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“Carnal Machines: Steampunk Erotica” Book Review

Carnal Machines

“Carnal Machines” is a book of Steampunk Erotica published by Cleis Press and edited by D.L. King. The book is 201 pages long and includes 14 different erotic stories by a variety of authors. The book has a very sexy cover, but the cover is not discreet either. The book follows the regular Cleis Press erotic anthology format, and it’s very easy to read. Because of the front cover, this is probably not a book you want to read in public unless you have a way to hide the cover.

Carnal Machines is basically a book of erotica focused around the idea of steampunk erotica. To be honest, I’ve never really understood the point behind “Steampunk”. I know a lot of people find it sexy and really enjoy the idea behind it, but it’s never been my cup of tea. That’s why I was very, VERY surprised to find that I really really liked “Carnal Machines”. The plot lines are amazingly unique, and all of the erotica is very memorable. A lot of erotica books end up not being too memorable just because they’re about the same type of sex scenes. However, “Carnal Machines” is memorable just because of the type of stories that it features.

The stories it features are very sexy. For the most part, all of the stories feature the idea of rudamentary vibrators and sex toys. The stories focus around the idea of people creating these devices as well as using them. I love that quite a few of the stories feature around the idea of a “Doctor” taking these items to cure the “female hysteria”. The stories are all very plot-driven because the erotica needs to have a background so you understand where the characters are coming from. However, that just leads into very hot sex, so don’t think that the sex in this book takes a backseat; it doesn’t.

Really, it’s hard to describe all of the different action in the book aside from the fact that I just plain loved it! The sex is hot, and the plots are all very varied and comprehensive. The book easily stands out in my mind because of how unique the plot and the sex is, and this is one of the few erotica books that I’d have no issue rereading again in the future. It definitely stands out compared to some of the other erotica books I’ve read, and I’m hoping that Cleis Press continues to branch out into more steampunk erotica. This book definitely had some sexy stories, but I’m impressed to say that none were really duds. All were definitely sexy in some capacity, but there were a couple that definitely stood out.

“Dr. Mullaley’s Cure” by Delilah Devlin was one of those sexy stories. This story focuses on a nurse who goes to work as a small clinic where the women come in flushed and leave glowing. After working as a secretary, she finally is allowed to come and work with the machines, and she finds out exactly what type of work Dr. Mullaley does. He then realizes exactly how pent-up his nurse is, and she gets to try out all of the new prototype machines. This is a very sexy story with a lot of build-up and it’s neat to think about what if this was really a true story.

“The Servant Question” by Janine Ashbless is a sexy story as well. In this one, a guy of poorer status has made himself a name by creating robots that automatically do cooking and cleaning around the home. His robots cater to the rich and high-up in society. He takes house calls to perfect the robots to do the jobs completely to the owner’s satisfaction. One day, he is called in to deal with a robot that is not doing cleaning, but instead, happens to be wearing a strap-on and the hip movements aren’t quite up to par. This one is a very sexy story that, again, is very unique.

Overall, I love this erotica book. The stories are amazingly unique and still very sexy. The plots are so well-written that it’s easy to find myself wishing that I was alive during the time period that these stories are in, and the characters are well-rounded and well-thought-out. This book is definitely a keeper. Check out Carnal Machines from Cleis Press.

The Erotic Reading Review is a regular column written by Kayla. This column brings you reviews over erotica, instructional, and other types of sex-related books.

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