SistaGirl by Anondra “Kat” Williams

Posted on

sistagirlPublisher/Date:  Black Ink, July 2013
Genre(s):  Romance, Short Story, Poetry
Pages:  172
Website:  http://www.anondrawilliams.com

Rating: ★★★¾☆ 

A Southern woman is a delicacy: defined as a delicious, rare, or highly prized item of food; pleasing subtlety in something such as taste, smell, or color; or the quality of being easily damaged or broken.

All these qualities are revealed reading SISTAGIRL from Anondra “Kat” Williams, also author of black girl love. Her newest collection of stories and poems picks up where black girl love left off, but adds an extra pinch of down-home charm. For a girl like Williams, born and bred in Mississippi, this volume of Southern sensibilities is her bread-and-butter, her calling card. She knows the South, and she definitely knows women.

I saw it when I read the title story, about loving your sista no matter whom she loves, and in “Saturday Mornings,” recalling the memories of Mama and her friends gossiping and commiserating around the table over cups of coffee, at a time when children were to hush when grown folks are talking. It’s also clear in “Southern Living,” narrated by a Northerner loving a “Mississippi thick girl” with hot grits ready every Sunday.

One of the biggest themes in SistaGirl is growth, as a woman and in relationships, a trip back to the girl you used to be, and the woman you are now. Tales such as “Years” recount the affair between a woman in love and a woman who doesn’t want to be caught, realizing one can come back home. In “Firsts” and “15,” the evolution of love is shown, the former being first loves, and the latter growing older together. I reveled in the coziness of the poem, “morning,” reminding me with talks in the arms of your soulmate.

Like a side of buttered cornbread next to your collard greens, the drama finagles its way to the plate in SistaGirl, as well. Stories of crazy love (“Time”), domestic abuse (“Roses”), and dating women with husbands (“How You Get’em”) round out this set. And lest you worry, there’s some “good joog” in there also, with a stimulating game of “Tic-tac-toe” that I need to, ahem, play one of these nights.

Her bonuses, “Top 10 Rules for Being a Lesbian” and “The 11 Lesbians You Will Meet in Your Lifetime”, are humourously spot-on. Williams also includes a except from her upcoming fall 2014 novel, Pat Greene, which I’m looking forward to.

Williams’ SistaGirl exposes the hearts of real women. I found her stories to be exceedingly true in sentiment, but a little slack on the editing. A couple of stories ended abruptly that I wanted to see continue, or at least be fleshed out further. That aside, SistaGirl is all the women in your life, and may be you. And the love of good woman is hard to beat.

Reviewed August 2013

Read the Catching Up With… Interview with Anondra “Kat Williams

About Anondra “Kat” Williams

Anondra “Kat” Williams is writer, poet, radio host and all around lover of words. Her first foray into writing was black girl love released in 2011 and her second book SistaGirl released August 2013. Both are a collection of short stories and poetry, detailing everyday love and life between women who love women.

Kat’s work is currently featured in the anthologies Life, Love & Lust 1 & 2 a collection of short stories & Her Voice a collection of poetry. She will also be in the soon to be released Geechee to Gumbo: Black Southern Womanloving Culture & Politics and G.R.I.T.S: Girls Raised In The South – An Anthology on Southern Queer Womyns’ Voices and Their Allies.

In 2009 she started Shades Retreat: Personal, You. Shades Retreat is a empowerment, growth and change retreat for queer women of color. Shades Retreat occurs once a year during the third week of April.


Forever Tangled: A collection of poems and stories from the heart and between the thighs (Volume 1) by Monique ‘Being True’ Thomas

Posted on

forevertangledPublisher/Date:  CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, Nov. 2012
Genre(s):  Romance, Erotica, Poetry, Short Story
Pages:  112
Website:  http://authormoniquebeingtruethonas.wordpress.com

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

The Plot:  In the first volume of FOREVER TANGLED: A COLLECTION OF POEMS AND STORIES FROM THE HEART AND BETWEEN THE THIGHS, Monique ‘Being True’ Thomas invites you “to the playground of love and seduction” to “enjoy your time playing on the jungle gym” of her thoughts. Her erotic material – such as “Watched” and “Wet” –  will surely get your heart rate (and other things) up; at the same time, Thomas brings love to the table, like in “All I Wanted to Do” and “Reflection” (my personal favorite). Poetry also rounds out this first installment.

