Sunday, 24 June 2018


Truth and lies, lies and truth and which is which? Can the truth be hidden in a lie and a lie be veiled in the truth?Suppose there are secrets too? Just the knowledge that something is hidden, well, reality can become a little blurred and obscure. When Patrick West meets Jack Prior in Daniel Kemp’s “What happened in Vienna Jack?” an investigation into police corruption in Soho leads, indirectly, to what could become a world ending catastrophe.

“What Happened in Vienna Jack?” Is a thriller, a tale of espionage and deceit, a story where a turn of reality can change with the turn of a page. I am constantly amazed by Daniel Kemp’s ability to not only keep control over a vast array of characters but, simultaneously, weave an erudite absorbing narrative that leaves me confounded. It was difficult to harness what I was reading. Daniel Kemp is meticulous in his research and extremely knowledgeable about Europe’s political landscape of 1933-1970.

In November of 1937 a violation, somewhere in Europe and prior to WW2, precipitates the unfolding narrative. Like any violation it is cruel, humiliating...just by reading about it, I felt dirty. The violation involves a prominent Nazi and a member of the British monarchy...see what I mean about secrets? This secret is so controversial (and “controversial” here is a massive understatement) that it is hidden, even to the point of murder, for fear of the secret being divulged. It’s an adroit piece of writing.

When I’ve posted this review I shall be reading “What Happened in Vienna Jack?” again. I think that most lovers of the thriller genre will feel the same. I’m not ready to leave either the characters, or this compulsive, gripping narrative...I’ll linger over every paragraph. And I’m pleased to learn that this book is just part one of a book series. If I haven’t made it clear enough, this book is highly recommended.

What Happened in Vienna Jack? Is at Amazon US and at Amazon UK





Thursday, 3 May 2018

LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT






“Why? A Complicated Love” Is a lyrical, urgent tale of love, despair, betrayal and retribution told by my favourite author, Daniel Kemp.

The novel is told as a first person narrative by Terry Meadows. The reader is privy to Terry’s thoughts..the story unfolds through the effect that the main characters have on his life.

Daniel Kemp sets a quiet steady pace, there’s no rush, as he introduces his main players...Terry, Laura, Francis and Sammi. We are quickly drawn in to this tale of distorted sexuality. Just a few paragraphs details a reason for Francis’ debauched, controlling behaviour. It’s a behaviour that has Sammi and Laura’s seeming acquiescence. And simply the fact that Terry is witness to this sick, claustrophobic family, means that he also is a puppet to Francis’ depravity. It is Francis who drives the narrative.

Do you believe in love at first sight? No? Please suspend your disbelief. I’m talking about the sort of love that Shakespeare crafts for his tragedy Romeo and Juliet, or the poignant lyrics that Stephen Sondheim writes for the equally tragic West Side Story.

For an audience to be drawn into an intense, heated whirl of recognition takes a skilled, sensitive writer...eyes meet across a crowded room..forgive the cliche, but that’s the moment I’m trying to conjure up…and it’s exactly that moment that Daniel Kemp, crafts, so exquisitely, in the meeting of Terry and Laura.

Many Poets, Artists and Novelists believe in love at first sight...they spend their creative lives telling us about it, we feel their heat as they chant their magic..

I love this novel by Daniel Kemp, it is pure pleasure to read. Where Erotica occurs, it’s entirely appropriate…as is violence. You can, if you like, dissect the narrative, but in the process don’t lose sight of a beautifully written, absolutely engaging story. I shall certainly be reading a lot more from Daniel Kemp.

This book is available at all Amazon outlets. Amazon UK and Amazon US

Tuesday, 3 April 2018

THE DESOLATE GARDEN by Daniel Kemp





It’s a thriller, it’s a murder mystery...it’s a tale of lies, spies, espionage and dark, disturbing family secrets; secrets that go back decades. I’m talking about Daniel Kemp’s masterpiece, The Desolate Garden.

Harry Paterson’s father, Lord Paterson has been murdered. The police have ascertained when, and how, but no one knows why...money? Could be, the Paterson family are extremely wealthy.

Daniel Kemp writes in a very visual way; he provokes the reader’s imagination. I can see the opening scene as a piece of theatre. The stage is dimly lit, almost dark. A piano, just one soft note at a time, picks out a sinister child’s nursery rhyme..maybe Three Blind Mice or Oranges and Lemons.

