Thursday, December 11, 2008

“Perhaps you'd like to take off your shorts.”

Yes… Yes… Yes… Not only has the 2008 Bad Sex in Fiction Award winner been announced but John Updike -- possessor of one phallic name (two if you count its change in orientation) capped by a nod to Sappho -- has been awarded a lifetime achievement award.

All the critically unacclaimed moaning, yielding, and devouring passages of the short-listed novels can be found here.

This excerpt, from Simon Montefiore‘s Sashenka, is my favorite, although it didn’t take the grand prize.
I've got a lover, she thought, incredulous. His irrepressible carnality enthralled her. It was like the first time with her husband, her only other lover – but then it was not like that at all. In fact, she reflected, this is me losing my real virginity at the hands of this infernal, lovable, Jewish clown who is so unlike any of the macho Bolsheviks in my life.

He's a madman, she thought as he made love to her again. Oh my God, after twenty years of being the most rational Bolshevik woman in Moscow, this goblin has driven me crazy!

I’m also smitten by the delicacy of the skivvies removal scene in The Gate of Air by James Buchan.
Jim ached with her nakedness. His arms and legs were as lifeless as fallen branches. He understood that love was a power and force of a different order from anything else beneath the sky, and could demolish not merely family relations or notions of right and wrong but also what was real and what was not. Jim's world had been knocked a little out of its axis, and would not be restored.

She turned to him. Her face had taken on her nudity or rather had shed a veil it wore for the world. She said:

'Perhaps you'd like to take off your shorts.'

'Do I have to?'

'I think you do.'

Well it does make things easier.

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