After they hung up, the thought of sitting across the table from Nick Stellato in a dimly lit restaurant, chatting about erotic literature, wouldn’t leave her. The words of D.H. Lawrence flashed into her brain. “Be still when you have nothing to say; when genuine passion moves you, say what you’ve got to say, and say it hot.” Every single word out of the man’s mouth was hot enough to scald. – Words of Lust
Readers, tell the truth. The idea of reading an erotic novel makes you giggle, doesn’t it? Don’t worry, your secret is safe with me. I ask because I was the same way. When I was kid, I used to steal my Mom’s Harlequin Romance novels so I could snicker at the so-called naughty bits. Even now, whenever I hear the words “quivering loins,” I laugh (like I did after writing said words). As an adult, erotic novels weren’t my thing at all. The classics like Pride and Prejudice, Vanity Fair, and my all-time favorite, Wuthering Heights were what I preferred to read. Later, I read works by Stephen King, Octavia Butler, Haruki Murakami and James Baldwin. But erotica? No way! Who knew that Lise Horton’s novel Words of Lust would change my whole attitude?
Words of Lust begins with beautiful Wharton professor Serafina Luca (even her name is sexy) on her way to work and fuming mad. It’s a beautiful Spring day, the weather is warm, and Serafina is being harassed and catcalled by a bunch of construction workers. One in particular crosses the line from harasser to possible predator. Fortunately for Serafina, tall, dark and very handsome Nick Stellato intervenes. And although the meeting is a short one, the two leave a lasting impression on each other. For Serafina, who has no family and no time for romance, Nick is a force. Raised in a tight-knit Italian family, Nick is what you would call a “man’s man,” but without the clichés. Instead of being an overbearing sexist who thinks women are objects, Nick is an upfront kind of guy, who treats his woman right but stands up to her when she’s being a brat. Serafina, on the flip side, runs from her problems and makes assumptions about what Nick may be thinking or feeling. Like most strong, independent women, Serafina’s biggest problem is appearing weak and makes it a point of rebuffing Nick’s attempts at treating her with the love and respect she deserves.
Words of Lust, thankfully, has a story I could believe and enjoy. But that title is there for a reason. The sex scenes are HOT, so hot you’ll need a drink of water or a cold shower after reading them. Ms. Horton has a wonderful imagination and doesn’t hold back. She describes Nick’s and Serafina’s escapades with vivid detail but doesn’t go over the top. One of the elements Ms. Horton added to her novel was the use of other erotic books, like Tropic of Cancer, throughout the story. I felt like this was a great way to introduce readers to other erotic works while keeping pace with Ms. Horton’s own work. Some of the novels mentioned I had never heard of myself, but I made a beeline to the nearest bookstore so I could read them in the future.
Is Words of Lust perfect? No, but it’s a pretty good read, one that kept me engaged, even through the giggly parts (sorry, that’s just me). Some of the dialogue is a bit much to take, but thankfully there isn’t too much of that to distract from the story. I definitely recommend Words of Lust.
DISCLAIMER: This reviewer received a free copy of Words of Lust in exchange for an honest review.