The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

19 May 2006

A book at bedtime

From Playboy via Kottke by way of Belhoste, this is the magazine's list of The 25 Sexiest Novels Ever Written:

  1. Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure (aka Fanny Hill) — John Cleland
  2. Lady Chatterley's Lover — D. H. Lawrence
  3. Tropic of Cancer — Henry Miller
  4. Story of O — Pauline Réage
  5. Crash — J. G. Ballard
  6. Interview With The Vampire — Anne Rice
  7. Portnoy's Complaint — Philip Roth
  8. The Magus — John Fowles
  9. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle — Haruki Murakami
  10. Endless Love — Scott Spencer
  11. Lolita — Vladimir Nabokov
  12. Carrie's Story — Molly Weatherfield
  13. Fear of Flying — Erica Jong
  14. Peyton Place — Grace Metalious
  15. Story of the Eye — Georges Bataille
  16. The End of Alice — A. M. Homes
  17. Vox — Nicholson Baker
  18. Rapture — Susan Minot
  19. Singular Pleasures — Harry Mathews
  20. In the Cut — Susanna Moore
  21. Brass — Helen Walsh
  22. Candy — Terry Southern/Mason Hoffenberg
  23. Forever — Judy Blume
  24. An American Dream — Norman Mailer
  25. The Carpetbaggers — Harold Robbins

I have read ten of these, as it happens. (And frankly, I thought Mantissa, being more of a head trip, was more erotic than The Magus, but nobody asked me.)

There are a couple of these I have not read about which I am curious, and, well, there's only one way to satisfy said curiosity. Or so they say.

Posted at 11:32 AM to Almost Yogurt


Harold Robbins. We'll that brings back memories. None of which I feel like I should talk about.

Posted by: Bobbert at 11:49 AM on 19 May 2006

I've only read Interview With a Vampire and I didn't find it as sexy as all my vampire-obsessed friends did. I'm just not that into having all my blood drained from my body. And that whole "submissive, surrender" thing gives me the creeps. It was still better than The Vampire Lestat, or any of Rice's subsequent phonebook-sized tomes.

As for the rest -- meh, "sexy" books are boring. People just lie there yakking about their parts, how dull. Go out and do something, you bores.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at 8:09 PM on 19 May 2006

I have a little more faith in the genre, if only because good sexy books seem to be so hard to find but nonetheless do seem to exist. Of course, they represent about one bazillionth of the market, but how surprising is that?

I must here single out Facing the Lions, by New York Times stalwart Tom Wicker, which ought to get some sort of award for Least Erotic Obligatory Sex Scene.

Posted by: CGHill at 10:05 PM on 19 May 2006

And we want to know which ten!!! I have read several myself but was most surprised to see The End of Alice by AM Homes. That book was full of violent prison sex and pedophile fantasies. Bizarre book. But the author is incredibly beautiful. I remember wondering how a woman who looks like she does could write a book like that. She wrote from the disturbed man's perspective, too. Weird. I then came to me senses and realized that what she looks like has nothing to do with her grey matter and runaway typewriter. Oh, you're probably curious by now:
http://www.yaddo.org/yaddo/jpegs/amhomes.jpg

Posted by: MikeSwi... at 1:22 PM on 20 May 2006

1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 11, 13, 14, 17.

I started 24, but never got through it.

Posted by: CGHill at 5:24 PM on 20 May 2006