So, it turns out that we all like a naughty read, right? I mean, that’s what those-books-which-we-shan’t-mention-but-which-I-secretly-really-enjoyed really taught us, no? It’s not the S&M that really got us all hot and bothered though (especially as there, er, wasn’t really any), but just the skin-on-skin at-it-like-rabbits good old fashioned hanky panky and damaged white knight romance, right?
Anyway, ‘those books’ may have been the talk of the town last year, but they were hardly the first smutty reads in the world, and certainly not the most coffee-table worthy. So if, like me, you secretly enjoyed E.L James’s lip-bitingly repetitive vanilla shagathon, check out my list of five alternative erotic books to culture-up your Valentines Day.
1000 Nudes - A History of Erotic Photography from 1839-1939, Hans-Michael Koetzle and Uwe Scheid Erotic books don’t only come in the form of cringe-inducing prose. If you fancy mixing your erotic reading with some history/ want a really brilliant arty farty justification for your titillating tastes, then this is book of vintage sexy snaps is right up your street. History has never been so…er…stimulating.
Sap Rising, A.A GillA.A. Gill – reportedly Britain’s highest paid journalist, devilishly witty Sunday Times food critic and my personal hero, is the author of a secret saucy book. Well I say secret, it’s not, it’s actually available in all good book shops, but it seems I’m the only person who’s ever read it (which probably says as much about me, as the book). In 1996 A.A. put his sordid imagination down in prose, and the result is Sap Rising, a weird, wonderful, and indecently rude comic romp. You’ll never look at his stern, sophisticated by-line picture in the same way again. Believe me.
Playboy – the complete centrefoldsI’m sure this is a controversial one, and that some (ok, most) of you view Playboy as the ultimate symbol of the exploitation of women, and that I’ll be harangued in the comments box, BUT I don’t care, because I love the Playboy centrefolds, and can’t help seeing this as a collection of really gorgeous women looking strong, beautiful and SUPER HOT. Also, I’m endlessly fascinated by the stylistic shifts through the decades - from photographic style and furnishings, to fashion (yes, some of them are wearing *some* clothes!), fake vs. natural boobs and hair – both head and pubic.
The Budoir Bible, Betony VernonFash-wans first lady of filth, the erotic jeweller Betony Vernon (if you don’t know, get to know), has just written her very own guide to exotic bedroom shenanigans. And when I say exotic, I mean it. Forget the Joy of Sex, there’s nothing wholesome or ‘vanilla’ about this bedroom guide. Covering subjects such as rope bondage, erotic flagellation and the new erogenous zones (no, me neither!), and with chapter titles including ‘The Genital Gym’ and ‘The Anthems of Anal Sex’, this is not a bedroom guide for the faint hearted…or wimpy.
Pride and PromiscuityNo points for guessing the idea behind this book! Anyone (and I’m guessing that’s basically all of us) who has ever read a Jane Austen book, will probably, at some point, have secretly wondered/ imagined/ carefully plotted out step-by-step what happened when the lovers finally, er, consummated their love. And while there is definitely a case to be made that Jane Austen’s novels are perfect just as they are, and that it’s their innocence and romance that makes them so utterly charming, there’s also a case to be made that filling in the sexual gaps is fun, silly and really quite hot. So wrong, yet oh so right.
I’m really no expert on this topic (which anyone who is will attest to) – so if you think I’ve got this all wrong please share your fave saucy reads in the comment box below!
I can be found tweeting about all sorts of rubbish @MissSisiG.
Oh, p.s. fancy winning one of these rollicking good reads? Well you’re in luck, as thanks to the lovely ladies at Coco de Mer, we have a spanking new copy of Pride and Promiscuity to give away! Just tweet us @xoJaneUK using the #RudeRead before midnight on Friday and tell us why you deserve the book!