The effect of the combination of darkness, light, shade and sound sets an ambivalent atmosphere of uncertainty for the viewer. The written scene will have a similar effect on the reader. We are drawn into the beginning of a narrative which we know took skill and courage from the writer.

Lighting gradually presents a man, seated at a small table. He picks up a glass of whisky from the table, stares into it, then sips. The piano stops. A woman’s voice calls out to him..”tell me a joke”...as she speaks, the light falls on her, she is very beautiful. He responds to her.. “come and join me.”

It’s a pivotal moment; this meeting of Harry Paterson and Judith Meadows drives the narrative.

The amount of research that has gone into The Desolate Garden is phenomenal. The writer leads us back to the actions of Harry Paterson’s Great-Grandfather, Maudlin Paterson during the 1936-1939 Spanish Civil War. His actions precipitate events that are yet to come. The reader won’t need an extensive knowledge about that conflict, but an illegitimate child is born and without him there would be no story.

Daniel Kemp’s knowledge of the Cold War is extensive. I’m of the same generation as he...I grew up knowing about the Iron Curtain, and, as Russia was then, the USSR. I don’t recall there being a lot on News reports about how, if at all, we got any information about life in the USSR, but I remember reports about the Cuban missile crisis.

The Cold War was a state of geopolitical tension after World War II between powers in the Eastern Bloc (the Soviet Union and its satellite states) and powers in the Western Bloc (the United States, its NATO allies and others).

“There’s an iron curtain being pulled across the whole of Europe and Stalin has the cord”

Rewind to early morning on Tuesday 16 October 1962, John F. Kennedy's national security assistant, McGeorge Bundy, brought to the President's bedroom some high-altitude photographs taken from U-2 planes flying over Cuba. They showed Soviet soldiers hurriedly and secretly setting up nuclear-armed missiles.

At its closest distance, Communist Cuba is just 103 miles from Florida...too close for comfort.

For some time previously the Soviets had openly been sending weaponry to Cuba, including surface-to-air anti-aircraft missiles (SAMs). To deflect any criticism about this from the Republicans, who were busy campaigning for the November congressional elections, Kennedy had said he would not protest about such defensive weaponry being installed in Cuba, but warned that if the Soviets ever introduced offensive weapons, 'the gravest issues would arise.'

For 14 days during that October of 1962, the world held its breath as President John F. Kennedy and Party Leader Nikita Khrushchev tried to reach a compromise and avoid nuclear war.

By the third day the President publicly announced the presence of Soviet missiles in Cuba, and ordered a blockade to prevent the introduction of further missiles, further to this, he demanded that the Soviets withdraw the missiles already there. (Both for legal reasons and for resonance with Franklin Roosevelt's 'Quarantine Address' of 1937, the term 'quarantine' was substituted for 'blockade'.)

If Khrushchev did not capitulate within a day or two, a US air attack on Cuba would follow, followed by an invasion.

After a long period of tense negotiations, an agreement was reached between U.S. President John F. Kennedy and Khrushchev. Publicly, the Soviets would dismantle their offensive weapons in Cuba and return them to the Soviet Union, subject to U.N. verification, in exchange for a U.S. public declaration and agreement to avoid invading Cuba again.

In relation to Daniel Kemp’s The Desolate Garden, it seems to me pertinent that I add these paragraphs about the Cuban Crisis and the stamp of the Cold War on Europe. It illustrates what dangerous times we lived in...and still live in, bearing in mind what happened three weeks ago in the sleepy town of Salisbury UK.

Some people believe, because of the nerve agent used in Salisbury, we are on the brink of another Cold War…I don’t know, but bearing in mind how closed off, mentally and physically, the USSR was during the years of the Cold War, I don’t think it would be a good thing. Certainly not for Human Rights.

Countries are always interested, intrigued and alarmed by what other countries are doing. Maybe espionage has always existed..agents, double agents. I was too young, at the time, to understand about the so called Cambridge Five, the young men lured into spying for the USSR, but I’ve read about them since. The West had spies within the USSR, spying for us and it is against this backdrop that The Desolate Garden is thrown into relief.

Daniel Kemp’s book illustrates one family member, long since passed, embroiled in a vortex of politics, power, espionage and money laundering.

There’s a shattering betrayal too with an ending that I didn’t see coming and totally blew me away.

