Something a little bit different for review today on the Tale. A collection of short stories, poems and thoughts by James Franklin which I found simply captivating, thought provoking, emotional and, most of all, quite telling in the stories told.
While most of this work revolves around single page stories and poems, there is one work along the way that I loved from start to finish. While that single work was the heart of the collection for me, the rest of the author’s words were every bit as powerful and, in some cases, more.
- Title: Lesbian Succubus Diary and Other Steamy Stuff
- Author: James Franklin
- Length: 185 Pages
- ASIN: B0106JNOKW
- Publishing Date: June 21, 2015
- This work in Kindle Format at Amazon.com
The work tells of:
A collection of short stories and lyrical poetry with vampires, succubi, mechanical girls and other unusual creatures, that’s sometimes erotic and sometimes romantic, but sometimes quite the opposite. Are succubi sexy? Or terrifying? How would you like to be a vampire? Or to give your blood to a vampire? What if, instead of a heart beating, an oscillator ticked in your chest? And, instead of blood, steam whistled through your veins, driving pistons and spinning gears?
This is writing for the pleasure of writing. Poetry for fun, an exploration of rhyme and metre, from the 5–7–5 of haiku to the constrained repetition of villanelles, and featuring fairytale princesses and terrifying tentacle monsters. With a few dirty limericks thrown in for good measure…
Before I talk about Lesbian Succubus Diary, the core work in this collection, the balance of the stories, poems and thoughts need to be explored as well. The work ranges over a wide list of subjects, and in doing so there are just as wide emotions that each poem and tale brings to light. Not all of the works can be seen as romantic, some are bordering upon light horror, others are contemplative in nature. Still others are unashamedly erotic in tone and nature. The variety of the collected works is simply amazing and in being so there are many opportunities for the author to stretch their writing to the fullest.
Nestled into the midst of these poems and short stories is the single longest work in the collection, and as well, part of the title, Lesbian Succubus Diary. There are some short stories which offer characters that are full, open, and have depth to them unexpected. Truly in this work this comes out clearly in the lives told of the unnamed narrator, the romantic interest Denise and Meridiana. The work holds you from the first moment and continues to weave a passionate story of discovery, love, hope, loss, and in the end, acceptance.
It is not simply erotica, though that is part of the story, nor is it a tale just about the succubi. There’s more to be found in the relationships told, the love shared and how that transforms all of the characters in the work. There is a heart here, one that tells of the ache one succubus feels and how she finds that being human, or trying to be, can bring her to find her love.
I adored this story, really could not put it down and, I freely admit, I reread the story several times. There is just something about the work that tugs at me and I think that comes from the concept that succubi are complex beings, capable of love, but also needing to survive through sex. It is that conflict which pulls at the characters at several points, leading to heartache, heartbreak, and, eventually, revelation.
The story is complete and whole, leaving the characters in a place that feels right, and fulfills some needed release and joy. I do dearly wanted the story to be longer, to tell more about them. The core story itself is almost perfect, but… This could well be made into a full length novel for how strong the characters are and more.
Setting this story amid vivid poetry, eclectic writing and unique perspectives just makes for one of the most thoughtful, and at the same moment, sensual, works I have read. Simply a wonderful collection of thoughts by the author in which there is life, passion and more hiding in each word on the page.
Five out of five pitchforks.
Highly recommended for the art, the style, and, most of all, a story about succubi that is so captivating. I would love, dearly, to see Lesbian Succubus Diary become a novel, really there is so much heart and soul within that story. But then, the author holds that passion of writing so very well…