The Good:  Thomas’ stories have a familiar feel, if you’ve remember or read some of her other works featured on Kuma2.net and in the Life, Love, Lust series by Lesbian Memoirs. The love scenes are extremely sensuous, and her poetry is expressive.

The Not-So-Good:  A couple of the stories have a been-there-done-that quality.

The Bottom Line: Forever Tangled is a small read with big of heart.

Reviewed April 2013


Once and Future Lovers by Sheree L. Greer (Dec. 2012 Pick of the Month)

Posted on

onceandfuturelovers  potmlogo

 

 

 

Publisher/Date:  CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, June 2012
Genre(s):  Romance, Short Story
Pages:  118
Website:  http://www.shereelgreer.com

Rating: ★★★★★ 

Love.

The four letter word conjures so many images and thoughts and emotions that can be hard to express.

Sheree L. Greer captures the sentiments beautifully in her short story collection, ONCE AND FUTURE LOVERS. Her book highlights the simplest and most complicated forms of affection from the romantic to the familial, to the straight to same-sex varieties.

And it all flows like butter.

Once begins with a tender story, “I Do All My Own Stunts,” as a woman lives the metaphor of “getting back on the bike” to find love again. To her, the feeling of flying when in love is worth the tumble and pain one may have to endure – and she can’t wait to experience it again.

“The Beginning of Something” is truly an old-fashioned love story. Arthur Turner meets a seemingly virtuous woman named Christine. She’s stunning, but at 26, has never been married and doesn’t want to leave home. Arthur, having lived a tough life, desires to see the world and intriguingly finds this same quality in someone else – Iris, Christine’s sister.

It all comes full circle in “Dreaming Woman,” a heartwarmer about Zaire and her two loves: Daryan, her best friend, unaware of Zaire’s passion for her; and her grandmother, Mama Iris, who Zaire lovingly takes care of and enjoys spending time with. Two different kinds of love, but the admiration Zaire has for Mama Iris bolsters her courage to declare her love for Daryan and allow her into her world.

Once and Future Lovers can be considered an exceptional debut novel. The narration of each story exudes genuine human interactions that are relatable to any sexuality, race or gender. Love can’t be defined by those things, and Greer presents this knowledge in a splendid way.

Reviewed December 2012


Fantasies, Sex, Lies, & Love… Chronicles of the Heart and Mind by Harmonie Reigns

Posted on

fantasiessexliesandlovePublisher/Date:  CreateSpace, Feb. 2012
Genre(s):  Romance, Erotica, Poetry, Short Story
Pages:  212
Website:  http://harmoniereigns.wix.com/harmonie#!info

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

The Plot: In most cases, relationships usually include FANTASIES, SEX, LIES & LOVE…CHRONICLES OF THE HEART AND MIND in some fashion. That’s what Harmonie Reigns asserts in her collection of dramatic short stories and corresponding poems. Love can be reunited in (“The Encounter”) or reassuring (“In the Blink of an Eye”) or life-changing (“The Librarian”). On the other hand, it can also be deceitful (“The Office”) or simply about the panties (“The Truck Stop”). With Reigns, you never know what you’re gonna get.

The Good: Reigns delves into hearty plots with each tale. She draws you into the characters, allowing you to care about the two (or sometimes three) people in the relationship that matter the most. And the sex found between the pages is scorching.

The Bad: Although the stories were hot, the excessive grammatical errors were not. It did slow me down at times. Also, some of her poems I couldn’t quite get into.

The Bottom Line: Read Fantasies for the love and the lust, and you won’t be disappointed.

Reviewed August 2012

Fantasies, Sex, Lies, & Love… Chronicles of the Heart and Mind by Harmonie Reigns
CreateSpace, Feb. 2012
212 pages
Contemporary Romance/Erotica/Poetry/Short Story
http://harmoniereigns.wix.com/harmonie#!infoRating: 3 out of 5

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

The Plot: In most cases, relationships usually include FANTASIES, SEX, LIES & LOVE…CHRONICLES OF THE HEART AND MIND in some fashion. That’s what Harmonie Reigns asserts in her collection of dramatic short stories and corresponding poems. Love can be reunited in (“The Encounter”) or reassuring (“In the Blink of an Eye”) or life-changing (“The Librarian”). On the other hand, it can also be deceitful (“The Office”) or simply about the panties (“The Truck Stop”). With Reigns, you never know what you’re gonna get.

