12 June 2018

Of Whips, Veins, and a Bottomless Pool of Warmth

Arctic Rendez-vous
Keith Edgar
Toronto: Collins White Circle, 1949
192 pages

I've finally finished my review of Arctic Rendez-vous, promised here last month.

No apologies. You'd have taken a long time, too.

Arctic Rendez-vous features the worst, most cringe-inducing sex scenes I've read since Donna Steinberg's I Lost It All in Montreal. Here's a sample:
The fragrance of her hair was in his nostrils and her gentle breath sent a warn zephyr against his chest.
   She whispered shyly, “I don’t know what came over me, Taffy — I —"
   Taffy said shakily, “I love you too, Marta, I always have.”
   Marta was quiet for a moment, then she raised her head and kissed him on the mouth.
   A vein was hammering in his temples and there was an uncomfortable warmth creeping through his thighs.
   His mouth sought for and found her moist sweet lips and she pressed close to him. Taffy, Darling, I want you so much — so much —"
   He slid his hands down her smooth back, the part of him that was still rational thinking that her body was suddenly hot, hot all over. He could hardly speak, his voice was so husky.
   “Are you sure, Marta? Are you sure?”
   “Please, Taffy. Please take me. Please. Please.”
   “I love you Marta, you know that don’t you?”
   The pressure of her thighs against him was unbearable. His mouth groped with desperate hunger for her lips and together they sank down into a bottomless pool of warmth and breathless wonder.
Those with strong stomachs can find the review posted at Canadian Notes & Queries online:
A Femme Fatale in the Frozen North
A bonus: In my my previous Arctic Rendezvous post, I remarked that the woman on the cover, Marta, should have black hair, adding that her breasts should be conical. This brought an emailed query, the answer to which is provided in this passage:
She trembled in his arms and twisted to bury her face in his shoulder, moaning softly. He slid his hands up her shoulders, pressing her to him until the hard cones of her breasts started a vein throbbing in his throat. 
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  1. Taffy and Marta? I thought it was a lesbian scene until I saw the pronouns. "Uncomfortable warmth"? Poor Taffy. Or is it Edgar who is confused?

    Reminds me of the gratuitous sex scenes in F. Paul Wilson's horribly horrid Lovecraft-cum-Howard rip-off THE KEEP. They were a mix of ersatz erotica and Harlequin romance triteness. Submissive woman, of course, and a hulky he-man equipped with magic sword. And that's literally a magic sword not a sexual metaphor. Though we get to read about his prowess in Puritanly described euphemisms as well.

    1. Wish it had been a lesbian scene, John, then I would've been spared this (which follows their first night together):

      "I’ve hated you, too, Taffy, because you beat me at every turn. I wasn’t used to that sort of treatment. And all the time I knew in my heart that I’d found my Inuk – my man, pre-eminently. Shall I get the Inuk’s breakfast?”