A lively discussion of ancient and modern Pagan literature -- including children's books, graphic novels, science fiction, fantasy, and mysteries -- along with interviews, author highlights, and profiles of Pagan publishers.
Spotlight On: The Erotic Pagans Series
Series: The Erotic Pagans
Titles: Beltane Fires, Samhain Shadows, and Yuletide Temptation
Publisher: Naughty Nights Press
Author: Erzabet Bishop
Prices: .99 to $1.99 US (eformat only)
I am a bit of a romance junkie. While I read a wide range of genres -- from history to religious studies to mythology to children's books -- I probably read more romance than any other genre. I should qualify that, though: straight up contemporary romance bores me to tears, and I have zero interest in sports-themed romance novels (yes, there is an entire sub genre of Nascar romance stories). Throw in a well-crafted fantasy world, though, or an alien world or two, or a witch or three, and I'm sold. I like my romance with a hefty dose of otherworldliness and magic.
My biggest gripe with said otherworldly romances has been the notable lack of Pagan-friendly stories. Sure, there are paranormal and magic and psychic romance novels out the wazoo; the darn things are everywhere. But most of those treat mythology, the Gods, and those who worship them as jokes or caricatures*, they play so fast and loose with the source material that it is barely recognizable.
Needless to say, I was thrilled when I found Erzabet Bishop's Beltane Fires. I was even happier when I discovered that it was part of a series: The Erotic Pagans from Naughty Nights Press. Bishop's series not only features Pagan characters, but the stories are all set at and around important holidays (though the books feature some of the same characters, they can be read as stand-alone stories). While the novellas do feature a happily ever after, these are not your stereotypical romances. Beltane Fires focuses on Ceri, a woman comfortable with her own sensuality, who finds the happiness that has eluded her in the arms of the Forest Lord. In Samhain Shadows, Brigit is still mourning the death of her beloved mother; a vision from the Morrigan leads her to Dr. Julia Oliver, who offers her the home and acceptance she deserves. The most recent offering, Yuletide Temptation, focuses on Jasmin whose run-in with her old high school crush Shane … um … let's just say he has a problem with her being a witch. Both have misconceptions and prejudices they need to overcome before they can find their happily ever after.
Each of these novellas is fairly short -- in the neighborhood of forty to fifty pages -- making them quick, but satisfying reads. Perfect for destressing after a hard day at work. The good news is, Bishop hopes to continue the series … So go buy the first three volumes so that Naughty Nights Press will keep publishing them!
* I was happily reading along in Viper Moon when protagonist Cassandra Archer protested that she was not any kind of witch/Pagan, et cetera, even though she was a servant of the Earth Mother; after all, she believed in God. I stopped reading.
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