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Between the Sheets in Dudley Libraries

To date one of the high points of my career as an author of erotica was discovering my novel, The Initiation of Ms Holly, is on the list of top thirty erotic novels chosen to go onto the shelves of libraries in the UK! Holly in public libraries! To me this was a cause for celebration, a serious reason to dance in the streets. It wasn’t just that Holly was on this list, but it was the fact that there was a list at all, it was the fact that at long last erotica would be taking its rightful place in the libraries; the place where people go to read, where people go to expand their world, the true treasure troves of history. Also it was the fabulous depth and variety of the list that excited me. There were modern reads mixed in with classics and best sellers and something for everyone.

Kay Jaybee and me setting up for the talk in the library at Kingswinford

In conjunction with the libraries welcoming erotic titles onto their shelves, Stellar Libraries launched the wonderful Between the Sheets project, which is a month-long celebration of erotica, with blog posts on the BTS site and with erotica authors visiting libraries around England to talk about erotica. That was what I had the honour of doing earlier this week with Dudley Libraries up near Birmingham, up in the Black Country.

There are parts of the UK I’m familiar with. As most people know I can write about London or Surrey, and I can write about the mysteries of the Lake District, but the rich industrial heritage of the Black Country was a totally new experience for me, and one I intend to explore in more detail first chance I get. I don’t mind saying I found some serious inspiration for future stories on this trip.

The lovely Jills, Jill Wood and Jill Bright, along with the fab Hilary Riley liaised with Kay Jaybee and me to arrange the three library visit. I took

The lovely set-up at Stourbridge Library

the train up to Wolverhampton, and then a taxi to Kingswinford to find myself overnighting in a Travelodge that was a refurbished Georgian manner house. (My knowledge of architecture is non-existent, but the building was old, square-ish and lovely, and my room was not the usual Travelodge bed, shower and kettle. My room was huge with high ceilings and two windows looking out onto the countryside. I later learned that most of the people who had grown up in the area had memories of the building being a place for weddings and celebrations before it was a Travelodge. They had memories of it being a place where there were dances that all the young people attended.

Our first talk was at the Kingswinford Library, and because it was an afternoon talk, we were warned that the attendance might be small. Small, but lively, would have been a good description for this group of ten people ranging in age from early twenties to a lovely gentleman in his eighties. Kay and I kicked off the event with a very short, very soft pedalled reading each, and then talked about our journey to writing erotica. The first question when we opened up the floor for a lively discussion was; How do you define erotica? And it was a wild and exciting ride from there including a discussion of men writing and reading erotica and the usual highly charged discussion of Fifty Shades.

The Cradley Between the Sheets display

Kay and I were riding high by the time the hour was over and the discussion continued around the book display for another thirty minutes before Jill and Hillary whisked us away to the Stourbridge Library, which was a delightful warren of an old building that I wouldn’t want to have been turned loose in without a guide. There, ensconced in the lounge, we were treated to sandwiches and drinks to tide us over until after the evening event.

The librarians at Stourbridge had the place where the talk was to happen decorated with black feather boas, red velvet and roses. They served wine and nibbles to the twenty-some people who attended. Talk about a warm welcome! A good number of the people who came were members of various reading groups. The highlight for me was a lovely 89-year-old woman – a retired hairdresser, sharing tales of how she and the other young hairdressers at the salon where she worked used to sneak off to the book store next door to thumb through the copy of the Kama Sutra, then return to the salon to whisper about what they’d discovered for the rest of their shift. Sex and adventure, sex and coming of age, sex and celebration. Within that same group was a lovely mother and her 19-year-old daughter – a first year uni student studying sociology. Kay and I left the event, which ended up an hour longer than intended because of the enthusiastic response of the group, excited and encouraged to see such enthusiasm for erotica and for having it in the public libraries.

I was amazed to find that all of the libraries now check out eBooks and a lot of the people who attended our talks showed up with eReaders or tablets in hand. It seems to me that in libraries it’s was all about new and easier ways to make books and information available to everyone.

The next morning, after talking excitedly long into the night about the events of the day, Kay caught a cab back to the train station and Jill drove me to the final destination on the Dudley Library tour, Cradely.

Me with several of the lovely ladies at Cradley Library

Cradley Library was the smallest of the three libraries I went to, but also the most traditional with high wooden shelves full of books and an area separated off for talks and meetings from the main library by a wooden and wrought-iron panel. The talk was scheduled for ten-thirty in the morning, and I was pleased to be greeted by fifteen or so enthusiastic women from several reading groups, as well as some who were just library regulars. Because I was on my own, I was a bit concerned I’d not be able to keep the conversation going. I needn’t have worried. This lovely group was the most enthusiastic, most naughty-minded group of the three, and they were delightful. For me, the very best part about the visit with the Cradely readers was that a majority of them had already read at least Holly! Some had read Pets and Body Temperature as well, and though Kay wasn’t able to attend, a good few had also read Kay’s Perfect Submissive and some of her short stories from The Collector. It was wonderful to engage in conversation with people who had read or were reading seriously beyond 50SoG and were so anxious to know more. Another hour-long talk extended to two hours with suggestions of who should play Anderson and Tino and Edward in the movie versions of my novels, and with questions of what to read next and what they could expect in certain books.

As I rode the crowded train back home playing the exciting events of my two days visiting the Dudley libraries over and over in my mind, one thought came through loud and clear. Though not all of the people we spoke to had read even 50 Shades, and some weren’t sure how they felt about erotica, there was an open interest, an enthusiasm and a hunger to understand what all the post 50SoG excitement was all about, and IF there was really any substance behind the hype. That was what people wanted to know. That’s what libraries are about, to me. That’s what libraries have ALWAYS been about. Libraries offer a place to approach the world of knowledge and the unknown with an open mind. Libraries offer a safe place to understand, to learn, to experience vicariously – even things that frighten us a bit, things of which we’re unsure. And libraries offer this wonderful gift to everyone! That’s a real treasure, a treasure on which we can’t put a price.

