It’s gay sex depicted more frankly than you may ever have seen – but is the story fact or fiction?
Winging It may be the frankest depiction of gay sex ever written. Read it and you’ll know more than you ever thought you wanted to about what men do when they’re in bed together. But that isn’t the point exercising most reviewers. What they want to know is: did the writer make this story up? Or is it true?
This is what Goodreads reviewer Amie Gaudet had to say:
I am not sure whether to classify this book as fiction or non-fiction. In fact, the author wasn’t really sure either. However, since James Carlton is not the real name of the person this book is about I guess that is why this book must be classified as fiction.
In 2011 the author’s brother died at the age of 68, leaving behind a laptop with his memoirs on it. A private investigator was hired to discover if the memoirs were real and his response was that the memoirs were true as far as Jimmy remembered them. He states that the details may not be 100% accurate, but they are accurate as far as Jimmy remembered them.
This is the story about James (Jimmy) Carlton. The story begins when he is 18 in the 1950s in England and details his struggles with his sexuality. It also contains graphic descriptions of his introduction to the act of sexual intercourse and more.
In today’s society Jimmy would be labelled a bisexual, but that word did not even exist in the 1950s.
And Freda Larimer, also on Goodreads, says:
I have never read a book with so much detail of this life style. I am thinking this is a true story???
So. Is the story true? I’m going to have to leave you to make up your own mind – the book contains enough clues, in all conscience. I hope you won’t read it only as a detective story, though, because reviewers have also had some lovely things to say about the book. On Amazon UK, MaryH (I’m sorry – she says no more about herself than that) says:
Winging It is the story of a man who lives a sinful life and is redeemed through the love of God. I’m not going to give away the ending, but as I read the final chapters I was in tears. They were happy tears, because this is one of the most fulfilling endings I have read in a very long time. It’s well written, the characters are fully formed and convincing but it’s the ending that marks it out from the crowd. I didn’t think I would ever describe a book that describes gay sex so graphically as a lovely book, but that’s exactly what it is. A lovely book.
Amie Gaudet (see above) went on to say:
However, this book is not just about sex. It is an interesting look at the changing views of society over time and it is a frank look into the life of an actor during a very turbulent era. and: I found this book absolutely fascinating. The fact that it is labelled as fiction does not matter. Is it fact or fiction? I’m still not completely sure, but it is definitely an interesting (an eye-opening) read.
Evija Kreišmane on Goodreads says:
The ending was beautiful and made me rethink once more what I had read in those first pages. It gave a completely different angle to look at things. And it got the job done, it worked my brains. I love the books, which don’t spoonfeed me. This is one more reason I liked the book. Everyone can draw their own conclusions.
So there you are. Winging It – people seem to love it for its own sake. But is it fact? Or the product of a fevered (and filthy) imagination? The jury’s out. Your opinion would be welcome.
Read more about Winging It here.