Monday, November 24, 2008
Porno, romance and loading the dice
I just read The Devil's Right Hand, the third in a series I enjoy by Lilith Saintcrow. Am I the only person who thinks the cover looks like the bank camera shot of hostage Patricia Hearst robbing the Hibernia Bank?
I did have an insight as I read this book into how paranormal romances target women's greatest wish/fear. To give a little background Dante Valentine is necromance who raises the dead and who has formed a relationship with a capital D Demon--the tragic Byronic figure to the tenth power. I don't want to put in much of a spoiler, but when the demon falls for the human, he literally falls....gives her a portion of his power and is inextricably linked to her.
A great deal of the tension in the series so far is Dante's inability to trust this bond. But what struck me was the tension between the Uber-testosterone-laced demonic hero and the way that the heroine has ensnared him.
This reminded me of a conversation with a gay male friend who had just read some women's erotica written by a friend from high school. He had to shake his head at what different fantasies women have. I can't speak with any authority about gay porn, but what little I've read of it leads me to believe that it's similar to heterosexual male porn--with lots of focus on equipment, anatomy and performance. Wait is that a car commercial?
What I've observed about erotica written by women for women is the degree to which power replaces plumbing as the focus. I'm not saying that porn written by women for women doesn't get into serious anatomical exploration. Please feel free to correct me if my baby boom generational thing makes me miss new developments in feminist sensory adventures, but as a general rule I think women often savor the validation involved in arousing desire as a major component of the erotic experience.
In the paranormal romance I see women protagonists loading the dice so that a little sliver of kryptonite pierces the male and renders flight impossible.
There's a similar dynamic of males who breed well in captivity in both of Laurel K. Hamilton popular paranormals series. In each of these the heroine has all the guys to herself and they cannot roam or stray.
And a "Hey Nonny Nonny" to ya'll.
From October 21 to November 24, 1978 I read:
Scribble Scribble by Nora Ephron
The Empty Copper Sea by John D. MacDonald
Confessions of a Compulsive Eater by Diane Broughton
Note: I read this during my dieting days, surprisingly enough when I stopped dieting I no longer had compulsive overeating problems. My own experience has been that the deprivation caused what I will now call "self-starvation related re-feeding."
Copper Gold by Pauline Glen Winslow
Who Really Wrote the Book of Mormon? by Wayne L. owdrey, Howard A Daws and Donald Scales
Will Shakespeare, the Untold Story by John Mortimer
The Duchess of Jermyn Street, the Life and Good Times of Rosa Lewis of the Cavendish Hotel by Daphne Fielding
Brat Race, Cartoons by Norman Thelwell
Who's Afraid of Elizabeth Taylor? by Brenda Maddox
Quiet as a Nun by Antonia Fraser
Tell Me Who I Am Before I Die by Christina Peters and Ted Schwartz
Note: Multiple personality
From October 21 to November 24, 2008 I read:
The Devil's Right Hand by Lilith Saintcrow
The Tomb by F. Paul Wilson
the Repairman Jack series