The Good: Reigns delves into hearty plots with each tale. She draws you into the characters, allowing you to care about the two (or sometimes three) people in the relationship that matter the most. And the sex found between the pages is scorching.

The Bad: Although the stories were hot, the excessive grammatical errors were not. It did slow me down at times. Also, some of her poems I couldn’t quite get into.

The Bottom Line: Read Fantasies for the love and the lust, and you won’t be disappointed.

Reviewed August 2012


Erotic Tones…Sensual Moans: A Mixture of Sensual Erotic Poetry & Short Stories by Stacey M. Rice

Posted on

erotictonesPublisher/Date:  Rycemoore Horizons, Dec. 2011
Genre:  Erotica
Pages:  120
Website:  http://www.rycemoorehorizons.weebly.com

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

The Plot: Twenty-three short stories and poems convey the erotic overtures between women in EROTIC TONES…SENSUAL MOANS. Author Stacey M. Rice captures the raw and sweet with tales like “Oooh Boi,” a stud-4-stud treat and “Thrill of the Chase,” where a bookstore patron doesn’t accept no when it comes to the store owner.

The Good: Rice definitely mixes it up. The stories are fun, and the poetry is passionate. The depth of the book heightens as you read.

The Not-So-Good: While the tales were heat-inducing, there were a couple of moments when the characters would head-hop, and you don’t know who’s putting it on whom. And I would have liked a little more background on some of the characters, as well.

The Bottom Line: Rice spares no time and delves straight to the point in Erotic Tones. You will be satisfied.

Reviewed June 2012


Letting Go…Almost A Trilogy of Alternative Short Stories by Monica Cooper

Posted on

lettinggoalmostPublisher/Date KumaSon Consultant, June 2011
Genre(s):  Romance, Short Story
Pages:  392
Website:  http://www.kumason.com

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

What’s the use of LETTING GO…ALMOST?

To discover a love yet experienced based on the touching book by Monica Cooper.

Her tome features 3 novellas centered on couples who could find love if only they succumbed to its power. Pasts may hinder you, imaginary barriers can be overcome, and the right one could be right in your face, but you have to be able to let go and let love.

The first tale surrounds Dylan, an abused woman stranded by her Lexus in a small town while trying to escape. She’s taken in by Ms. Mae, a caring elder with a granddaughter, Tori, who can fix Dylan’s car in her shop. Dylan and Tori don’t hit it off, to say the least, but through Ms. Mae, they learn each other’s pasts aren’t that different. Things get more complicated when Tori and Dylan find out they share a common link.

Vampires and mortals are to oil and water, yet in Cooper’s second story, they yield pleasurable bedmates – if only Martel could let go of standing traditions that forbid the creatures from mingling with humans. Martel knows Sanai is literally worth fighting for, but dark forces could see to it that the two never see the light of day.

The last tale in Letting Go involves Asilia, in a relationship with a man when she meets Kai. The attraction is undeniable and mutual, but it leaves both ladies confused: for Asilia, whether it’s worth leaving her boyfriend; for Kai, how long can she wait for something that isn’t hers and isn’t promised. As it happens often in life, fate makes the decision for them.

In short, Cooper’s words in Letting Go…Almost flow like honey, delightfully poignant, sentiments felt.

Reviewed June 2012


black girl love by Anondra “Kat” Williams

Posted on

blackgirllovePublisher/Date:  CreateSpace, Mar. 2011
Genre(s):  Romance, Erotica, Short Story
Pages: 202
Website:  http://www.anondrawilliams.com

Rating: ★★★★★ 

Twenty-five stories, 25 beautiful sentiments about black women and love.

That statement encapsulates Anondra “Kat” Williams’ black girl love, a scenic excursion of the black lesbian experience, from love to hate, from sex to love.

There are several highlights of black girl love. The best are ones that allow you to lose yourself in them. Like “locs,” where a lover waits patiently to connect with her harried wife through loving hair maintenance. “lunch” finds two old friends catching up and right back to the mutual attraction that always lingers as they dine, while “buddies” has two friends-with-benefits partakers silently falling for each other.

Other highlights of black girl love are the ones rooted in serious emotions. A partner respects her wife’s choice to live in “decisions,” and “trying” is a masterpiece at showcasing a woman’s many attempts to win her girlfriend back.

The lion’s share of black girl love, though, is about desire. That resonates in most of Williams’ tales, especially with the stories “breakfast”, “lunch” and “dinner,” lovers feasting on each other via words that ring true.

