Author: Kate J. Squires
32 Lays Later is the next book in The List series and gives us a much closer at Bethany, best friend of Cat from 30 Lays in 30 Days.
Cat and Jackson of 30 Lays fame have got it together and 32 Lays opens just before their wedding with Bethany ready to walk down the aisle as Maid of Honour. In this very first scene I found my eyebrows furrowing in a ‘what the…’ type moment, which was then explained quite simply.
I knew going in that this book centred around the adult entertainment industry and that Beth has an extremely overactive libido so when she starts the book stressing about fecal matter under her nail I put the pieces together and did not come up with her racing straight from her work as a nurse after a run in with an elderly patient refusing to use a bedpan.
Bethany and Ari, Jackson’s Best Man and best friend, have been circling each other since they met. There was an instant attraction but Beth has kept things platonic, which we later discover was at Cat’s request but we don’t know why. Finally the six month period Cat asked her to wait is up and Beth has a night of seduction planned.
The first hint of trouble comes when we discover that Ari is looking for love while Beth is ready for adventure. They share a connection and a sizzling sexual tension but the foreplay conversation puts an end to any satisfaction for either of them. The misunderstandings come thick and fast, Ari was worried that he would lose her when she discovered his profession but he was definitely not expecting it to play out the way it did. Far from being disgusted Bethany is is excited and wants a part in Ari’s next blockbuster, and of course Ari wants her for his lover so doesn’t want to bring her into his professional life.
Of course Beth pushes her point and gets herself cast, then follows about 180 pages of adult entertainment; scorching, gratuitous, graphic adult entertainment.
32 Lays Later is wall to wall sex; steamy, scorching, scintillating and at times kinda skanky sex. It is also an inside look at the porn industry and a behind the scenes look at the filming season. Beth signed on for two months, give or take, and in that time she and her cast mates filmed 32 movies. She was required to take part in all of the match ups you can imagine and being a ‘first timer’ we were taken up close and personal for all of them.
32 films with a cast of 8, and they were super stereotypical. The Italian Stallion, the Cowboy, the black man (sorry, not politically correct but I can not think of another description right now) and another guy so memorable I can’t even remember him. There’s also the redhead, the very young ‘innocent’ girl, Beth the buxom blonde and the late arrival – the russian beauty. On the whole the cast were pretty one dimensional but they were secondary to the story so it didn’t really faze me, except Honey. Honey really irritated me. She played her part and stayed in character ALL THE TIME, which meant talking like a five year old and referring to herself in the third person which grated A LOT.
We learned a little about the other cast members and why they are in the roles they are. Squires shatters the stereotypes about why people get into the industry with a cast of intelligent and well educated stars all performing for different reasons but none of them out of necessity. We see past the finished product and we see into the lives the stars lead off screen in filming season.
Ari has rented a mansion for the months of filming season and the entire cast move in for the duration of filming. There is almost as much off screen action as there is on screen but details are sketchy unless Beth is directly involved.
Beth has always been highly sexed but this is her first time on film and though she has always been up for pretty much anything there are some scenes that stretch even her imagination. Girl on girl is something she has never experienced though was always curious about, her debut season offers the opportunity to change all that – until the time comes for her first girl scene and she laughs uncontrollably causing script changes to take out all her girl scenes until Ari’s input can be gained.
We aren’t treated to all of Beth’s on screen scenes but we have a front row seat to a lot of them so we can see her film education and learn about the times where it isn’t all fun and frisky orgasms for all, there is a darker side that you need to learn to live with and Beth wasn’t prepared for that.
The emotional storyline was pretty predictable and I could tell you how it was going to end up from very early on. Having said that I thought it was well written and realistic, it explored the situation and it’s unique challenges well but it was all crammed into the last few chapters so it felt a little rushed.
I do find it a little amusing that the story focused on the porn industry and the fact that many movies are very short on plot and long on gratuitous sex because to an extent I think that’s exactly what this book was. There was story, and there was emotional connection, there was angst and plenty of conflict but at times it was completely overpowered by the sex, and I did find that it got a little repetitive after a while.
If you want scorching heat that will burn off your fingerprints just holding your reading device then definitely give it a go but if you only like slightly raunchy then this one might be best given a miss.
The story was well written and the relationship model that Squires has explored is unique. The film scripts are very basic and uninspiring, but I think that’s exactly what was intended. A lot of the filming season and cast were stereotyped but I think that too is exactly as was intended. I would be interested to know how things work out further down the track but I don’t know that I would want a story dedicated to the happily ever after. I would definitely like to know whether or not they got one though.
32 Lays Later is book #50 for the Australian Women Writers Challenge 2015.
Available September 24th through Momentum.