Frenzy. 60 Stories of Sudden Sex - book by Cleis Press Inc. - review by Jenny Swallows

Frenzy. 60 Stories of Sudden Sex

Book by Cleis Press Inc.

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We all like a quickie, but these may be too quick

Sixty stories sounds like a lot of bang for your buck, but ultimately Frenzy will leave you a long way from satisfied.
The handful of stories that do entertain definitely are worth reading...
... sadly, the bulk of this book just doesn't hit the spot.
Rating by reviewer:
somewhat useful review
The title tells you what to expect. Frenzy. Fast and furious. Very little set up, no time to waste on in-depth description. Just get down and with it, and then walk away.

Which may or may not be the best approach to writing erotica and, having finished Frenzy in a couple of evenings, I'm leaning towards the former. Editor Alison Tyler explains at the outset, "I want you to lose yourself in the sizzle of a single sentence." And occasionally the authors within pull it off. But too often, a promising scenario is over so quickly that the book could as easily have been titled "Premature Ejaculation," and you're left sitting there wondering... wow, was that it? To paraphrase Julius Caesar, "I saw, I conquered, I came in seconds."

Highlights. Tara Alton's "Mute Witness" is beautifully freaky, especially if you still have all your childhood toys on display,and ADR Forte's "Paper Clips," which is also one of the longest tales within, is worth rereading once or twice, no nicely nuanced is this tale of pain and purpose. Janine Ashbless' "Pirate Treasure" is as furtive as it is fiery, and ends with a wry smile as well. Sommer Marsden's "Risk" is as brisk and hurried as its protagonists needs it to be, and I think we will all enjoy Elspeth Potter's "Unlimited Minutes," simply because we know, or at least can imagine, exactly how it feels. It's funny, isn't it - cellphones set to vibrate have replaced a lot of things in life, but the spin cycle too? Call me now!

Other stories work as well, but still the overall impression is of way too many tales that could and should have offered a lot more, and very few that actually capture the supercharged nuclear fission that the title, and the intentions, presumably set out to deliver. Because a true quickie, a great quickie, is not distinguished by its speed. It's the thrill, the shock, the sheer unexpectedness, the brittle brutality and breathtaking brinksmanship of two bodies merging with no warning whatsoever, driven only by desire and sheer opportunism. By those standards, Frenzy is more like the construction site worker who grins from his girder, and shouts ribald comments at the cute girls on the street. So just keep walking and he'll soon be out of earshot.
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