Williams thoughtfully douses black girl love with tenderness, humor, and real-life situations that make it hard to put down. It’s a project she spent three year working on, and it shows in the fluidity of the book. In reading, you will picture yourself as one (or more) of Williams’ characters, laugh, or loudly utter “ooh chile” at something clever.

Now those are the signs of a good book.

Reviewed January 2012


This Is How We Do It by D. Alexandria

Posted on

thishowwedoit-212x300Publisher/Date:  RedThorn Art, June 2010
Genre(s):  Erotica, Short Story
Pages:  170
Website:  http://www.dalexandria.com

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Women are blessed with sexual prowess to varying degrees, from the most vanilla to a rainbow swirl, and THIS IS HOW WE DO IT captures all those kinky flavors, a veritable taste of what lesbian sex has to offer.

D. Alexandria, a former author at kuma2.net and writer for several anthologies including the Best Lesbian Erotica and Ultimate Lesbian Erotica series, at last boasts her own collection of freaky fiction. As her synopsis points out, “We need more than teasing kisses, tender caresses, whipped cream or wisps of lace.”

Simply put, this is a strictly sexual thang.

This is How We Do Itis broken up into three interludes, one rawer than the next. It begins with “When She’s Mad,” where after a fight, a couple airs all their “dirty laundry” at a public rest stop. In “The Jewel of Storyville,” a famed whore in 1899 New Orleans is astonished when her baby-faced John pulls a deception that pleases them both.

The next section of the book is all about the thrill of getting busy, as evidenced in “Tag,” a version of hide and seek nothing like the version you played growing up. And a lot of the things you thought “Butches Don’t” do are disproved between two masculine bruhs just chillin for the afternoon.

The final interlude saves the pain for last. A student is taken to task in lieu of studying in “Pain Slut,” while a woman relives schoolgirl torture in “Penance.” The best of the bunch is “Flipping the Script,” a passionate role-playing tale.

This is How We Do It showcases D. Alexandria’s proficiency in erotica writing that’s grounded in real scenarios and playfulness. The moral of This Is How We Do It is that roles and hang-ups don’t matter – as long as you’re handling yours.

Reviewed February 2011


Missionary No More: Purple Panties II edited by Zane

Posted on

purplepanties2Publisher/Date:  Strebor Books, Jan. 2009
Genre(s):  Erotica, Short Story, Anthology
Pages:  256
Website:  http://www.eroticanoir.com

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

The second coming of Zane’s lesbian erotica collection, MISSIONARY NO MORE: PURPLE PANTIES II, proves it’s never as good as the first time.

Stories ranging from sex club escapades and naughty housewives get you going, but don’t take you too far over the edge. Still there are some tales that manage to titillate your senses and stand out from the rest.

“The Namar’s Nectar” is one in particular, a novella about two women wondering what gifts lie within the queen to make the men of their village line up in droves; the pair yearn to experience the secret for themselves. Then in “Caged,” an inmate recounts the crime of passion that landed her in prison while discovering a new passion behind bars.

Purple Panties II also has its share of bad girls – some you might not see coming. “It’s All the Same” sees a pampered princess getting everything she wants from her stud prince, while “Bad Behavior” sees a bridesmaid making good use of her hideous dress…on the floor.

Other stories involve threesomes of both the all-women variety, and, surprisingly, the two-woman-one-man type. And there’s a tale involving a fetish one might not expect.

As usual, the best story is saved for last with Zane’s “The Flipper,” where a woman with an unusual occupation gets herself stuck between two women. If they only knew what she does for a living…

Overall, Purple Panties II is tasty in some parts, a little bland in others. It’s doesn’t stray too far from the mold of the original book, so if you liked the first pair of Panties, you’ll like this installment. It gets the job done, so to speak, and that’s never a bad thing.

Reviewed February 2009


You Think You Know by Fina (Dec. 2008 Pick of the Month)

Posted on

youthinkyouknowPublisher/Date:  Seven Stages Publishing House, June 2008
Genre(s):  Erotica, Short Story
Pages:  132
Website:  http://www.finasflow.com

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

What you don’t know about YOU THINK YOU KNOW, the debut novel from author Fina, is that you can’t possibly know just how good it is to read a work of black lesbian fiction as passionate, honest and explosive as these 15 tales of love between women.

Each story electrifies with carnal desires and insatiable lust, while caressing the heart in sincere reflections. Nothing has ever felt this easy when it comes to describing  our lives and loves.

