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by Hanne Blank

Editor Hanne Blank writes, “Many of the pieces are frank in celebrating the transformative force of sex, lust, desire, and the recognition that one is desired.” Zaftig women, described variously as “full-figured” and “pleasingly plump,” have long been a source of fetish and humor in erotic literature. Now the publisher of Best Women’s Erotica turns the tables with surprising, steamy stories showcasing the sex lives of women of size and their admirers. “Not only is Blank’s work infused with humor and mischievous irony, her delight in her own body and her sexuality is fabulously contagious: she makes you feel good about yourself in every way, shape, and form.” — Paramour
Download Zaftig: Well Rounded Erotica epub
ISBN: 1573441228
ISBN13: 978-1573441223
Category: Literature
Subcategory: Short Stories & Anthologies
Author: Hanne Blank
Language: English
Publisher: Cleis Press; 1 edition (June 9, 2001)
Pages: 200 pages
ePUB size: 1174 kb
FB2 size: 1446 kb
Rating: 4.2
Votes: 137
Other Formats: mbr docx azw lrf

Zaftig is something that a lot of people have been waiting a long time for. An erotica book featuring REAL people, by that I mean, heavier, fatter people, women and men alike. This is a collection of short stories by various erotica authors who I peronsally don't really know all that well. Now, even though beautiful fleshy figures are the spotlight here, there are still a couple of thin people featured in a few stories.

Now, although this is a good book and worth the purchase price (most places sell it around $10-$12), I wouldn't say I was 100% satisfied with it. Well, let's state the good and the bad.

Good things about this book are the variety of sexual situations presented, from the gay and lesbian, to one story featuring bondage acts, to a couple of others with straight couples. There is definitely something for everyone. The downfall to this is that depending on who you are, I don't think most people will be satisfied with this variety as most people really aren't into exaggerated freaky S&M type sex or even three-somes to dildo fetishes. I myself am a 22 year old straight non-overwieght male and the stories I found to be the most enticing were the ones featuring straight sex - a man with a heavy woman. The writing is also very commendable. Fat bodies are described with such force, reality, uniqueness, grace and beauty which I highly appreciated, and isn't the type of description the ignorant american media or masses would use to describe a heavy person. One story featured a fat and husky gay man and the skinny female student who has a huge crush on him and thinks about sex with him and his gay partner. What is interesting in this particular story is the way the big man is described; thick masculine arms, hefty, firm and empowering - definitely not something I'm used to and even though I'm not gay, it gave me a sort of an appreciation for the artistic figure of a big man's body. A few of the stories featured some comedic relief as well, always good. And really to top it all off, the women in these stories are simply ravishingly sexy in all their full-figured, soft and rounded forms!

Now the downside and why I gave this a 3.5. First off, not every story in this is a winner. There are about 3 or so that simply did nothing for me. With a plethora of different authors, you will notice a difference in creative writing. Some are ingeniously creative in their artistic and poetic descriptions, while others simply feel dry and stiff in stories like "The Model" and "Breathing Lessons" and the worst "Alphabet Soup." I was also getting bored w/ the balance of situations in this book. By that i mean that a good 70 - 80% of the stories featured lesbian erotica, and though I did enjoy the descriptions of these beautifully figured women, a lot of them were still described too many times as "butch" and such. Also, since I am a straight male, I would enjoy more straight sex oriented stories, I don't know i guess it just makes me free to picture myself in those situations. A lesbian female would give this a 5 star rating easily. A gay male would probably give this a 1 star rating. One final complaint - the book is just too short. There aren't enough stories in this and all of them are relatively short. Most avid readers will be able to finish this one in a day, easily. Slower readers shouldn't take any longer than a week.

Though it is great to finally see gorgeous fat women featured in sexual situations in all their splendid plentiful beauty (b/c yes, fat women have sex too, and yes they are as gorgeous and just as sexy as thin women), and though this is a wonderful start, people who are into REAL sex will still be left hungry for more even after this book. But for the cheap price, pick it up, there is great stuff in here!
As at least one other reviewer noted, it was not readily apparent from the book description that most of the stories are lesbian stories. I bought this book for my wife, and after reading yet another lesbian-based story, she quit reading the book. Gay erotica is not our cup of tea - we prefer straight erotica. Had there been at least a good balance of straight to gay, it would have been more acceptable, but the lack of balance ruined it for my wife. The book description should really have made this aspect of the stories more obvious.

Perhaps the editor will release another similar book that is more geared towards heterosexuals.
Hanne Blank (ed.), Zaftig: Well-Rounded Erotica (Cleis, 2001)

I'm not usually one for editors who insert their own work in anthologies, but I have to admit, I liked Hanne Blank's story in here the best of the entire lot. In a collection that ranges from the explicit to the in-your-face explicit, Blank's "Denial" is a whole different ball of wax. It's tense and restrained. It focuses on two characters who don't really understand their attraction to one another, and proceed accordingly. My jaw actually dropped at the end. An impressive bit of story-crafting all around.

Not to say the rest of the book isn't good, it's just good in a different way. Those who find themselves geared toward the conventional ideas of beauty probably aren't going to find much here that's workable for them (though Blank's story is the exception to the rule), but those who are a bit more open-minded about body types are going to lap it up like cream. Like most anthologies, the quality of the stories does vary, but there's nothing here that's entirely unreadable, though some of the stories are far less concerned with character, plot, etc. than they are with advancing a viewpoint. Still, message erotica is kind of like [...]; it'll take the most discerning, critical viewer to really care about shallow characters and nonexistent plots when all the blood is stampeding from brain to nether regions.

A fun little collection, and a must-read if you're into this particular slant on the genre. *** ½
I commend the book for pioneering a new section of the genre of erotica. I definitely found several real gems in the book that made it worth 10 times it's buying price, like "Breathing Lessons," and "Flesh Love," real works of absolute art. I've read them over and over and over, particularly "Breathing Lessons", which makes me cry every time. But I didn't find these two particularly erotic.
On the negative side, I didn't really feel like it focused on the desires of the average reader. This wouldn't have bothered me so much, except that since this is the only book that I know of that focuses on the zaftig figure, so I would have hoped for something that was perhaps a little less broad in it's ambitions. At times it even sort of felt like a compilation of obscure fetishes, like in the story "How Loretta Got a Schlong" - weird, not exotic, not quirky, not on the edge, just weird. There were several of those, like sex with a very old man, or masturbating with an idol which then becomes a fat gay man who then has sex with his male lover and then turns into a woman. It also felt as if most of them focused on butch lesbians - which had their place to be certain, but it really felt like they were the spot light. All of these would have been fine in a book several times it's length.
Overall, this is absolutely worth purchasing, but I wouldn't really plan on being aroused, it's just a really good read. You'll find maybe one or two that make you breathe heavily or move your soul, and they really are absolutely worth it. I'll be the first to buy a sequel if it comes out! Really, honest to goodness worth the money.