A mate of a mate is a successful novelist – goes by the name of Marcus Sakey (which is, in fact, his name). His books are really good. I read the first one on recommendation but for the rest needed no encouragement – really good characters, really good stories, cracking writing – you read through the night until you finish. Absolutely top class.
Then I met the chap and he turns out to be a really good lad as well. Sort of chap you could drink beers and whisky with and have a well above average amount of fun. Comes from a stable of good lads over in Michigan and has not let them down – absolute diamond.
But since I met him I have read another of his books and this time, without labouring a point, I now notice the sex scenes.
Before, they were there I suppose. Sex is, after all, a beautiful part of life, even in paperback thrillers, But before I barely noticed.
Now, when I read these descriptions (far from OTT – just beyond banter level in fact) I feel a little bit embarassed and fail to stay in the moment. Imagine one of your mates in the pub describing two other people making love and you will have an idea of the discomfort. The books are still cracking – and I realise I am compounding the issue because if you read one now you will be imagining my discomfort, which may be discomforting – but it is at times like watching a Bond movie with your parents.
Which is why I try to hold back in the drafting of the old tasting notes. I wouldn’t want to come across like Meg Ryan in that deli with that bearded chap even if – occasionally – I feel that way.