Reviewed by Ulysses Dietz
Member of The Paranormal Guild Review Team
This is not the sort of thing I normally read – short format and intentionally erotica (as opposed to incidental erotica). It is a short book that is an anthology of short pieces all of which are, to use the tradition term, dirty.
The pleasant surprise in this little collection from Eric Alan Westfall is that they are by turns, clever, amusing, touching, and very smutty. They are not pornographic, in that the care with which they’re written suggests a literary purpose beyond the telling of sexual tales. Also, of interest is the fact that three of the five pieces involve men in very long-term relationships. Two of them involve fantasy or paranormal universes, while another is set in some version of England in 1816 in a bawdy house for men known as a molly house.
The Effing Fates Made Us Do It is a quick little one-sided conversation between a humanoid alien and his longtime husband – sweet and naughty and funny. Ain’t We Got Fun is sort of a variation on that idea, but between two professional men who play out a college-boy fantasy at the office, pleased at how rich their relationship still is after all these years. The Last Three is longer and lies on the page like a fragment of a fantasy epic—the looming end of a civilization of warrior monks for which three heroes have self-chosen to sacrifice their lives for the future of their people. It is the least sexual of all the tales, and deeply poignant, at least to anyone who’s ever watched Star Wars or read Harry Potter.
A Moment in Madam Maud’s Molly House is fascinating—a long exercise in lower-class London dialect set in post-Napoleonic England. Completely smutty also smart and comical in a weirdly anthropological way.
Finally, A Cocky Confession is longer and more complicated and the most unabashedly pornographic in its purpose, but still maintains a slick, clever writing style that feels almost like a stand-up routine delivered by a talented comedian. It also involves gay priests and tea-room sex which are both off-putting to me—but the skill of the author overcomes that with remarkable skill.
I’m a visual person, and thus written erotica has never been my favorite, but Eric Alan Westfall proves to me in this small collection that my prejudices can be overridden with skill and humor.