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Aqua Erotica: 18 Stories for a Steamy Bath Paperback – August 22, 2000


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Broadway Books; 1 edition (August 22, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0609806564
  • ISBN-13: 978-0609806562
  • Product Dimensions: 0.7 x 4.8 x 6.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,075,849 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"It would have to a very steamy bath indeed to match the temperature of the best stories collected here, which use the unifying metaphor of water to ring some sexy changes on the usual tanglings of orifices and organs. In Michael Hemmingson's "Movements," group sex in a Jacuzzi is only thebeginning for a husband and wife on the verge of breaking up -- until they find that infidelity isn't just an aphrodisiac, it's also good business. Hemmingson leavens the raunch with sly humor, as does Diane Kepler in "Hydrodynamica," the tale of a physics student who takes a "study break" with a rain-soaked fantasy. Poppy Z. Brite's "Nothing of Him Doth Fade" takes a darker view as it depicts a gay couple lost at sea during a diving tour, both of whom "did not trust death to give them that fabled final orgasm." Diving is also the excuse for "In Deep," by Simon Sheppard, an explicit account of a down-and-dirty gay tryst that escapes hard-core classification (if at all) only because of its razor-sharp prose. Billed as "the first waterproof book for adults" (that means plastic cover and pages), editor Mohanraj's volume of high-class erotica hardly needs such a gimmicky presentation. Hot and wet -- also extremely well crafted."
-- Kirkus Reviews

From the Publisher

From the editor's introduction:

"When I was first asked to do this anthology, it sounded like great fun -- reading erotic stories with a watery element, selecting the best to create a book that you could enjoy in the tub, at the beach -- while immersed in water yourself. And of course, I expected a veritable flood of stories to consider; water was so obviously a natural subject for erotica. Water is inherently sexy: it can be gentle, warm, delicious. I anticipated the incoming stories with nervous excitement.

I did receive many wonderful stories -- but their nature surprised me. I had expected the collection to be full of light stories, delightful little erotic tales -- cheerful, like a bubbling spring. There are certainly more than a few of those in this book. Mary Maxwell's "I Want" gives us a pool of water in the desert and two lovers who know how to enjoy it; Diane Kepler's "Hydrodynamica" is a tale of a student who is having a very difficult time studying her fluid dynamics; Kris Hawes gives us a teasing woman and her partner (who must choose between basketball and a steamy shower) in "Velvet Glove," and Thomas Roche's poor artist's model writhes delightfully on her couch in "Watercolor." These stories are rich, heartfelt, often complex, and I'm pleased to be able to share them with you; their playfulness is seductive and sexy. But not all the stories are so light-hearted.

There were dark currents in many of the stories I received. Love and lust, certainly -- but also pain and betrayal, deaths by drowning. Some of the stories were so painful that they moved me to tears as I read them. Bill Burkett's "Addiction" tells the story of a man trapped by his own desires, struggling to escape them; "Movements," by Michael Hemmingson, chronicles what may be the end, or new beginning, of a marriage, and the lengths to which a man will go to save it. A few stories pushed even further -- Simon Sheppard's "In Deep" is a story which explores the boundaries of consent, loss of control, and the desire for sexual oblivion; it terrified me even as it fascinated..."


More About the Author

Mary Anne Mohanraj received her Ph.D. from the University of Utah, specializing in post-colonial literature and creative writing. She is the author of several books, including her dissertation novel, BODIES IN MOTION, an exploration of sexuality, marriage, and Sri Lankan/American immigrant concerns. Her academic research includes an exploration of black masculinity in the work of horror writer Tananarive Due, and an bio-bibliography on Due published in Richard Bleiler's SUPERNATURAL FICTION WRITERS. She currently serves as a referee for FOUNDATION, THE INTERNATIONAL REVIEW OF SCIENCE FICTION, and as Director of both the SPECULATIVE LITERATURE FOUNDATION (www.speculativeliterature.org) and of DESILIT (www.desilit.org). Mohanraj has recently received an Illinois Arts Council fellowship, a Neff fellowship in English, a Steffenson-Canon fellowship in the Humanities, and the Scowcroft Prize for Fiction. She lives in Chicago and is currently writing a follow-up novel to BODIES IN MOTION, tentatively titled THE ARRANGEMENT.

