There are times when I think that "believability" is over-rated. The earliest stories were tales of gods and monsters and magical beings. These stories still engage us because they connect with us on a sub-rational level.
Zaria Von Mars's stories are a bit like that. On a rational level it is absurd to believe that a man and woman who are best friends would engage in mutual masturbation and oral sex, and that the man would encourage the woman to have sex - including very rough and sleazy sex - with other guys and women, and yet that they would feel that sexual intercourse itself, between them, would be "stepping over a boundary" just like the best friends say in all those terrible chick flicks you've seen.
But in a Zaria Von Mars story that doesn't matter. In fact, the absurdity is a plus because it unchains us from any kind of sense of security we might get from rational terms of reference. Movie stars don't really have secret sex clubs hidden behind the internal walls of department stores. Or do they? LIke when looking at some kind of surrealist painting, we wonder for a moment if it is our own grasp on reality which is faulty.
This is not a book for everyone. Some of it is shocking. There is tender eroticism here, but it is intermixed with scenes of rape and other kinds of brutality and ugliness. If you want an easy book for pleasant titillation, this isn't it, but if you want a roller-coaster ride through the beautiful, the sensual and the hideous, step aboard.
(review of free book)