While it’s a reviewer’s job to be as impartial as possible, there are always going to be genres or themes that will appeal more than others. So I think it’s only fair for me to mention that a collection about hot older men had me intrigued before I opened it. However, even setting that fact aside, this was a terrific book.
C.B. Potts is an extraordinary writer, and she knocks this out of the park. As Bill pointed out in a previous review, it can be difficult for a single-author collection of erotica stories to keep a reader’s interest. Often as you get further into a book, the author’s fantasies become predictable if not repetitive. That’s not the case here as Ms. Potts frequently did a bang-up job of creating unique characters, setting vastly different moods, and finding distinct and affecting voices. Sure, the silver foxes are usually the dominant tops, but not always, and most of the pieces feature self-possessed younger men who are confident about what they want.
Some of the stories such as “Goodnight Daddy” and “Ring Tones” seem more like interludes aimed at arousing the reader as they don’t have fully developed story arcs. Others such as “R&R,” a riveting tale of an older soldier taking care of a younger, somewhat unstable, compatriot in the jungles of Viet Nam show Ms. Potts phenomenal skill at storytelling. Ms. Potts also reveals a talent for humor in a few of her pieces. The way she tells the story in “Seducing the Hunter” through the non-stop babbling of an egotistical older writer who sees himself as a notorious bad boy is pure genius. (This was my favorite story, and it’s so good.)
Not all the stories are boiling hot, but I think they’re not all meant to be. “Ringside,” about a coach’s feelings for his young champion, is more of an emotional battle against feelings of lust that don’t feel right given the circumstances. On the other hand, the primal couplings in “Rough Road” and “Rural Rentboy” were…er…quite nice, and I’ll be reading them again. For those who like a bit more romance, “Where the Buffalo Roam,” a story that pairs a college senior with an older cowboy holds a promise of love, and there’s something charming about a record company rep’s hookup with a strapping young bluegrass banjoist in “Mountain Music” that makes me think they’ll be more than friends.
I suppose if you’re not the type who enjoys intergenerational gay erotica or lusts after older men, this book might not appeal. However, I’d still urge you to give it a try. I bet you’ll be converted.