Charles Harvey

Literature & Fiction

Author Profile

Charles  Harvey

Charles W. Harvey is a native Houstonian and a graduate of the University of Houston. He studied fiction under Rosellen Brown and Chitra Divakaruni at U of H. He has studied poetry under Joyce James and Cynthia MacDonald. In 1987, Charles was a 1st prize recipient of PEN/Discovery for Cheeseburger, which went on to be published in the Ontario Review. In 1989 Charles Harvey was awarded the Cultural Arts Council of Houston Grant for Writers and Artists. Also in 1989, he was a finalist in the MacDonald's Literary Achievement Awards. Charles has been published in Soulfires, Story Magazine SHADE, High Infidelity, The James White Review, and others. He is the author of Maura andHer Two Husbands, Boy For Hire, and several short story and poetry collections.

Books

Into The Water, A Short Story

Literature & Fiction

In this fictionalized account, Money Mississippi, notorious for the brutal murder of Emmett Till has had a one hundred and eighty-degree turn from its old ways. A mile from the infamous Bryant’s Grocery and Meat Market sits a big shiny blue Walmart along an avenue populated with fast food restaurants and a Starbucks. Young black men with pants sagging walk along the broad sidewalks holding their girlfriend’s hands. No one bats an eye if the girl is blue-eyed and blond. At times a pickup truck bearing confederate flag license plates will rev its engine, but the young seem unfazed. A prosperous black population lives along the banks of the Tallahatchie River. Their ranks culled from nearby military installations and new industry. Still, taboos exist, and people remember the old Money Mississippi.

Book Bubbles from Into The Water, A Short Story

Alvin vs Emmett

Note: This book/story has nothing to do with the Paula Hawkins novel. I had been working with this title long before Ms Hawkins book was published. I decided to keep the title anyway. The story takes place in Money Mississippi, the town known for the Brutal murder of Emmett Till in 1955. As this passage notes, times have changed. The town has grown from its heinous notoriety. Blacks and white mingle and the young date. Alvin is a boy similar to Emmett. Like Emmett, he's very confident in his ability to woo the opposite sex and even to tread into liaisons with other races. Of course in today's Money, he's in no danger of being killed. However he pushes boundaries. Partly on a dare, he decides to approach Jill, an older white woman who has lost one of her arms. The ghost of the old Money and Emmett linger and tragedy strikes.

Maura and Her Two Husbands

Literature & Fiction

In this sexually charged novel, we meet Maura and Sidney, a young couple going through the motions of being in love as they climb the corporate ladder at their respective jobs. Their relationship is comfortable, but lacks excitement, until one day Maura comes home early and catches Sidney having sex with a man. Maura's reaction may surprise you as her emotions, fears, and repressed desires pull her into a very unusual arrangement.

Book Bubbles from Maura and Her Two Husbands

Maura's Shopping List

Much has passed since Maura walked in on her husband Sidney and his friend Easy having sex. The emotional toll is all behind them now. Maura has accepted the arrangement so as to enjoy the pleasure of Easy, her new sexual freedom, and to ward off the so-called curse that follows divorced women in her family, In this humorous section, Easy has given Maura a list of items to purchase from an adult emporium that specializes in sex toys. Easy is a poor speller, but the very helpful clerk helps Maura decipher the list and navigate around the store. Maura's liberation is coming in full force.

Maura and Easy Make Love

In this excerpt, Sidney has left the the townhouse he shared with Maura. He is in pursuit of a divorce and a new life. Under the pretext of looking for his underwear, Easy comes to visit Maura late one night. She let's him in and pretends to fall for his ruse only because she fears Sidney's divorce will bring a curse into her life. She thinks if she allows Easy to seduce her, perhaps she can coax him into marriage and ward off the curse. Maura fears divorce because the women in her family seem to have come to no good end after splitting from their men. However, her lust for Easy is as potent as her fear of the curse. The title Maura and Her Two Husbands comes form a movie I saw back in the 80's--Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands. As in Dona Flor, Maura finds the two men to be polar opposite. Sidney has failed to arouse her passions, while Easy seems to have set them free. I find it intriguing to put characters in situations, most of us will only read about.

Why Maura Hid Her Passion

I must warn you that the language of this book is explicit. I'm attempting to merge erotica and literary genres. I do understand if the language is too strong for readers who read traditional romances and literary works. In this excerpt, Maura and her now estranged sister Myesha are walking home from school one afternoon. The teen girls stumble upon an explicit porn magazine and began perusing its contents. The girls titter back and forth over the pictures, mocking and at the same time are intrigued. A stranger interrupts them. Later that night, they continue until Myesha falls asleep. Maura is aroused by the photos. Just before she falls asleep, she puts the magazine in Myesha's backpack. The next day the girls return to school. Myesha gets in trouble when the magazine falls out of her backpack. Their grandmother is called to the school. Maura denies any knowledge of the magazine. Myseha is severely whipped at home by their grandmother. Maura learns that passion can have some serious consequences and thus she spends a lifetime burying her carnal thoughts and desires. But throughout the years she has held onto a photo that serves as a metaphor and a sliver of her sexual passion. That passion has remained dormant until the day she arrived home and caught her husband in bed with another man.

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