Full disclosure: I don’t often read erotica. I can’t totally explain why. It may just be that I have a short attention span and a colossal stack of books. For whatever reason, I am prone to starting erotic anthologies and never finishing them.
So, I was both honoured and nervous when Xan invited me to a be a part of the Show Yourself To Me: Queer Kink Erotica blog tour. What if I didn’t get around to finishing it? What if my desires weren’t kinky enough? I had never written an erotica review before!
But, WOAH. I really had nothing to worry about. Show Yourself to Me is one consuming book to be reckoned with. It grabs you by the collar and keeps you forcibly in place. It is rough, dirty, unpredictable and unpretentious. Mostly, it’s just really real.
Xan includes characters that have complex relationships to topping. There are characters that are fat, characters with diabetes, and characters that have to consider their mobility when choosing sex scenes. Xan’s writing defies the gender binary, resists predictable tropes and challenges the reader to reconsider everything they thought they knew about queer kink. Basically, Show Yourself to Me gave me everything I’ve been looking for in erotic stories and then some.
Reading this book left me with the achey feeling of wanting to talk to the characters. While engrossed in Nervous Boy, I wanted to ask the boy where he got the courage to go to the bar that night. While reading The Test, I found myself wanting to be with the women in the bathroom stall (if they’d have me). My favourite story was The Tender Sweet Young Thing. I wanted to speak with Dax about the complexities of being a disabled top. I wanted to exchange potluck recipes with Mikey. I wanted to ask Téo what it meant to him to describe his gender as being a “tender, sweet, young thing”.
This book is a challenge in the best way. If you want to explore kink, it’s for you. If you want to read about trans and non-binary folks fucking, it’s for you. If you want to see disabled people getting off, then this book is your bag.
If I haven’t convinced you and you want to read more about Show Yourself to Me, check out other posts from the blog tour. A full listing can be found at Xan’s blog, Kink Praxis.