Before coming to The Desolate Garden, the only book I’d read in this genre was John le Carré’s Tinker, Tailor, Solder, Spy. Daniel Kemp’s book equals that superb spy thriller, in fact The Desolate Garden easily supersedes it.

The Desolate Garden by Daniel Kemp is at Amazon US and Amazon UK

Saturday, 27 January 2018

SUPPORTING HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL DAY. The Night Porter, directed by Liliana Cavani, featuring Charlotte Rampling and Dirk Bogarde



Directed and written by Liliana Cavani, the controversial film “The Night Porter,” “Il Portiere di Notte”, was released in 1974. The film features Dirk Bogarde, as Max, a discreet, unassuming night porter in an exclusive Viennese hôtel and Charlotte Rampling, Lucia, as the figure from his past, who continues to haunt Max.

The year is 1957. Max tends to the hôtel guest’s needs; everything to providing a glass of cold water, to a bed-warming gigolo. Through a series of flashbacks, we learn that during the dark years of World War II, Max was an S.S. officer at a Nazi concentration camp where Lucia was a beautiful, young prisoner. Lucia, became Max's sexual slave, a position that she apparently relished.

The moment where the two recognise each other in the lobby of the hôtel is compelling. Both remember. The flashbacks tell of the chilling photographs Max took of Lucia, while pretending to be a physician. Through the flashbacks appropriate to Lucia, the viewer learns of episodes of rape, sodomy, and torture. Lucia is afraid. The viewer soon realises that it is not Max that she is afraid of, but the primal, carnal power of their relationship.

Max was not simply Lucia’s tormentor. He was her protector. It is a scenario which we see rewritten in our own contemporary erotica. “The Night Porter” is a pertinent template for any “Daddy’s Little Girl”, tale; it whispers and awakens forbidden fantasies. It allows us the space to relish the darker side of desire.

Charlotte Rampling, for her part, insisted that she knew nothing about sadomasochism before embarking on the film. 'The girl had to be an innocent, both fearful, and tempted by the mysteries of unknown pleasures,' she said.


If the scene in the hôtel lobby is compelling, the scene at the opera is electric. Max is seated a few rows behind Lucia and her husband. A sensation causes Lucia to turn. She meets Max’s eyes. She turns away, then turns again. He is still there, willing her to hold his gaze. She turns away, then looks again. Max is gone.

Lucia stays in Vienna after her husband travels on. She wants to see Max, and they find themselves caught up in a renewal of their former sadomasochistic relationship. But Max is to be tried for his war crimes. His former S.S. comrades have been carefully destroying documents and "filing away" witnesses to clear all their names, and while Max tries to keep Lucia's existence a secret from them, they eventually find out about her. They consider her a threat, and they urge Max to turn her over to them. He quits his job, and he and Lucia hide out in his apartment, while his former friends keep watch, waiting for the opportunity to strike.

Filmmaker Liliana Cavani visited a Nazi concentration camp after WW II and interviewed a woman who had been involved in a sadomasochistic relationship with a guard. She then made her story the basis for this powerfully, compelling film.

Liliana Cavani certainly gives her audience a strange and unforgettable picture that questions deeply the psyches of torturers and the tortured, “The Night Porter” presents its psychoanalytically provocative material without exploitation. On another level it deals with the psychological condition known as Stockholm Syndrome
where the victim develops an empathy with his or her abuser.

In an iconic scene, Lucia sings a Marlene Dietrich song to the concentration camp guards while wearing pieces of an SS uniform, and Max "rewards" her with the severed head of a male inmate who had been bullying the other inmates. Max has previously described his relationship with Lucia as “Biblical,” but he cannot remember the story in the Bible that draws him. Then he remembers. It is the story of Salome. King Herod presents Salome with the severed head of John the Baptist as a reward for her display of erotic dance.


In responses to “The Night Porter”, Liliana Cavani was both celebrated for her courage in dealing with the theme of sexual transgression and, simultaneously, castigated for the controversial manner in which she presented that transgression: within the context of a Nazi Holocaust narrative. The film has been accused of mere sensationalism: film critic Roger Ebert calls it "as nasty as it is lubricious, a despicable attempt to titillate us by exploiting memories of persecution and suffering.” Given the film's dark and disturbing themes and a somewhat ambiguous moral clarification at the end, “The Night Porter”, has tended to divide audiences. It is, however, the film for which Liliana Cavani is best known.

