Flashback to Juvenile Infatuations
By Jeff Salter
I’m dodging a bullet here. It’s a bit unseemly for a gentleman to reveal his most sizzling experience with a book or a film — even if that gentleman is the resident ‘Hound’. So here’s a compromising variation which might satisfy this week’s theme, without getting me in hot water … so to speak.
Books that were really HOT … in their day
Yep, here’s my dodge: these were the FIRST books I ever read that were hot. And they were smokin’.
Ian Fleming’s James Bond series. After seeing “From Russia With Love” on the silver screen, I was hooked on J.B. and had to read the books which inspired that movie and “Goldfinger” … and others (though they quickly went downhill). Don’t even remember which book I saw first, but I read ‘em all. At that time, paperbacks were 50 cents or less and my dad soon acquired the complete set.
Of course, they are unbelievably tame by today’s standards, but in the early 1960s, those books were scorching — a perfect blend of heroic action, lovely ladies … and escapism. Bond was quite a guy and all his women were gorgeously ‘built’.
One anecdote about my reading those ‘hot’ books (at about age 13-14): My dad approached me and said, “Aren’t you a little young to be reading those Bond books?” Without hesitation, I responded (quite sincerely … and not nearly as snarky as it sounds now): “Aren’t you a little old to be reading them?” My dad, in his ‘ancient’ mid-forties, just laughed … and we both continued to enjoy Bond books.
The hottest females in movies … way back when
This part is not about particular movies that were inordinately hot (although Marilyn Monroe’s performance in “Some Like It Hot” was extremely … uh, hot). Here, my dodge is that these were the FIRST screen stars I ‘fell in love’ with … back in those tender days of boyhood-through-adolescence. So, with no attempt to isolate particular films (and in no particular order), here’s my partial list of Hollywood Hotties who fed my juvenile infatuations:
* Jill St. John — vivacious, flirty, sexy, pretty, & smart
* Ann-Margaret — pretty, vivacious, flirty, & sexy (& usually managed to make it seem wholesome)
* Barbara Eden — vivacious, flirty, pretty, & sexy (& in her TV ‘Jeanie’ role … unbelievably naive)
* Marilyn Monroe — voluptuous & sensuous (but seemed oddly ‘innocent’ at times)
* Stella Stevens — voluptuous & flirty (& seemed to enjoy her roles)
* Kim Novak — lovely & sultry … but classy
* Sophia Loren — shapely & sultry (but usually seemed moody)
* Gina Lollobrigida — pretty, voluptuous, seductive & earthy
* Claudia Cardinale — shapely, seductive & earthy
* Janet Leigh — voluptuous (but not really ‘sexy’)
* Raquel Welch — she had the breathtaking proportions of a Barbie doll … but (unfortunately) only that same degree of warmth & personality
* Maureen O’Hara — gorgeous & spirited
* Jean Simmons — lovely & classy
* Deborah Kerr — lovely & elegant
* Debra Padgett — pretty in a ‘college campus’ sort of way
So those are among the film stars who made my juvenile hormones crackle. Who (on the silver screen) FIRST made you swoon? And WHY?
What were the FIRST books you read which were ‘hot’?