This post was originally published at Novelicious.com and is now at WritingTipsOasis.com. WritingTipsOasis.com acquired Novelicious.com in June 2022.
Reviewed by Lisa Spoors
Meet Estelle, a thirty-something single mum who runs her own business, Cafe Crumb. Like a lot of local businesses, the cafe isn’t doing as well as Estelle had hoped, and when she discovers that one of the cafe’s neighbours – a book shop – is closing down, Estelle decides to start a book group to try to boost business in Cafe Crumb.
Estelle isn’t even sure if anyone will turn up for the first meeting of the club, so is pleased when four people arrive. Unfortunately though, Estelle’s first book club choice Tess of the D’Ubervilles doesn’t quite go down well. One of the group spots Estelle’s copy of Ten Sweet Lessons, the latest must-read ‘naughty’ book, and suggests the book club try that one next. From then on, the club work their way through a variety of erotic fiction, leading to some surprising consequences in their own lives.
We’re introduced to the other members of the book club in the first few chapters. There’s single girl Gracie. Opinionated and individual, Gracie loves all things fifties. There’s Sue, who is recently retired and has big dreams to travel and live life to the full. Unfortunately Sue’s husband doesn’t share her passion. There’s newlywed Rebecca, who is desperate to keep the spark going in her marriage, and then there’s the only male member of the group, Reggie, who originally joins the book group as research for his university thesis, but ends up becoming a fully fledged contributor.
As the book progresses we see each character come into their own; one thing I felt all five characters had in common at the beginning was a lack of confidence, either in themselves or in going for what they wanted in life, but the support of the new friends they make through the club seems to strengthen each member’s self belief and drive them forward.
I love the idea of this book – since Fifty Shades of Grey it’s become more acceptable to read and enjoy erotica, and the titles suggested throughout the book (and on the last few pages) range from the extremely mild to the downright disgusting! I think including these titles and the way the group discuss them is brilliant for anyone who might want to venture further into this genre. Although the book club focuses on erotica, and there are some saucy scenes in the book, it’s not overdone and the characters come across as realistic and relatable.
I really enjoyed The Naughty Girls Book Club. The storylines were gentle but engaging and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a light-hearted read. Now I have one question – does a book club like this really exist and where can I sign up!?