Book Clubs and “Dirty” Books
Delilah, thanks so much for inviting me here in my new incarnation as Savanna Fox (also writing as Susan Fox and Susan Lyons).
Do you belong to a book club? I always wanted to, and so, years ago, I started one. I invited three friends and we each invited one more friend, so we started with eight members. We’ve gone through a few evolutions, but we’re still going strong. I love my book club! We take turns choosing books and there are NO RULES!! The books can be literary fiction, commercial fiction, non-fiction. We discuss them over dinner, and look for a restaurant that suits the theme of the book – e.g., when we read “The Paris Wife,” of course we had to eat delicious French food. (And drink French wine. Can’t forget about the wine part of the club!)
I’ve heard that many book clubs are a little, shall we say, stuffy and pretentious. If a book isn’t literary fiction – preferably a prize winner or an Oprah Book Club selection – then it’s beneath consideration. It’s really interesting to me that a lot of clubs are now choosing “Fifty Shades of Gray,” I think because of the huge buzz about the book. Seems to me, it’s not typical of what most clubs have chosen in the past.
However, that choice fits perfectly with an idea I had two or three years ago, when clubs were mostly reading literary fiction. Nothing against those books, but they aren’t always a lot of fun. And we deserve to have fun sometimes, right? That’s the idea that got me thinking about the Dirty Girls Book Club. Imagine a group of women sitting around, discussing the latest weighty, yawn-worthy tome, and one asks, “Is there a rule that says a book club can’t ever read anything fun?” Another chimes in with, “Or sexy? What’s wrong with sexy?”
That’s my premise, and of course the club in my book votes to read a sexy book, in this case “The Sexual Education of Lady Emma Whitehead.” Now comes the second part of my premise. Each time the club chooses a sexy book, one of the members has a personal sexual – and romantic! – journey that in some ways parallels that in the book.
In the first book, “The Dirty Girls Book Club” (Berkley Heat), Georgia Malone is a widow like Lady Emma. Emma was in an arranged marriage to a much older man who, to put it bluntly, sucked in bed. She has no idea that sex could be pleasurable. Georgia’s marriage was a love match and she and her husband adored each other. For her, sex was transcendent because it was a joining of bodies and souls – and yet, she never actually had an orgasm.
Lady Emma allows herself to be seduced by a suave, sexy French count. The only new man in Georgia’s life is the figurehead for her new marketing campaign – hockey star, Woody Hanrahan. He’s totally masculine and rough around the edges, and somehow she has to transform him, to make him more suave without erasing his sexy masculine edge.
Complicating matters is the fact that she has an inexplicable, unprecedented reaction to him: arousal. Though he’s certainly no sophisticated seducer like Lady Emma’s count, Georgia can’t resist the opportunity to experience the kind of physical pleasure she never believed she was capable of. And Woody is more than happy to take on her sexual education!
But of course, it’s never that simple, is it? It turns out, there’s more to Woody than meets the eye, and soon it’s not only Georgia’s body that’s turned on, it’s her heart. Do they get their happy ending? Well, I do write romance, after all!
If you’ve read my books before, you know that my mind tends to work in series, and so of course it’s my plan that the other club members will have their own sexy, romantic journeys as the club chooses more erotic selections.
I’d love to hear your thoughts about book clubs. Do you belong to one? What kinds of books do you read and how do you choose them? What type is your favorite? What do you get out of belonging to your book club? And if you don’t belong to one but would like to, why don’t you start one of your own?
I’m giving away an autographed copy of “The Dirty Girls Book Club” to someone who comments.
You can find an excerpt and purchase links on my website: http://www.susanlyons.ca I’m also on Facebook: www.facebook.com/SusanLyonsFox