Red Velvet and Absinthe - book by Cleis Press Inc. - review by SMichelle

Well... it's not my favorite book, but it's worth having.

This unique book is a great one to add to any erotica collection, but it's just not going to be for everyone. The situations described in the book may be a bit too "out there" for some, and for others it'll be way too tame. For me, it was just kind of okay; I enjoyed it, but I didn't love it.
Well-written, Book is well designed, Lots of variety in paranormal themes
Mostly heterosexual sex, Sex acts are pretty standard, Won't be for everyone
Rating by reviewer:
useful review

About author

This book is not simply written by one author; instead, it is a collection of various authors work. The stories are all edited and compiled by Mitzi Szereto.

Prior to reading this book, I had no idea who Mitzi Szereto was, so I decided to look up a bit of information on her. Ms. Szereto has written and edited several different books. She also has her own blog, and has a Web TV channel (Mitzi TV). She has also taught many different erotic writing workshops in Europe, and she's lectured at a few different British universities. It seems that her background is really quite impressive, honestly.

There are 15 different authors who have contributed to this book, as well as forward by Kelly Armstrong. So, needless to say, there is a lot of variety in this little book.

Content / Style / Audience

This is a truly unique collection of erotica (at least, as far as my explorations into it go), as this explores the "paranormal" side. This means that you're going to find things such as vampires, werewolves, magic, etc, in the pages of this book. Now, that's not going to be everyone's cup of tea, but, really, what is?

The book primarily involves heterosexual couples, with few exceptions, which is a bit of a shame. I like to see a bit of variety in my erotica, and I just didn't get that from this book (in regard to the pairing, at least). The stories that do involve same-sex pairing focus on girl on girl -- there is no male/male stories, unfortunately.

This isn't going to be for those of you seeking extremely kinky sex. The sex is pretty standard, although a bit rough at times. There is a tiny bit of bondage, but not a lot. I was looking for something super kinky, personally, so I was slightly disappointed.

All of the stories were well-written, but not all of them will suit every reader.


The design of this book isn't really anything special. It's a paperback book, with 225 pages. The front cover is glossy, and features a photograph of a woman in a mask. It's eye-catching, but it's not overly sexy. The book does say that it is an "Erotic Romance" book, though... so, it doesn't exactly qualify as discreet. Still, I'd have no trouble reading this in public, as a carefully placed hand can cover that minor detail.
This product was provided at a discounted price in exchange for an unbiased review. This review is in compliance with the FTC guidelines.
Become a Reviewer. Get free toys. Enjoy Special Deals
Do you like this review?
  • mpfm
    Thanks for the review.
  • Sera26
    Sounds like a fun read, too bad it's discountinued.
  • Cindi025
    Thanks for the review!
  • surreptitious
    With the popularity of erotic romance these days, I'd say that even if you didn't cover up the words, it'd probably still be socially acceptable, haha. Thanks for the review!
  • Kitka
    Thanks for sharing your review with us! I was hoping to get this before it got discontinued but alas I wasn't so fortunate.
  • Hallmar82
    I wish EF had this again too
  • PeaceToTheMiddleEast
    It sounds interesting and my cup of tea to bad it is gone. Thanks for sharing!
No discussions yet.
Thank you for viewing Red Velvet and Absinthe – book review page!