Take for example, the confusion expressed in “The Lesbian Circle of Destruction,” which revolves around the scandalous relationships we have as women-loving  women. Monogamy is a dirty word with these women, whose almost incestuous ties can be found in any small lesbian community. For instance, your best friend is sleeping with your ex, while you’re still pining away over your first love, who’s now your best friend. Talk about complicated.

What you see is what you get in “She Finally Let Me Have a Femme All to Myself.” Who can ignore a story that begins with, “Have you ever just wanted to eat some pussy?” It gets more uninhibited from there, in a way that grabs your attention and won’t let go.

Balanced with the hardcore fantasies of You Think You Know are thoughtful works about love, expressed in “You,” pinpointing the exact moment a woman falls in love, and “Family Night,” a piece portraying the life of lesbian parents finding time for each other when the kids aren’t around.

Fina points out that you’ll wonder what happened to “good old fashioned wholesome ladies,” and it’s true when you read “An Eye for an Eye,” wherein a stud finds herself caught between a wife and a mistress. You may think you know how the story ends, but trust me, you can’t envision this ending.

The assorted tales of You Think You Know are riveting, able to draw you with their simple, sinful sentiments. Grammatical errors aside, simply put: Fina can tell a story. What she’s also able to do is depict our relationships for what they are – both beautiful and ugly at times.

And that’s what you should know about You Think You Know.

Reviewed December 2008


Iridescence: Sensuous Shades of Lesbian Erotica by Jolie du Pre (Editor)

Posted on

iridescencePublisher/Date:  Alyson Books, June 2007
Genre(s):  Erotica, Short Story
Pages:  240
Website:  http://www.joliedupre.com

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Iridescence can be defined as “a play of lustrous, changing colors.” In Jolie du Pre’s own IRIDESCENCE: SENSUOUS SHADES OF LESBIAN EROTICA, she definitely plays with the lines of color with a mélange of ethnic women seeking pleasure.

A writer featured in several erotica anthologies, du Pre has compiled a collection of stories featuring females of African American, Caucasian, Asian, Latina and Indian descent in varying sexual rendezvous and compromising situations. Every tale has its own flair, and the rainbow of races shown in the pages of Iridescence present a multicolored hue not often seen in lesbian literature. That’s what makes Iridescence all the more special.

The book begins with Fiona Zedde’s “Night Music,” a melodious romance budding between Rhiannon, a shy orchestra lover, and Zoya, a dreadlocked violin player. They meet after Zoya’s concert at the symphony hall, realizing their attraction could create a harmony all its own. “Lick ‘Er License” offers a glimpse into a Latina nightclub,  where a bartender serves drinks with a passion for her clients, and ends up finding her own love in the club.

While romance is on display in Iridescence, the same can be said for clothes-ripping, steamy encounters, such as the tantalizing “Shopping in New York,” where a boring wait for a friend in a dressing room turns into a naughty scene for a Latina butch; she’ll never look at miniskirts in the same way. In “The Portrait,” an artist asks a  beautiful Asian woman to be her model in an attempt to capture the rich colors of her luminous skin, and finds herself desiring more than what’s on her easel.

Iridescence, in its fervor to bring something different to the table, also attempts to break down stereotypes. For example, a patron desires both the curry chicken and the exotic waitress at her favorite Indian restaurant. While Sasha is turned on by the authentic dress of the hostess, she gets her own surprise when she sees the woman sans sari and bindi – and realizes her Indian fantasy is nothing compared to the real woman behind the costume. Sasha learns is perception isn’t everything.

The final act, written by du Pre, is simply titled “Monisha,” a tale involving two Black women who meet at a coffee shop. How typical, until Monisha invites the patron into her world, finding passion like she’s never known. Too bad she has other obligations.

Iridescence is vibrant, giving the reader so many shades of love that each one stands out. We get to know more about different cultures, from the way they interact to  how they live. What makes the book so cohesive is that desire knows no race, but looks into the heart of the woman. That’s what du Pre conveys in Iridescence, and it  shows in every connection and every infatuation.

It’s time we had a book like this.

Reviewed December 2008


Kiss! Kiss! Keep It Wet! by Ms. Erotica

Posted on

Publisher/Date:  Xlibris Corporation, Nov. 2006kisskiss
Genre(s):  Erotica, Short Story
Pages:  68

Rating: ★★★½☆ 

These women are doing a lot more than kissing in author Ms. Erotica’s KISS! KISS! KEEP IT WET!

