Monday, December 17, 2012

JD’s Review of ‘Hot Flash’ by Eden Baylee

‘Desire’ is a six-letter word, not a four-letter word.

When deployed as a noun it is a feeling, not an act. Furthermore, desire is multi-faceted; it touches many dimensions of the human experience. And the feeling concerned is not always sexual.

Eden Baylee knows this well. Although in this collection of flash fiction and short poems her writing usually deals with the erotic and occasionally comic aspects of sexuality, there is a feeling of deeper longing that insinuates itself in the words.

As an author of ‘erotic’ writings, Ms Baylee’s work occupies a particular niche in a genre which is not overly-endowed (pardon the pun) with literary aspirations. Her writing is different. It has an elegance and simplicity of expression, and a little of Anaïs Nin’s style about it. If you’re looking for something with anatomical details and sweaty descriptions of making the beast with two backs, you’ve come to the wrong place.

For sure, there is a susurrus of doffed undergarments, noisy climaxes and the odd expletive, but that is not really what these fragments are about. They are about the heartbeat of emotion: some have a pang of loss, some the thrill of the unexpected encounter. But what the pieces all share to a degree is the experience of being a creature whose wits are permanently immersed in a bath of chemical illogicality.

It is impossible to do a specific review of the contents of flash fiction pieces without straying into spoiler territory, so I will here merely record that I most enjoyed ‘Doing it With the King’ and ‘A Second Chance with Death’; and while I found Ms Baylee’s short-line style in her poems gelled exceedingly well with their subject matter, for me the addition of rhyme in ‘Love Bites’ was a stretch too far.

This is the first time I have explored Eden Baylee’s writing, and I look forward to reading her novella-collections ‘Spring into Summer’ and ‘Fall into Winter’. Moreover I will be interested to see how her compact, polished style adapts to the format of the full length novel when her (as-yet-untitled) book hits the shelves in 2013.

'Hot Flash' is available at and

You can learn more about Eden Baylee by visiting her website or by following her on Twitter @edenbaylee


  1. John, I do believe your review is better written than my entire book!

    Thank you kindly for your wonderful, thoughtful words. Flash has been something I enjoy writing to hone my skills for lengthier pieces, and at times, to break out of erotica into suspense, thriller, and mystery genres.

    I love creating complete stories in as few words as possible, and this book as been a great exercise in collecting these stories.

    My gratitude to you for reading, reviewing, and posting your thoughts about my book. It's greatly appreciated.


  2. Eden, you're welcome. I like your storytelling style.

    Gosh, you like how I review? Maybe I should write a book ...? :-)

    1. The curious thing to me about this great review was that the length far exceeded the short, pithy, examination of my full-length book, "Mama's Madness" - makes me wonder with what other activity Mr. Dolan might have been preoccupied during the reading of Eden Baylee's book. :-)

      Kidding aside, John, your reviews have a way of enticing the reader to the books for further examination. It is that way for me with Eden's "hot flash - erotic stories and poems." In fact, "...susurrus of doffed undergarments..." did it for me. It's got to be one of those bedtime 'snuggle up to' reading experiences... Off to amazon...

      Billy Ray

    2. Thanks for the comment BR. Maybe I should give up writing and just be a book critic :-)

  3. Thanks Billy Ray for reading John's review and considering my book. Really appreciate it.
    As for John's examination of your book, I'm sure it was no less complimentary, I'll have to find out more ;)