamut between soft and hardcore love-fests. In "The Best Lesbian Erotica 2013" there's a little something here for just about everybody who loves the ladies loving other ladies, be you Butch, Femme and all the other ladies standing (or laying spread eagle) in the middle.
The Forward by Editor Kathleen Warnock attempts to create a serious discussion by putting erotica within the context of professional NYC theater. She compares writing porn to expressing one's mature voice through art. It's a stretch, not because the porn medium isn't capable of transcending it's immediate purpose of getting the rocks of the reader off, because the writers of the enclosed smut wrote specifically for that purpose. And there is nothing wrong with that. The connotation that this compilation is intended for more than fulfilling the pleasure principle is a tad presumptuous considering the brevity of the stories enclosed and the immediacy of their tasks at hand.
The authors explore a lot of strange territory in this edition. The relationships, most of them temporary, explored push the definition of "consent." The lesson learned within these pages is that if the heroin doesn't challenge the status quo then she silently acquiesces to it even if the status quo is light bondage and an unsatisfied Dom. "Nothing If It Fades" takes a look at client/artist privilege relationships when CJ gives the tattoo of her life to a new client. "Woman-Time" presents a potential student study-date scenario during a sensitive time. "Stella Loves Bella" pushes the boundaries of the common lesbian relationship when an uninvited third party influences their intimacy. Then there's "Underskirts." It isn't strictly erotica but it titillates the brain when it doesn't titillate the nethers.
"Best Lesbian Erotica 2013" is good smut but it doesn't transcend the genre. The characters thoroughly enjoy themselves be they exercising creative use of a cucumber or dressing up as a submissive kitty. One would hope that by 2013 we ladies would have access to feminist erotica that includes effusive consent and a rocking good time for all parties. Asking for anything less than that after the dawn of the millennium would be uncivilized - which is ok, if that's your thing. This edition probably won't change your life for reading it but it may give you some new ideas and challenge your expectations in the boudoir.
Best Lesbian Erotica 2013
Edited by Kathleen Warnock
Selected and introduced by Jewelle Gomez