I have discovered I need to remember which friends read my Twitter stream. Particularly one particular friend who may be starting to find aspects to me that he never quite suspected.
This came about because I pre-ordered a copy of The Siren. This is very well written book, with deep characters, sparkling dialogue and a complex plot. It also has some fairly strong sexual content, though it’s handled masterfully. This book is also causing a bit of a stir amongst the readers, booksellers and suchlike that I hobnob with on Twitter, not the least because it is patently so much better than Fifty Shades Of Grey. However, The Siren is often held up as “erotica”, which not only troubles my friend, but he also doesn’t think I should be interested in it. And says so. To my face!
There are two issues here. I haven’t given him license to comment like that on how I act out my beliefs. I’m pretty sure he has the best of intentions, but I’m nearly as sure he would not understand if I tell him to stop it. He’s commented on my language before, too (I do swear), which I also had issue with. The objections are oriented around “being Christian” which really points out that he is projecting his idea of what a Christian is on to me.
Maybe I need to find the right time to say to him – gently, mind – that actually it’s not his place to do that.
The second issue is the definition of The Siren as “erotica”. I’m not convinced. It’s undeniably sexual in nature, but it also explores two quite strong personalities. I wonder how many people are reading it for the salicious description and how many, like me, are reading it for a cracking story with thoroughly interesting characters. That doesn’t make it erotica for me. Not really.
But I’m going to continue to read it.