I was transfixed by Liliana Cavani’s film when I first saw it, many years ago. I was transfixed again when I watched it yesterday. “The Night Porter” tells of terrible things, and the Holocaust tells a tale of the worst that human beings can ever be. Would Max and Lucia have entered into this distorted, warped love affair -- and it is most certainly, definitely a true love affair, without the Holocaust? Well, of course we don’t know. Would our world today be the same had the Holocaust never happened? Again, we don’t know. The Holocaust is our shame as human beings. We need to be reminded, we need the mirror to be held up to our dirty faces, and if this can be only achieved through a film such as “The Night Porter,” well that’s fine with me.

“The bulk of the Nazi war crime trials took place right after 1945. Basically, from 1945 to 1949, there were parallel Allied tribunals and German courts. The German courts largely dealt with crimes committed against German citizens; the Allied courts dealt with all others, which meant the majority of Nazi crimes. These proceedings petered out by the end of the 1940s and early 1950s largely because West German society suppressed the past and preferred not to talk about it. Nazi crimes hardly found mention in public discourse in the early 1950s.


Thus the Ulm trial in 1958 marked the reopening of criminal proceedings against Nazi criminals. It was seen as a sign that the West German judicial system was taking the Nazi past more seriously.  But the most striking thing about the Ulm trial was that it made clear that Nazi atrocities were not just committed within the Third Reich but largely in Eastern Europe.”
Dieter Pohl

Saturday, 20 January 2018

THOUGHTS ABOUT INCEST.




Lillah McCarthy (1875-1960) as Jocasta, Oedipus’ wife and mother, in “Oedipus Rex” by Sophocles. Painted by Harold Speed 1913


Incest. The final taboo. It is taboo, as far as I am able to ascertain, in every society on the planet. The exceptions to the rule appear to be royal dynasties, in particular the ancient Egyptian Kings and Queens.

We’ve heard of Freud’s theory about the Oedipus complex: it is the famous Greek tragedy that the theory is based on.

The writers of the Greek myths warn of what will happen if we break the taboo; if we embrace the depravity. Sophocles, Aeschylus  and Euripides have all dramatised the story.

Most writing on Oedipus comes from the 5th century BC, and the stories deal mostly with Oedipus' downfall. Various details appeared on how Oedipus rose to power. Here is the outline of this powerful tale.

King Laius of Thebes, heard of the Sphinx’ prophecy that his son will kill him. Fearing the prophecy, Laius pierces his baby son’s feet and leaves him out to die, but a herdsman finds him and takes him away from Thebes. Years later, Oedipus, the grown up son, hears a similar prophecy, applied to himself, and not knowing he was adopted, leaves home in fear that he would kill his father and marry his mother. Laius, meanwhile, ventures out to find a solution to the Sphinx' riddle. As prophesised, Oedipus crosses paths with Laius and this leads to a fight where Oedipus slays Laius and most of his guards. Oedipus has killed his father. Oedipus then defeats the Sphinx by solving a mysterious riddle to become king. He marries the widowed queen Jocasta, not knowing she is his mother. After many years of prosperity and conjugal bliss, a plague falls on the people of Thebes. Upon discovery of the truth, Oedipus blinds himself and Jocasta hangs herself. After Oedipus is no longer king, Oedipus' sons kill each other.

Sophocles’ “Oedipus the King”, has the Chorus, screaming out Oedipus’ crime. The audience, having seen the horrific tragedy unfold, has been anticipating this moment.
“O Oedipus, name for the ages --
One and the same wide harbour served you
                                    son and father both
son and father came to rest in the same bridal chamber.
How, how, could the furrows your father ploughed
Bear you, your agony, harrowing on
In silence O so long?

                                    But now for all your power
Time, all-seeing Time has dragged you to the light,
Judged your marriage monstrous from the start --
The son and the father, tangling, both one --
O child of Laius, would to god
            I’d never seen you, never never!
            Now I weep like a man who wails the dead
And the dirge comes pouring forth with all my heart!”

Translation by Robert Fagles.


The Chorus laments Oedipus’ crime. Just because he didn’t know that Queen Jocasta was his mother, he is still guilty, and the Chorus damns him in their profound disgust. Jocasta hangs herself. Oedipus puts out his eyes with pins from her brooches.

