The Redemption of Don Juan Casanova – is it porno, erotica, or something else?

This morning—Saturday, December 20, 2014—I mailed off the USB drive to my copy editor with the final rough draft of my next novel, The Redemption of Don Juan Casanova. If all goes well, the book will be released by March 2015 at the latest.

My first novel was My Splendid Concubine, and it was historical fiction set in 19th century China based on a real-life love story.

My second novel, Running with the Enemy, was also a love story and a thriller set during the Vietnam War in the 1960’s, and I borrowed from events that happened to me and others in my unit in Vietnam when I served there as a U.S. Marine.

Number three was a memoir, Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé—with no love story or sex—and it came out in November 2014.

The Redemption of Don Juan Casanova is a 1990 libido-driven, multi-murder mystery, want-to-be love story set mostly in the palace of a nightclub called the Aphrodisiac Academe in a beach community in Southern California.

LowiDef Dec 19 Book Cover for Redemption With Title Flattened

In the early 1980’s, I was the maître d’ for a few years for a similar nightclub called The Red Onion in the same region, and the nightclub in this novel is modeled after that one that had three dining rooms—one with a glass ceiling and full-sized palm trees—and three bars for a nightclub that held up to 1,000 lusty dancers and drinkers, including a DJ’s booth and a stage for live entertainment.

“While the dance floor in a nightclub of this size is the central arena of seduction, actual sex usually takes place in bathroom stalls, exit stairwells, and so on. In other cases the disco became a kind of ‘main course’ in a hedonist’s menu for a night out.” – Disco American Heritage Magazine by Peter Braunstein, Vol, 50, No. 7, November 1999

The family that runs the fictional Aphrodisiac Academe in my murder mystery is a deliberately sexually dysfunctional family—or maybe they are normal and everyone else isn’t normal.

A reclusive 96-year old billionaire owns it all, and she helps rescue abused women with help from her grandson, the main character whose name appears in the title, but he has a problem. He has sworn off being the Lothario he was raised to be in the family tradition, and, for him, it’s a challenge to stay sexually sober. Don was taught by his Lothario grandfather to seduce women starting when he was age ten. In the novel, he’s forty. Will he succeed in leaving the old life of lust behind and find the love he craves with one woman?

And will he avoid getting murdered?

My question is this – is this novel pornography, erotica or just a mystery in a setting where lust and sex is normal?  The world of nightclubs and bars is a world we don’t read or hear about often, but there are literally thousands across the country, and the Top 100 List for Nightclubs and Bars in 2014 showcased the current economic strength of the industry with more than $1.5 billion in combined total revenue in 2013.

How big is this industry that is the setting for my first mystery? The US bar and nightclub industry has about 45,000 establishments (single-location companies and branches of multi-location companies) with combined annual revenue of about $20 billion.

Peter Braunstein wrote, “From the juke joint to the dance hall, American clubs in the postwar era have been the center of a cultural struggle pitting the forces of hedonism, revelry, and sexual liberation against those of socio-sexual stability and control.”

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves

Crazy-is-Normal-a-classroom-expose-200x300

Honorable Mention in Biography/Autobiography at 2014 Southern California Book Festival

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper left-hand column and click on “FOLLOW!”

Advertisements

8 thoughts on “The Redemption of Don Juan Casanova – is it porno, erotica, or something else?

  1. It also sounds like a mystery to me with a setting of lust and sex. However, it could be erotica/mystery depending on how much detail you go into with the sex scenes and how many of those scenes you have.

    Hey Marilyn, it’s good to see you!

    • There are sex scenes aplenty but I attempted to avoid graphic descriptions of penetration and orgasms. This might be an erotic/murder mystery that delves into lust and the art of seduction as a major plot thread sprinkled with several murders and attempted murders that are all intertwined with that hedonistic lifestyle.

      In the early 1980s when I worked nights and weekends as a maître d’ for The Red Onion in Southern California and taught in an intermediate school days Monday through Friday, I learned a few things about lust and how it sabotages the art of seduction. At the time, I kept busy getting by on about three to four hours of sleep daily. I was also working part-time toward an MFA in 20th century American literature with a focus on writing, and I did a research paper on the art of seduction as part of the MFA—during the research on this topic I discovered that there have been scientific studies on the subject—and that’s why I turned the nightclub at The Red Onion into sort of a real-life laboratory as part of my research to test the results of the scientific studies I was reading. And it was in that real-life laboratory, that I discovered the results of the scientific studies were accurate.

      In fact, there are scenes in the novel that I lifted from what I learned at The Red Onion during the real-life research I was doing into the art of seduction and attraction. Some, but not all, of what Don does in the book, I did—but there were no murders at The Red Onion. However, there were pimps, prostitutes and drugs and lots of bumbling lusty men, who had no idea what they were doing. Men driven blind by lust make every mistake there is in the art of seduction.

      About the same time, I also had a friend (he’s in his 80s today approaching 90 and still going strong) who has lived a long life as a Lothario starting as a teen, and he tutored me in his methods of seduction that pretty much supported what the scientific studies revealed about sexual, physical attraction—methods he learned on his own.

      Don Juan Casanova, the main character of the novel, knows everything I learned—for him, the art of seduction is part of who he is. It is his lifestyle, because that was how he was raised.

      • In high school, I mixed sci fi and fantasy with historical fiction—I’ve read the Hornblower series twice and too many books to count on the Civil War. Later came western—mostly Louis L’Amour who published almost 90 novels—followed by mystery. Dick Frances and Hillerman were my favorites. My reading is all over the place now.

        In fact, Hillerman’s daughter, Anne, has taken over the Leaphorn & Chee series after her father’s death and it worked for me.

      • I was glad to see someone has taken over Leaphorn and Chee. And someone else has taken over Robert Parker and several someones have taken on Holmes and Watson. I notice no one has taken on Christie, which is probably just as well.

        History and associated fiction has been a continuing strand throughout my life. It started with Thomas Costain, Anne Golon, and Mary Renault — and has not yet ended.

Comments are welcome — pro or con. However, comments must focus on the topic of the post, be civil and avoid ad hominem attacks.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s