March 27, You Know You Want This. In a grim first-person plural, a deviant couple recounts how their bum-of-a-friend starts crashing on their couch after a bad breakup. Realizing he can overhear their nightly escapades, the couple starts fantasizing, then teasing, then after a deluge of alcohol, goading him to watch. Finding him back with the girlfriend, they ruthlessly collect themselves and order she be stopped.
The Joyce Carol Oates Story That Shares DNA With 'Cat Person’
But Are You Sure?: On Kristen Roupenian’s “You Know You Want This: ‘Cat Person’ and Other Stories”
The 4,word story about lousy heterosexual sex provoked massive debate online. Arriving a little over a year later, the provocatively titled You Know You Want This is an entertaining debut with plenty to say for itself on the subjects of sexual politics, shame and the complex nature of desire. In one story, The Boy in the Pool , gay narrator Kath plans a hen party for her friend and childhood crush Taylor. The story is many things: a nostalgic look at teenage sleepovers, an examination of triangular friendships, an excruciating account of the forced joviality at hen parties. But most of all, as expected from Roupenian, the story cuts to the quick on issues of sex and desire. Roupenian has set herself apart from the pack with the phenomenal success of Cat Person and she will most likely be judged not against her contemporaries but against her own incredibly high standard. Not every story in the collection feels as gut-wrenching or as finely observed as Cat Person.
Cat Person author Kristen Roupenian on the trouble with writing about sex
Phillips, Kristen, ed. Women and Erotic Fiction. Critical Essays on Genres, Markets and Readers. Publishers
In the story, a college student named Margot goes on a long, disastrous date with a man in his mids named Robert. At the end of the night, Margot sleeps with Robert, despite realising, belatedly, that she has no desire to do so. Her reasons for making that choice remain opaque even to her, and she ghosts him the next day.