 

 

November Heats Up!

The Initiation of Ms Holly a Top Titillater!

November’s off to an exciting start with lots going on. The news of the day is that The Initiation of Ms Holly is number five on the Stellar Libraries’ list of all time titillating novels! Waking up to that good news, published in the Mail Online’s Femail site definitely made my morning.

For those of you who don’t, libraries are turning up the heat this autumn. With the explosion in popularity of erotic novels this year libraries all over the UK are launching a month-long celebration of erotic literature.

From next Friday, the Between the Sheets festival will bring 30 of the top titillating titles to 33 libraries across the country. Watch out libraries, The Initiation is on, and with Holly sharing the shelves with some of my very favourite authors, Justine Elyot, Portia Da Costa and Madeline Moore, and others, you can expect some serious sizzle in the stacks.

Riding the Ether on Tour:

Also in the news, you may not have heard there’s a real heatwave in the Lake District this autumn, as I unleash Riding the Ether, the second novel of my paranormal erotic Lakeland Heatwave Series, now available in eBook and print. I’m very excited that I’ll be touring some truly fabulous blogs with Riding the Ether, starting Monday the 12th. Check out the links and dates below and join the fun and scary, sexy paranormal excitement.

Riding the Ether Blog Tour:

12th Nov: Catriana’s Muse: http://catrianasmuse.blogspot.com/

13th Nov: Nephylim: Out of the Box Fiction: http://nephylim-author.blogspot.co.uk/

14th Nov: Words of Wisdom from the Scarf Princess: http://wowfromthescarfprincess.blogspot.com/

15th Nov: The Tardis Scribbles: http://thetardisscribbles.blogspot.com/

16th Nov: Carly Fall: Where Fantasy Meets Romance: http://www.carlyfall.com

Blurb for Riding the Ether:

Cassandra Larkin keeps her ravenous and dangerous sexual appetite secret until she seduces Anderson in the mysterious void of the Ether.  Anderson is the sexy, insatiable ghost who can give her exactly what she needs.

But sex is dangerous in a place like the Ether…

When the treacherous demon, Deacon, discovers the truth about the origin of Cassandra’s powerful lust, he plots to use her sex magic for revenge on Tara Stone and the Elemental Coven, who practice their own brand of sex magic.

Cassandra must embrace the lust and sexuality she fears and learn to use its power. Will she stand with Anderson, Tara, and the Elemental Coven against Deacon’s wrath or suffer the loss of friendship, magic and love?

A little Excerpt to heat up those crisp autumnal nights …

(Warning: not for the faint of heart)

And though Anderson did not remember casting the special enfleshment spell, the one he always cast for himself in the Ether, he was fully in the flesh, albeit flesh that only had substance in the Ether. He was completely naked, and fully, nay, outrageously aroused. The pressure in his groin was both agonizing and exquisite. He reached for his manhood, knowing full well he was in need of wit that he did not possess when his lust was so great. But before he could stroke himself to release, a voice spoke out from the Void. ‘That belongs to me.’

He was not startled that the woman appeared out of nowhere. After all this was the Ether, but he was very startled, if most pleasantly so, that she was as naked as he, and it was no hardship for him to look upon her. Before he could utter even a cry of surprise, she knelt next to him, slapped his hand away and took his member into her mouth.

‘My dear woman,’ he gasped as her tongue snaked up the underside of his manhood. ‘I do not believe we know each other.’

She stopped pleasuring only long enough to reply. ‘We will very soon.’ Then she returned her efforts to his great need.

‘I fear this shall end quickly if you do not stop what you are doing.’ He tried, though only half-heartedly, to push her away. After all what manner of man saw to his own release before the pleasure of his lover?

‘I know you.’ As she spoke, she continued to stimulate him with her hand. ‘It may be over quickly this time, but then,’ she lifted her head enough to brush a quick kiss against his lips, enough for him to catch the tiniest glimpse of dark cinnamon eyes. ‘When it’s over we’ll begin again, and then,’ she gave him a squeeze. ‘Then I’m sure I’ll be well compensated.’

She spoke no more, but took the length of him deep into her throat and tightened her grip until there was nothing for it. He shuddered the weightiness of his release into her throat, and she drank it back like fine brandy. And when she had drained him as surely as if he had been the glass containing her drink of choice, she slipped up next to him, her tight roseate nipples brushing against his ribs. And when she kissed him, he tasted himself on her lovely tongue. This time she kissed him with all of her mouth, nay, with all of her body if that were possible, and he felt lust already returning to his loins.

When she pulled away, he spoke in one breathless sentence, fearful that if he did not find his voice immediately, the lady’s own greed for the pleasures of the flesh might make him forget that he even possessed the power of speech, might make him forget why his voice would even be of importance. ‘My dear woman, might I at least enquire who it is that pleasures me so well and in such unusual circumstances?’

Check back for more November Heat coming soon!

 

 

 

 

Another good eRead!

On a road trip across America, Liz Martin’s car breaks down in the middle of nowhere South Dakota, and the ride a Good Samaritan lorry driver offers her is not exactly the one she expected. Don’t miss my story, ACCIDENTAL HITCHHIKER, now available in Xcite eBooks anthology, Cocktales, Between The Sheets

 
© 2017 K D Grace
The Romance Reviews

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