by The Chocolate Dictionary
Literature that reads like chocolate – not necessarily about chocolate but redolent of it. Chocolit is mostly identified with romantic fiction, of which there seem to be six distinct genres :
- The Milk Tray variety, characterised by the highly romantic stories published by Mills & Boon etc.
- The Galaxy variety, typified by Bridget Jones and other so-called chick lit novels.
- The praline variety, characterised by more literary authors such as Jane Austen, Georgette Heyer and Catherine Cookson.
- The chocolate bar variety, with its modern plots, typical of authors such as Jilly Cooper and Joanna Trollope, etc., and writers such as Françoise Sagan, whose novels were once described as “like eating big boxes of exotic chocolates spiked with illicit substances”.
- Catering for readers with darker tastes is the ganache variety of chocolit, typified by the novels of Emily Brontë and Laurell K. Hamilton.
- Then there is the liqueur variety of chocolit, characterised by strongly erotic themes, as found in the short stories by Anaïs Nin and novels published by the Black Lace imprint.
For others, chocolit consists of novels containing passages of ornate or flowery prose:
- Brideshead Revisited, in which Charles Ryder describes Venice as like “drowning in honey, stingless”.
- Christopher Fry’s play Venus Observed, in which the central character sees “no end to the parcelling out of heaven in little beauties”. The play being endowed with particular credibility as chocolit because of the chocolate associations in the author’s name.
- The Harry Potter books which, according to Stephen Fry who narrated them for the BBC, are “like swimming in chocolate”. And with a name like his he should know all about swimming in chocolate.
There are also the inspirational books with chocolate in the title, such as Kay Allenbaugh’s Chocolate for Women series, written to caress the heart and nourish the soul.