I recently read…

…”Coming of Age in South Bank” (Pickleworks Press (2016) by Gene Clements. Clements, whom I met in my back-up cafĂ©, is a retired architect. I may not have this exactly right, but a couple years ago, a niece or daughter of friends — anyway a woman a generation or so younger — told him she was making a living writing sex novels for Young Adults. I can’t do that, he thought, but I can do Senior Citizens.

Thus began the Tilly and Elmer stories. They were originally given away — then sold for $1 each (resulting in a significant market share drop-off) to e-readers and, later, collected into “The Sexy Seniors of South Branch.” “Coming” flashes back to the early ’60s, when the couple begin dating, while at a small town mid-western high school, and follows their sexual adventures through their departure for college. The text is explicit — and X-rated — though the tone is humorous, affectionate, and well-balanced in its handling of both sexes. The spot-illustrations, also by Clements. don’t depict much beyond what you’d get in a Rock Hudson-Doris Day movie.

I enjoyed the read, though. It was. at minimum, of socio-anthropological interest, though, I must admit, it didn’t, shall we say, get much of a rise out of me. In contemporary jargon, only the most tissue-papered sensibilities will need trigger warnings.