“But Oedipus’ destiny still moves us, only because it might have been ours — because the Oracle laid the same curse upon us before our birth as upon him. It is the fate of all of us, perhaps, to direct our first sexual impulse towards our mother and our first hatred and our first murderous wish against our father. Our dreams convince us that this is so.” Sigmund Freud. “The Interpretation of Dreams.” 1901

“In Freudian terms, we draw from the myth of Oedipus, designating attraction on the part of the child toward the parent of the opposite sex, and rivalry and hostility toward the parent of its own. It occurs during the phallic stage of the psycho-sexual development of the personality, approximately years three to five. Resolution of the Oedipus complex is believed to occur by identification with the parent of the same sex and by the renunciation of sexual interest in the parent of the opposite sex. Freud considered this complex the cornerstone of the superego and the nucleus of all human relationships.” WIKI

Fast forward millennia. “Brookside” 1996: A British Soap, famous for its challenges to our views. The incest storyline, in which brother and sister Nat and Georgia Simpson were discovered in bed together by their younger brother, is described by Phil Redmond, the producer, as “breaking the last television taboo.” It was so shocking an MP urged viewers to complain "in their millions".

Phil Redmond, doesn’t shy away from the issue, he tackles it head on. It is a consensual incestuous relationship -- Nat and Georgia, the brother and sister BOTH WANT to have sex with one another.

One perceptive student says; “We tried to discuss the incest storyline with teachers at school. I think they were thoroughly disturbed by what we were watching as one encouraged us to watch "normal" television. I suppose she meant games shows.”

Another student says; “I think the problem with this storyline is that it came in an era where society was just not ready. Not suggesting that they’re ready now, but consensual sex between family members back in the 90’s wasn’t seen as effective story-telling, let alone talked about. Now, however, you have to look at the latest magazine on the shelf and there is probably some true-life story about GSD (Genetic Sexual Disorder). As ludicrous as that sounds, it exists. Usually, it’s contrived, so that the two people of the same genetic family meet as adults, not where they grew up together like Nat and Georgia did.”

Here’s the episode “Family Therapy” from the Soap, “Brookside”. Okay, it lacks the sophistication of Sophocles, and it certainly does not conform to Aristotle’s concept for tragedy as discussed in his “Poetics”, but in its way, it is more effective for today’s TV generation audience. It is more accessible.



As far as I can remember from the TV soap, Nat and Georgia move away from Brookside Close, to live out their lives happily and anonymously somewhere in the south of England.

Nothing adds that certain flavour to a storyline like a romantic or sexual attraction between siblings. Most of the time it may be merely implied, but sometimes it's laid out right in the open for the viewer to see. Its presence in a story usually adds a great deal of emotional intensity.

Frequently, actual incest is avoided through the device of siblings who aren't really — they're fostered, or step-sibs, or adopted. Thus, while in arbitrary terms of a relationship they may be brother or sister, in "true" terms of blood they are not, and may pursue their chosen target with relative impunity. 

I found this on the Web. “Forbidden Love” Can sex between close relatives ever be acceptable? Johann Hari on the queasy issue of 'consensual incest.’ The Guardian newspaper,  Wednesday 9th January 2002.


“The exponents of incest that we talked to in cyberspace were very keen to draw a distinction between "consensual incest" on the one hand and abuse, rape and paedophilia on the other. Consensual incest, we were told by "JimJim2" from Ontario, is ‘when two adults who just happen to be related get it on. You can't help who you fall in love with, it just happens. I fell in love with my sister and I'm not ashamed ... I only feel sorry for my mom and dad, I wish they could be happy for us. We love each other. It's nothing like some old man who tries to fuck his three-year-old, that's evil and disgusting ... Of course we're consenting, that's the most important thing. We're not fucking perverts. What we have is the most beautiful thing in the world.’”

This blog post has been compiled from my own studies of Freud's Oedipus Complex and sources from the Web.

Thursday, 7 December 2017

THE PRISON OF THE ANGELS by Janine Ashbless


I Didn’t Know She’d Be So Kinky!
Janine Ashbless

You know that thing where characters get away from you while you’re writing, and do something you aren’t expecting?

That happened for me with Milja, the heroine of my Book of the Watchers trilogy. When I started the first book, Cover Him with Darkness, I thought she was going to be sort of vanilla. A bit sheltered due to an isolated childhood, a bit geeky, longing for passionate love but not in any knowing way.

