The Scorpius Equation - Larry Townsend

Ladymol's Review

This novel gives a whole new meaning to the saying ďIn Space, No One can Hear You Scream!Ē And you just know Iím not talking about the painful ones of those.

Set in 5000 something, this is a wonderful sex romp that is far and above the normal level of writing for something that has this much sex in it. The futuristic setting is carried off with enormous aplomb, seamlessly woven into a very human story with just enough detail to intrigue, but not too much to read like a techies handbook. Itís even used to enhance the sex (sex in artificially high gravity? You have to read it!).

The whole premise of the book is intriguing in many ways. This is a society that has left earth, and as itís travelled through the galaxies, itís left behind the old earth ideas. Most notably, heterosexuality is a thing of the past. Almost all relationships are male on male, as most space crews are exclusively male. It seems to confirm, in a very tongue-in-cheek way, how false heterosexual history of the early American frontier is, for like this future century, old earth history was actually the story of men. In addition, this society has ďcuredĒ aging. Thus, the main reason for a heterosexual life (reproduction for the survival of the species) has been made redundant. People are free to copulate only for pleasure, and you just know the choices most of them make!† They take perfect bodies for granted, as they live in a world of replacement body parts on demand.

The plot is a familiar one, but itís still freshly handled. A space cruiser has apparently crashed, and a salvage pilot, Alpha, is commissioned to seek survivors and take what salvage he can find. The accident happened on the border between the two great empires, and his mission becomes increasingly deadly.

As I said, the sex is unrelenting, wonderfully graphic, incredibly hot and utterly in context, which is a very neat trick. An almost exclusively male on male society, sex is not taboo; itís celebrated, and gorgeous men copulate with gorgeous men in public (huh, someoneís been reading my Christmas list), and on almost no pretext. You can tell that the author enjoyed writing this book. His joy comes over on every page. There are some wonderful little digs at our own societyóI particularly liked the hushed gossip about one of the pilots who (wait for it) prefers women! Fortunately for everyone else, he keeps this degenerate behaviour private! It reminds me of something an old Naval captain once said to me when he heard that homosexuality was now legal in the Royal Navy: ĎNext thing you know, itíll be bloody compulsory!í

I canít imagine anyone not loving this book (unless you prefer your sex scenes less graphic). If you are a fan of sci-fi anyway, then I think youíll adore it. But be warned, itís hardcore sex all the way through.Ö Iím tempted to say itís no-holes-barred, but the pun is too dreadful.

Very highly recommended.


Cerisaye's Review

Earthdate 5609 AD.† Alpha Yarboro is captain of a space salvage ship based far from the mother planet, whether destroyed or left uninhabitable, never made clear.† Home is Port Morrison on the planet Luxor, where Alpha lives in a group marriage situation with six other people, three women and four men.†

Alpha is exclusively samesex, and enjoys a special relationship with Kent who is bisexual.† That homosexuality was immoral on Earth is considered ridiculous and baffling in this distant future.† Itís a small menage by the standards of their kind but theyíre happy with the arrangement.† The spouses have sex together but their relationship is more tender love and caring companionship than lust.† Thereís a great communal bed but they also have individual sleep spaces for those moments when partners wish to be alone together.† Solitary sleep doesnít happen often.

The novel is pretty much straight science fiction with added gay sex.† Lots of it, and quite explicit, as youíd expect from a writer famous for graphically erotic fiction.† What surprised me was writing quality and plot.† I anticipated porn held together with the usual inconsequential rubbish and little characterisation.† Apparently Townsend has been criticised for allowing story to get in the way of sex in this early book. Personally I prefer to have both so Iím happy.† Alpha is a lusty, likeable narrator.

The story begins when a passenger craft, Orion Maru, loses contact with Star base Scorpius VI, with no distress signal and apparently no survivors.† Alpha is hired by frantic owners Galaxy Tours Ltd. representative Mr. Richard Chang to investigate the shipís mysterious disappearance, ahead of an inquiry and devastating lawsuits.

Accepting the job leads Alpha into an adventure that threatens not only his life and his spousesí but the entire future of the Confederation of United Planets and hostile neighbours the Scorpius Empire.† The Scorpians are a cruel and arrogant race reminiscent of Star Trekís Klingons, but much better looking. Okay itís fairly standard stuff: two galactic empires collide to the brink of war and our hero races to save the day.† Itís hawks & doves on both sides.† Thereís an ancient emperor who takes a shine to Alpha and gives him a puzzling equation to solve thatíll make him the man of the moment if he succeeds- or responsible for unleashing mutual destruction should he fail to meet the wily challenge.

Alpha teams up with old sparring partner, Jeffro Laro, a Scorpian he trusts because of their close sexual relationship. Longevity drugs have extended humanoid lives to Biblical level, several centuries of active existence free from noticeable effects of ageing.† Genetic controls ensure physical perfection.† In the story, sex is both weapon and effective interrogation technique, and for uncomplicated physical release.† But throughout its underlying nature is an expression of intense and lasting love.† Descriptions are graphic, but more emotionally engaging than porn.

The special bond between Alpha and Kent is augmented by the introduction into their group of Loni Ing, Eurasian featured boy of lithe and fragile beauty who captivates Alpha.† Loni is Alphaís secretary but his father has influential connections and ancient knowledge that might win the dangerous game his boss plays where everything is at stake.

I enjoyed the book, as much for the story as abundant sex and eroticism.† Canít say fairer than that.† Recommended.

Published by Badboy Books. ISBN: 1563331195

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