Anticipated Erotic Literature – My Education by Susan Choi

Susan Choi

One of the most anticipated books of 2013 is My Education by Susan Choi.  Susan is the author of three previous novels.  Her first novel, The Foreign Student, won the Asian-American Literary Award.   American Woman was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and A Person of Interest was a finalist for the PEN/Faulker Award.

My Education is a steamy, but very well-written book.  It’s about Regina, a graduate student, who is warned about a notorious professor who sleeps with students.  She becomes his teaching assistant and, in a surprising twist, has an affair with the professor’s wife.  The story spans fifteen years of Regina’s misadventures that are both erotic and catastrophic.

This novel is Amazon’s best book of the month – July 2013.  It has received rave reviews from many sources, including Publishers Weekly, Kirkus,  the Boston Globe, Vanity Fair, The Los Angeles Times, and The Washington Post.

Available at the Cheshire Library.

Note:  For sensitive readers, this book contains profanity, sexual references and overt sexual scenes.

Erotic Romance vs. Erotica

erotic fictionErotic fiction has been around for a very long time.  One of the most erotic pieces of poetry is the Song of Songs in the Bible.  The late 18th century brought us the French aristocrat, Marquis de Sade whose name gave us the sexual kink of “sadism”.  In the early 20th century, Lady Chatterley’s Lover and Tropic of Cancer helped reform obscenity laws in the United States.  In the 1970’s there was a dramatic increase in erotic fiction with Fear of Flying, and My Secret Garden.  The 1980’s brought us Anne Rice’s Sleeping Beauty Trilogy.  Many new publishers were founded to keep up with the demand of erotic fiction.

Erotic romance gained more ground with the introduction of ebooks.  By the mid 2000’s when traditional romance publishers saw the interest in this genre, they launched imprints dedicated to the print publication of erotic romance.

There has always been a strong core of erotic romance readers, but with the introduction of the Fifty Shades trilogy, erotic romance became more main stream.  However, it is often confused with erotica.   Generally speaking, erotic romance ends with “happily ever after” and erotica does not.  Erotic romance has more of a story line, exploring love and emotions and centering on two main characters.  It’s all about the romance with the sexual journey second.  It differs from mainstream romance because it is more sexually graphic.  Erotica is all about sex and little else.  It can entail some romance, but the focus is the sex.

The Cheshire Library has been seeing more and more requests for books like Fifty Shades, or erotic romance.  In an effort to fulfill our patrons’ requests, we have placed orders for similar books.  The second most popular author of this genre is Sylvia Day.  She self-published Bared To You and when Berkley Books heard how popular it was, they immediately published it in paper.  It was followed by Reflected In You and the third book in the trilogy, Entwined With You, will be released in June.

Megan Hart is another author that is very popular.  We own several of her titles.

  1. Tempted 
  2. Switch
  3. Deeper
  4. The Space Between Us

There are three other trilogies that are “like Fifty Shades” and they have received excellent reviews.  They are:

The Submissive Trilogy by Tara Sue Me

  1. The Submissive
  2. The Dominant (due out in August)
  3. The Training (due out in October

The Stark Trilogy by Julie Kenner

  1. Release Me
  2. Claim Me
  3. Complete Me (due out in July)

Breathless Trilogy by Maya Banks

  1. Rush
  2. Fever
  3. Burn (due out in August)

You may place holds on these items.  Let us know how you like them and if you’re interested in the library acquiring other titles.

Today’s Romance Novels

Today’s romance novels are not the bodice ripping, sex saturated, moaning and groaning, air head woman vs. chest beating man, empty stories of the 70’s and 80’s.  Today’s romances have evolved to complex plots, with smart, savvy heartsheroines and sensitive, flawed heroes.  The old romance books had the domineering man “rescuing” the passive woman.  Today you’ll find strong, independent women who sometimes do the “rescuing”.  While most of today’s books have the “happily ever after ending”, some stories end up “happy for now”, or “satisfied with my live as is”.  Most romances today don’t center around just the two main characters.  You learn about their families and friends, the town they live in, the world around them.  Today’s romance reader is smart, educated, thoughtful, and complex.  Today’s romances run the gambit from historical England, to the wild American West, to the military, to small town life.  They can be inspirational, suspenseful, other worldly and a whole host of subgenres – so many that everyone will be able to find the right fit for their reading pleasure.  It is a bit deceiving to label a book “romance”, when it fits quite nicely as a “literary” novel.  Below is a list of just a few of the romance subgenres.

  1. Medieval
  2. Historical (England, Scotland)
  3. American Historical
  4. Western (Contemporary)
  5. Western (Historical)
  6. Contemporary (Serious)
  7. Contemporary (Humorous)
  8. Suspense
  9. Thriller
  10. Military
  11. Paranormal(Vampires, werewolves, shapeshifters)
  12. Paranormal(Ghosts, witches)
  13. Futuristic/Fantasy
  14. Regency Romances
  15. Victorian Romances
  16. Inspirational(Historical)
  17. Inspirational(Contemporary)
  18. Erotic
  19. Chick Lit
  20. Romantic Mysteries

The Library has an excellent selection of mass market romance paperbacks located on the main level near the front windows.

Which is your favorite genre?