Then she freed a fallen angel who became her demon lover, and because Azazel is necessarily a strong, even overwhelming personality, I figured Milja would have to be fairly happy to let him take the lead in bed. “She’s a bit submissive,” I told myself.
But Azazel isn’t just dominant, he’s wicked and seriously lacking in social boundaries. He likes to show her off, getting her naked and having sex in public. “That makes sense,” I reassured myself. “She’s always been the invisible girl: now she gets off on everyone watching her and her gorgeous bloke.”

But by the second volume of the series, In Bonds of the Earth, Milja’s deep in a not-really-platonic affair of frustration with a man, Egan Kansky, too. Is she so drawn to him because he’s the stable, kindly, human partner she can’t find in Azazel? Is she hell — her relationship with Egan has turned out to be even kinkier than her passion for Azazel!  Milja spent a childhood with an angel chained in the cellar, and it’s affected her deepest fantasies. She likes her strong, dominant masculine guys all tied up and helpless and suffering. Azazel won’t indulge her – he doesn’t have a submissive bone in his body – so she can’t help getting the hots for Egan and his admirable capacity for, ahem, soaking up damage…

By book three, The Prison of the Angels, the three-way relationship has left vanilla far behind. There’s a long and elaborate scene in which all three of them … well, that would be telling! Suffice it to say that Egan has all his boundaries pushed to the max and Milja has her most shameful fantasies exposed and fulfilled.
I wasn’t expecting to write this when I started. I thought I’d just stick to romance, mostly. Oh well ;-) Milja – sub, exhibitionist, shamefaced sadist – has turned out to be a bit of a shock for her poor writer!

Excerpt:
Egan’s got his eyes screwed shut, his head flung back, his throat stretched taut. Azazel looks down critically at his victim and slaps his still-pulsing cock hard enough to swing it.
“Again,” he says. “Harder.”
Somehow, Egan’s flesh stiffens obediently. That’s when I see the deadly little tethers snap and writhe loose from the bed. They stay knotted around his cock and balls like bizarre Christmas streamers, but at least he is free from the iron ring.
“Get further up the bed.”
Egan opens his eyes. He seems to realize slowly that he’s no longer tied down, but when he does he shuffles on his back away from Azazel with pitiful alacrity, as if he somehow thinks he can escape that long reach. He casts me a wild, shamed look.
“That’ll do,” Azazel decides. “You’d like to ride that now, wouldn’t you Milja? His rod and his staff will comfort you…here in the Valley of the Shadow.”
Ride that? Yes, always.
What is he planning?
I climb back onto the bed, nervous. Egan is looking from me to Azazel and back again as if we are conspiring assassins. His lips are swollen.
And I will fasten him as a peg in a firm place; and he shall be for a glorious throne,” quotes Azazel, wandering around to slap my ass in encouragement. “Get up on your throne, little harlot.”




I thought I was a good girl. I thought that no matter what others did for my sake, I could stay innocent. I thought that as long as I acted out of love, I’d be blameless.

I was wrong, wasn’t I?


Milja Petak’s world has fallen apart.

Her lover, the fallen angel Azazel, has cast her aside in rage and disgust. The other contender for her heart, the Catholic priest Egan Kansky, was surrendered back into the hands of the shadowy Vatican organization, Vidimus, after sustaining life-threatening injuries.

She has killed and she has betrayed. She is alone, homeless, and at the end of her tether - torn apart by guilt and the love she has lost. But neither Heaven nor its terrifying representatives on Earth have finished with Milja. Both of her lovers need her in order to further their very different plans, and both passionately need her, though they may try to deny it.

Milja is once again forced into a series of choices as she uncovers the secrets Heaven has been guarding for centuries. But this time it is not just her heart at stake, or even the fate of a fallen angel.

This time, the choices she make will change everything.

This time it’s the End of the World.

The Prison of the Angels
by Janine Ashbless

The Prison of the Angels, the final novel in the Book of the Watchers trilogy, and the story of a young woman who releases a fallen angel from centuries of imprisonment, is now available from Sinful Press.
“When there’s war in Heaven, on which side will you stand?”
Genres: Hot M/F/M Romance, Thriller, Supernatural
Pages:  388

Prison of the Angels is available at 

Sinful Press  Amazon UK  Amazon US  Google Play and Kobo





Janine's Photo, by David Woolfall









Thursday, 16 November 2017

Vampires, Witches, Fairy Tales and Sexual Initiation.





