CONFESSIONS OF A ROMANTIC PORNOGRAPHER

Maxim Jakubowski, Author . Do-Not Press/Dufour Editions $16.95 (249p) ISBN 978-1-904316-27-5

Author Conrad Korzeniowski has suddenly died, and a woman named Cornelia but calling herself Miranda Smith has been hired to get hold of his unpublished (and possibly nonexistent) pornographic memoir. It's a change of pace for Cornelia, whose usual day job is killing people, because her night job, which is dancing in strip joints, can't support her avidity for important first editions. The third-person account of Cornelia's sleuthing alternates with Conrad's luxuriantly raw sadomasochistic tell-all. Jakubowski, owner of London's famous Murder One mystery bookshop, claims Mickey Spillane as a literary forebear, and it rings true. The sex in Spillane stopped at the bedroom door, but it was always clear that what went on wasn't fluffy. Cornelia's part of the book isn't much of a whodunit, and the dialogue positively clunks, as in this phone call with her boss, Ivan. " 'Hi.' 'Good vacation?' 'Yes, I feel quite relaxed now,' Cornelia said. 'Good. The Caribbean is a good destination this time of year.' " No matter: these chapters are just teasing interstices, designed to build up appetite for Conrad's hot, hard, wet, rough, redolent, ritualistic and occasionally meditative, even soulful, pages. Conrad's brief encounter with Sarah Jane, sought on the Internet for a hotel dalliance, offers a memorable portrait of the masochist's power over the sadist. For those so inclined, or wanting insight, it is a classic scene. (Oct.)

Reviewed on: 10/18/2004
Release date: 08/01/2004
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 241 pages - 978-1-59687-881-5
Paperback - 250 pages - 978-1-59687-880-8
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