Customer Reviews

2.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

30 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on January 28, 2001
Format: Paperback
Sex. Water. Jim Beam. These are things that bring me great pleasure. All three at once equal ecstasy or something close to it. So when I tumbled upon Aqua Erotica of course I had to read it in the tub with my drink in hand. Monhanraj has compiled a collection of 18 stories involving sex and water. Sometimes sex is the driving force, other times it's the water. Horror writer Poppy Z. Brite's contribution, "Nothing of Him That Doth Fade" is the highlight of the book. She creates a love story between two men set in a tragic ocean scene. This story is so rich in its character development and flow that it feels like so much more than a short story. The sexiest story in the collection is "I Want" by Mary Maxwell, which takes place on a desert road with two women and a jug of water. Another brilliant story is Cecelia Tan's version of "The Little Mermaid" in which she tells how it probably really went down, all slippery and wet. Thankfully all sexual orientations are represented in Aqua Erotica, though of course the focus is on hetro sex. Still the stories are hot, even if a few are conventional at times. I have to mention that many of the stories reminded me of the classic water-sex-death story "A Woman in the Dunes" by Anais Nin. So much so in fact that I had to go pull if off my shelf and reread it. Unfortunately, Monhanraj didn't include this in her collection, but I would highly recommend finding and reading "A Woman in the Dunes" with Aqua Erotica, they just fit. Oh, and the most important thing about this book. It's waterproof so you can get it wet with any substance you desire and just wipe it away...how cool.
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30 of 36 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 4, 2000
Format: Paperback
Finally! Finally I can read while taking a bubble bath, and not worry about getting the book wet! That alone is worth the price.
Aqua Erotica is a sexy collection of well-written stories. Recommended to anyone who likes good quality erotica. There's a wide variety of moods, sexual orientations, and styles represented in these stories, but all are unusually creative and interesting for a book of erotica. Plus, they're hot.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 27, 2000
Format: Paperback
The many good stories in this book are hot enough for this middle-aged hetero female, and for that reason I give it five stars. But the first reviewer is correct; the font size is awfully small. My glasses can't be worn in a 'steamy bath'!
Intelligent erotica worth reading. The water theme makes sense, in or out of the tub.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By girldiver on October 20, 2004
Format: Paperback
I enjoyed this anthology of erotic stories. Of course, not every story was my cup of tea which is why I only gave it four stars.

This anthology is visually exciting and sensually diverse. Contained between these pages are sexual situations from all walks of life. Therefore, if you are not sexually open-minded you might want to skip this book.

What really intrigued me was the deep emotional element with in the characters of the short stories. This certainly wasn't just an anthology describing intense sexual situations but more emotional journeys incorporated in sexual situations. I was surprised by some of the endings of the stories and the wonderful writing by various authors.

Another plus to this book was that it is water proof. So read it in the bath, pool, hot tub, or even in the rain! Heck, read it outloud during an adult game of slip-n-slide!

girldiver:)
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 2, 2000
Format: Paperback
I agree with the comments here- it's just physically hard to read and I had to move to better light and lay it down on a desk to get into it. I don't know what kind of writing would make that worth reading, but this is definitely not it. I read a couple of OK stories, then I decided to return it.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Michael J on August 24, 2000
Format: Paperback
A disappointment - not very steamy or interesting, and hard to hold and read. Most of the stories read like a writing class assignment to "Write about water, and try to make it sexy". The only story that was at all memorable was the one called "Rainy Day Man." A couple of stories were just pretentious and bad - Edrich's and Mohanraj's in particular.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 7, 2000
Format: Paperback
I'm thoroughly enjoying the stories in this collection. There's a marvelous variety of settings, styles, and voices, and the quality of the writing is excellent. Some of the pieces are quick and hot, others are longer and more reflective. The water theme has inspired an amazing array of images and emotions. From the desert to exotic islands, from the American plains to imaginary worlds, there's plenty of material here to inspire the imagination and quicken the pulse. I gave it four stars because I didn't care for the waterproof format (the book feels small and slippery, the type is too small, and I don't like the texture of the paper), but the stories are enchanting.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Tanja L. Walker on October 3, 2000
Format: Paperback
Like some other reviewers, I found the small type face to be a bother at times, though I liked the feel of the book itself. Overall, I enjoyed all the stories, but I found some of them to be rather uninspired. The premise behind "Velvet Glove," for example, seemed unoriginal (though kudos for at least making the unoriginal reasonably interesting). Others, though, were creative, exciting, and thought-provoking. I especially loved "Water Color" for its playfulness, "The Addiction" for its serious and painful take of the phenomina of cybering, and "Fisherman's Friend" for being the flat out most sexy of the bunch. Good book, just hope that magnifying glass doesn't steam up while you're reading the book in the bath!
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