Anne Rice is perhaps best known for her vampire tales; tales which have a certain erotic frisson. She amazes me with her creative energy, creating not one, but two lengthy sagas. The vampire tales reach back into the dawn of time, building on Bram Stoker’s Dracula and creating a new mythology around the very beginnings of vampire evolution.

Someone correct me please if I am wrong, but I think that Anne Rice was the first to make vampires sexy, with their dark brooding erotic intentions.

Then there is the saga of the Mayfairs. A wealthy and powerful family of witches, breeding and mutating over the generations. Incestuous, charismatic -- a blip in their DNA produces a strain of monsters, the Taltos.

Anne Rice brings the two sagas together in her final novel; “Blood Canticle.”

What is not so well known, is that Anne Rice also has written erotica under the name of A.N. Roquelaure. Her “Sleeping Beauty” trilogy is loosely based on the fairy tale of the Sleeping Beauty. It is an allegory of sexual adolescence, sexual desire and finally, sexual maturity. The three books are: The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty”, “Beauty’s Punishment” and “Beauty’s Release”.

They are erotic BDSM novels dealing with a wide spectrum of fetish and fantasy. They describe the sexual adventures of the female protagonist Beauty in a medieval fantasy world. Anne Rice doesn’t stop at Male/Dom and Fem/Dom, she covers fetish as diverse as anal fisting and pony play. There is rape as a fantasy; she also touches on bestiality. They were first published in America in the 1980’s.

In the familiar fairy tale, the beautiful sleeping princess is awakened by a kiss from a handsome prince. In Anne Rice’s version, the prince wakes the princess with a violent rape.

Anne Rice's retelling of the Beauty story probes the unspoken implications of this suggestive tale by exploring its undeniable connection to sexual desire. Here the Prince reawakens Beauty, not with a kiss, but with sexual initiation. His reward for ending the hundred years of enchantment is Beauty's complete and total enslavement to him as Anne Rice explores the world of erotic yearning and fantasy in a classic that becomes a compelling experience.

About the same time that Anne Rice published the Beauty trilogy in America, the writer and Academic, Angela Carter published her collection of tales in “The Bloody Chamber.”

Angela Carter says of her collection:
“My intention was not to do 'versions' or, as the American edition of the book said, horribly, 'adult' fairy tales, but to extract the latent content from the traditional stories.”


Both writers are talking about the hidden side of our psychology. The side, that in the cold light of day we dare not own.

The tales from both writers give us permission to fantasise and even act upon our darkest dreams. The stories liberate us and set us free from guilt, fear and shame.

Freud talked about the Id. Here is what he says:


"It is the dark, inaccessible part of our personality, what little we know of it we have learned from our study of the Dreamwork and of the construction of neurotic symptoms, and most of that is of a negative character and can be described only as a contrast to the ego. We approach the id with analogies: we call it a chaos, a cauldron full of seething excitations.... It is filled with energy reaching it from the instincts, but it has no organization, produces no collective will, but only a striving to bring about the satisfaction of the instinctual needs subject to the observance of the pleasure principle."


“The id is the unorganised part of the personality structure that contains a human's basic, instinctual drives. Id is the only component of personality that is present from birth. The id contains the libido, which is the primary source of instinctual force that is unresponsive to the demands of reality. The id acts according to the "pleasure principle", seeking to avoid pain or unpleasure (not 'displeasure') aroused by increases in instinctual tension”

WIKI

“The mind of a newborn child is regarded as completely "id-ridden", in the sense that it is a mass of instinctive drives and impulses, and needs immediate satisfaction, a view which equates a newborn child with an id-ridden individual.”

Jungian psychoanalysis talks about “the Shadow”.

"Everyone carries a shadow," Jung wrote, "and the less it is embodied in the individual's conscious life, the blacker and denser it is. It may be (in part) one's link to more primitive animal instincts which are superseded during early childhood by the conscious mind.”


Jung also believed that "in spite of its function as a reservoir for human darkness—or perhaps because of this—the shadow is the seat of creativity.";so that for some, it may be, 'the dark side of his being, his sinister shadow...represents the true spirit of life as against the arid scholar.

Some of these ideas here are my own...I have also drawn from sources from the Web.