One of the first erotic books I ever read was Sex Mates of a Chess Mistress. It was part of my step-father’s porn collection that was barely hidden in the attic. I found the book and read it even though I was far too young to be reading porn. I barely knew what sex was, and the exploits described within baffled me. There was a scene where a woman covered herself in french toast batter and then cooked under a sunlamp until the batter became a yummy crust that another woman ate. It gave me the impression that all sex was a rather complex affair.
My step-father confiscated the book at some point but the memory of it lingered. For one thing, I recalled that it was about a secret agent who was protecting someone. I remembered something about Russians. And I never ever forgot about the weird deal with the french toast.
Years later, I tried looking for the book but I couldn’t remember the name. “Spy porn with chess and french toast” doesn’t help your internet searches. Still, off and on I kept trying and this past year I got lucky. I found this book on Amazon and instantly recognized the rather lovely cover. I bought it instantly and read it as soon as possible.
So what is Sex Mates of a Chess Mistress? first of all, it is a comedy, something I didn’t realize when I read it as a teenager. Regina Blue is a former prostitute who now works for a private agency that does government work. She is tasked with protecting Barbie Flounder, a young nymphomaniac who is also a chess genius. Barbie is scheduled to play the greatest champion of chess, a Russian man. The Russians want her dead, as do the anti-feminists, the Checker fanatics, and about a dozen other groups. When Barbie is nearly killed, her sex drive dies and so does her chess skills. It is up to Regina to respark Barbie’s sex drive while also protecting her.
So yeah, not exactly a book that a young person should be taking sex education from.
I will say that this book is far funnier than I expected. Comedy in the 70’s is usually terribly racist or misogynistic but this book avoids those traps. A flaming gay guy does get raped by Barbie but since we find out about it through a deposition written by conservative Southern cops, the result is hilarious without ever crossing over into mean. The groups out to kill Barbie are ridiculous and worthy of a Mel Brooks movie. There is an assassination attempt by a kangaroo for crying out loud.
There is less sex than I remember, which helps keep the story moving. Being the 70’s, there is a sex scene with a llama, but for the most part, the other sex scenes are pretty inventive. The scenes with a rather tiny endowed gigolo would be memorable in any book that didn’t include french toast sex.
Sadly, this book is the second book of a series about Regina and there never was a third. It is a shame because the comedy and sex are still worth reading today.