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Carnal Machines: Steampunk Erotica by D.L.…

Carnal Machines: Steampunk Erotica

by D.L. King (Editor)

Other authors: Janine Ashbless (Contributor), Kathleen Bradean (Contributor), Delilah Devlin (Contributor), Kannan Feng (Contributor), D.L. King (Contributor)9 more, Jay Lawrence (Contributor), Renee Michaels (Contributor), Teresa Noelle Roberts (Contributor), Lisabet Sarai (Contributor), Elizabeth Schechter (Contributor), Tracey Shellito (Contributor), Elias St. James (Contributor), Essemoh Teepee (Contributor), Poe Von Page (Contributor)

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501345,347 (3.89)1
  1. 00
    The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters by Gordon Dahlquist (LordBangholm)
    LordBangholm: One of the finest pieces of Steampunk writing, with a strong erotic undercurrent!

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Steampunk is a subgenre that pastiches and parodies the SF of the Victorian and Edwardian era, Verne, Wells, Doyle and the rest. The term was coined as a reaction to Cyberpunk, the hi-tech computer-geek subgenre that emerged in the late 80's in response to the development of the internet. In contrast, Steampunk is all about steam engines and Zeppelins; corsetry and top hats; brass, wood and leather. As a lover of Victoriana, and Victorian genre fiction from SF to erotica, I'm a sucker for this kind of thing. Unfortunately, most of it is dreadful, though there are exceptions: Michael Moorcock's seminal Bastable trilogy, and Dahlquist's Glass Books spring to mind. Given this, I approached Carnal Machines, an anthology of Steampunk Erotica, with mixed feelings - it all seemed rather too good to be true.

I was pleasantly surprised. The writing is of a uniformly high standard, and the authors all deliver an effective period style, avoiding the linguistic and social anachronisms that undermine so much of the steampunk in print. Perhaps inspired by the title, most of the contributors have given us tales of characters at the mercy of fiendish Heath-Robinson sexual contraptions. In short, machine sex, a small but well-established fetish subculture that combines bondage with hobby engineering. On the face of it, mixing this esoteric kink up with an SF subgenre might seem likely to produce a result too specialised to find an audience. However, like the machines in the stories, it all works devilishly well. Most tastes and combinations are catered for, and the tales are told so well they capture your interest even when they aren't pushing your buttons. Many are begging to be opened out to novel length. In the end, it's the old-fashioned craftsmanship in the storytelling that makes Carnal Machines a hot and truly steamy collection. ( )
3 vote LordBangholm | Oct 22, 2011 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
King, D.L.Editorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ashbless, JanineContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bradean, KathleenContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Devlin, DelilahContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Feng, KannanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
King, D.L.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lawrence, JayContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Michaels, ReneeContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Roberts, Teresa NoelleContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sarai, LisabetContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Schechter, ElizabethContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Shellito, TraceyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
St. James, EliasContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Teepee, EssemohContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Von Page, PoeContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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The Victorians wrote some of the best and most enduring erotica. For such a tightly-laced age, people spent a lot of time thinking about things carnal. Jules Verne, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Mary Shelley, H.G. Wells, et al enthralled us with their visions of new possibilities. The rich and slightly decadent visuals of the steam age lend themselves perfectly to the new carnality of post-punk era. And, of course, what is repressed will be even more exciting once the corset is unlaced. Steampunk, even without sex, is erotic; with sex, it’s over-the-top hot. A widowed lady engineer invents a small device that can store the energy from sexual frustration and convert it to electricity to help power a home. Teresa Noelle Roberts shows us what it can do, confronted with sexual fulfillment. What volume of steampunk would be complete without a tale of sailing ships and the men who sail them? If your taste runs to sexy pirates in space, Poe Von Page will delight you with the mutinous...… (more)

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