Sunday, August 16, 2009
Review: Let's Get It On by Jill Nelson
This is the last, great beach read of the summer.
Let's Get It On is the rather fanciful tale of LaShaWanda P. Marshall and her friends, Lydia Beaucoup and Acey Allen. They are the owners of a successful "full-service spa" (in other words: a brothel) for women in Reno, and they are opening their first franchise, on a yacht off the coast of Martha's Vineyard. These entrepreneurs are hoping to find a host of wealthy black women on the island who are willing to pay for the company of virile young men, if only the government will stay out of their way!
Now, when I say government, I don't mean the local vice cops. In LGIO, President George Bush has instituted his "No Child, No Behind" policy (make sure you read that carefully), which essentially outlaws recreational sex. Very bad policy for someone in the brothel business. In addition, there are some stirrings among the workers - job dissatisfaction, or something more ominous?
Let's Get It On is a perfect beach read. There's plenty of hot sex, a nutty plot and crazy characters that made me laugh out loud, and there's the sisterhood you find in all good chick-lit novels. It doesn't take itself too seriously, poking fun at the government, black intellectuals, and attitudes towards sex in general. It deals in its own way with the drama of dating for a modern woman. It's an interesting question, after all: would women pay for a convenient source of great sex? Even if the answer is no, the fantasy of heading down to the local spa, getting a manicure, a pedicure and maybe a few "special services" is a delicious one.
This is not a book for prudes, and if the cover doesn't make you blush, the language might. I'm not one for a lot of euphemisms - I don't mind if you call the body parts by name and describe the action in some detail - but this treads the line of almost too clinical. Still, considering the hot action it describes, I don't think that's a huge failing. The book has plenty of humor, good sex, a little romance and even a little politics. Lots of fun for those final days of summer.
The first book in this series was Sexual Healing, about the ladies' first spa in Nevada. I was a little skeptical about her portrayal of the culture of Martha's Vineyard (it is a little over-the-top), but her book Finding Martha's Vineyard certainly convinces me she knows what she's talking about. She has also written other works of non-fiction on her experiences as a black woman. For more information on her books and other writing, check out her website, JillNelson.com.
My copy of Let's Get It On was an Advanced Reader Copy; pick up yours before the summer's gone at Amazon.com.