This collection of illicit encounters involves ladies and studs droppin’ like it’s hot and tastin’ it like it’s sweet. The nice-naughty storytelling from Ms. Erotica (aka Anita Brown) is sure to make you spend some time with your lover or with yourself, if you follow my drift. All – and I mean all – of the pieces from Kiss go straight for the gusto and don’t hold anything back.

Especially when you read these saucy tales of temptation. The club seems to be a popular spot to get your freak on, at least in Kiss. It has a woman in the backseat in “I’m Going Out,” and a newbie getting turned out in “Missing in My Life.” T-Pain has nothing on the women in “I’m Love With a Stripper,” the story that has two friends spending all their money on dancers more erotic than exotic.

The book also has others finding passion in the most ironic of places. Like “The Desk,” where the term “head nigga in charge” takes on a whole new meaning in the  office. Then on “The Train Ride,” a company trip allows two employees to work more a lot more closely than they would have ever imagined.

Even with all the licking and sucking going, Kiss does have its tender moments. “Our Anniversary” has a woman giving her lover of four years a present she’s always desired, and makes her fantasies come true. And after a long day of work, all Lexi wants to do is have “A Relaxing Night at Home” – until she realizes her brother has invited friends over to her apartment, but it may be an even better night after she meets one of his beautiful homegirls.

Ms. Erotica knows how to turn you on with the power of her pen. She’s been writing erotica for two years now, and already has the no-holds-barred style of Zane, one of  her favorite authors. What does turn you off are the excessive grammatical errors throughout the book. Once she has that under control, she could become the next  lesbian Zane. It’s only a matter of time.

Because her storytelling is on point – and off the chain.

Reviewed December 2008


Bare Necessities: Sensuous Tales of Passion by Hazel Mills

Posted on

barenecessitiesPublisher/Date:  Xpress Yourself Publishing, LLC , Feb. 2008
Genre(s):  Erotica, Short Story, Bisexual
Pages:  112
Website:  http://www.hazelmillsstories.com

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

When passions are laid bare, it can be sensual, exciting and worth every minute.

The same can be said about BARE NECESSITIES: SENSUOUS TALES OF PASSION, the collection of naughty gems and poems written by Hazel Mills. Containing 11 stories of sexual candor, Bare Necessities combines a little bit of romance and a little bit of sin to create a short-but-sweet romp worth reading.

Bare Necessities begins with “A Lover is Born,” where Laila is introduced to Gabe at her book club meeting and is instantly entranced. She wants to get to know Gabe better, and what better way than to host the next gathering at her place. The bash is a success in more ways than one, as the two ladies manage to get their own party started.

In “Surrender,” a workaholic husband and wife put the spice back into their marriage by attending a couple’s retreat. Yet, this isn’t just a boring therapy session; it’s an experience that allows them to seek unknown pleasures, and from it the married lovers learn that it’s okay to let go and explore their freaky sides.

Then in the most poignant tale of Bare Necessities, “Sweet Home Alabama,” a Philadelphia transplant returns for her family reunion in Sweet Home, a small town with even smaller dreams. Despite escaping, Tracy has only one regret after leaving her hometown: abandoning her childhood sweetheart, Monica. She vows to find her – and finally be with the woman she never stopped loving.

There more treasures in Bare Necessities, and Mills doesn’t hesitate to give them to you. Her stories are funny, warm, and hot in just the right places. Even though the book has a mere hundred or so pages, it doesn’t fail to get you fired up. I look forward to reading more from Mills – hopefully in a book with a much higher page count.

Reviewed August 2008


Visions of a Cryptic Mystery: Volume One by Eternity Philops (June 2008 Pick of the Month)

Posted on

visionsofacrypticmysterypotmlogoPublisher/Date:  Black Tygre Publications, Apr. 2008
Genre(s):  Poetry, Short-Story
Pages:  126
Website:  http://www.eternity-philops.com

Rating: ★★★★★ 

A sweet feeling washes over you when reading VISIONS OF A CRYPTIC MYSTERY: VOLUME ONE, a vibe of spiritual and sexual serenity.

Author Eternity Philops’ Visions is a beautiful view from which readers won’t be able to tear their eyes away. Excellent in its form, approach and creativity, Visions captures your senses. Both poetry and prose encompass this brilliant array of work that speaks to black lesbians everywhere. Its unique charm lies in Philops’ poems that clinch the mind with a metaphysical theme and her short stories that engage the heart.

