Patio lunches, lazy days on the beach, lying on a blanket at the park – all perfect settings for a good summer read. The energy of summer is whimsical and electric at the same time, which is ideal for getting lost in rich stories as life happens around us. We’ve browsed a few recommended and iconic titles to put together a summer reading list for you. And, of course they’re erotic selections because it makes reading that much more enticing.
In Delta of Venus Anaïs Nin conjures up a glittering cascade of sexual encounters. Creating her own ‘language of the senses’, she explores an area that was previously the domain of male writers and brings to it her own unique perceptions.
When it was first published in 1988, Pat Califia’s Macho Sluts, a collection of S/M stories set in San Francisco’s dyke bathhouses, sex parties, and S/M gay bars, shocked the lesbian community and caused an upheaval in the field of queer publishing.
He’s thirty-nine, a writer, dried up and waiting for better days. She’s ten years younger, an arts graduate, not doing anything much. Both married, both bored. Lust at first sight. And so they have sex with each other just about everywhere in just about every way, and their desire increases. They explore every facility available to intensify their excitement; toys and films and vodka and cocaine, and peep-shows, exhibitionism and voyeurism.
The novel tells the story of Divine, a drag queen who, when the novel opens, has died of tuberculosis and been canonized as a result. The narrator tells us that the stories he is telling are mainly to amuse himself whilst he passes his sentence in prison – and the highly erotic, often explicitly sexual, stories are spun to assist his masturbation. Jean-Paul Sartre called it “the epic of masturbation”.
Humbert Humbert, a literary scholar, has harbored a long-time obsession with young girls, or “nymphets” because of the premature death of a childhood sweetheart, Annabel Leigh. After an unsuccessful marriage and a brief period in a mental hospital after a breakdown, Humbert moves to the small New England town of Ramsdale to write. He rents a room in the house of a widow. He meets her 12-year-old daughter, Dolores, known as “Lo”, “Lola”, or “Dolly”, with whom he immediately becomes infatuated, partly due to her uncanny resemblance to Annabel; he privately nicknames her “Lolita”. Humbert stays at the house only to remain near her.
All summaries are from the links connected to each title.