Visions is categorized by three fragments titled Love, Loss and Life. The first, Love, captures the emotion and physical aspects of affection, with stories concerning unrequited love in “Almost First Kiss” and love beyond time in “Black Lace.” The poems in this section compliment these stories with an air of “Cosmic Intimacy.”

“Come soar with me
Be my love
We will stroll across a plateau of clouds,
Bathed in iridescent rays of sunlight
We shall picnic on the billowed hills of heaven,
As the soft rustle of God’s whispers blows gently
in our ears.”

The next section deals with the facet of Loss, as evidenced by the stories “Other Side of the Moon,” a tale of two women in love who never quite become one, and in “A Luncheon Scorned,” where a woman finally gives a former lover her just desserts. In this section, the poems underscore the feeling losing the most important thing in your life, as evidenced in “A Slight Wind.”

“Her whispered nothings are sweet
their smog a pollution
of my atmosphere
I’ve inhaled to deeply
the toxins of her tongue
Lungs full of a lover’s lies
I asphyxiate
for lack of pure clean truth”

In the final part of Visions, Philops writes about Life in its candor. In “Bait and Switch,” a con-woman finally meets her match and a workaholic learns there’s more to life than business in “An Affirmative Action.” The remainder of her poems in this section vary in themes from creation to dreams.

“Can I be your poet?
Can I write your journey
upon the eclipse of your soul
along the shadow of your benighted thoughts”

Philops’ Visions is a delight to read. It swiftly grabs you from page one, enveloping the reader in colorful and sensuous expressions that you won’t find in most Black lesbian novels. The poems are concise, inspired works of art that Philops has clearly mastered. The prose is mired in its every-woman appeal, making the reader both laugh and long for love. Philops, who wrote the first volume of over an extensive period and has plans for more, compares writing to opening the soul’s window, inviting you to see the view.

From reading Visions, the sight is quite exquisite.

Reviewed June 2008


Purple Panties: An Eroticanoir.com Anthology edited by Zane

Posted on

purplepantiesPublisher/Date:  Strebor Books, May 2008
Genre(s):  Erotica, Short Story
Pages:  320
Website:  http://www.eroticanoir.com

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Doesn’t matter what the color, all undergarments come off just as easily in PURPLE PANTIES, the newest book from renowned erotica writer Zane, author of best-selling books Addicted and Chocolate Flava. This time, she focuses her view strictly on the ladies in this anthology of 26 lesbian tales of passion.

As Zane says in her introduction, “You might need a few drinks when you read this book, definitely a sex toy or lover, but you are in for one hell of a ride.” Truer words were never written as you peruse story after story varying from tender romance to rip-your-bra-off sex. Not one author fails to ignite a spark with each page.

Take for instance Laurinda D. Brown’s “It’s All or Nothing,” which finds housewife Meena realizing she gave up too much for her husband, and it took another woman’s kiss to cut the apron strings. Then a pleasure-seeking vacationer looks for “Island Goddess” at a paradise resort, and toy-shopping takes on a whole new meaning at with an adult store proprietor taking advantage of her own products in “Miss Julidene’s Sexy Items.”

One of the highlights of Purple Panties is women discovering the delights of the female sex for the first time. This is portrayed in stories such as “The Finest Man,” wherein a feminine security guard is tantalized by the masculine individual at her workplace, even after realizing he’s really a she. Syreeta then ponders what her attraction to the stud says about herself, because she’s ready to give it up – no matter what the gender.

As expected, Purple Panties has the no-holds barred escapades that blaze with undeniable chemistry. That’s provided courtesy of “The Purple Panty Revue,” as Jay meets the faceless neighbor that’s haunted her fantasies for the past few weeks; the surprise is where they finally encounter one another – and what happens next.

Zane’s own novella is saved for last with “In My Mind,” a tale of a nude art model who poses at local university. One particular co-ed catches Emile’s eye, and she wishes to depict her feelings with the shy undergraduate – if only she could break the student’s aloof exterior.

Purple Panties proves more than provocative, worthy of getting your underwear damp. The only objection is that some stories seem to stop abruptly, and I was left wanting more. Yet I love the fact Zane is bringing lesbian literature to a mainstream black audience; in fact, she’s planning to publish a sequel to Panties early next year.

And I, for one, will be happily waiting – because Zane always knows how to put it down.

Reviewed June 2008