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on 17 November 2017
ok but boring
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on 2 June 2017
This will divide readers, as I am sure it always has done. Taken in context and viewed as an example of erotic literature of the time, it is an interesting read. The themes reflect the sensibilities of the era in which it was written, and boundaries of taste are crossed. It is a collection of stories, vignettes really, in which characters find themselves in erotic situations. There is not much 'story' surrounding each situation. Understanding how and why this book was written helps to make sense of this. Definitely not for everyone!
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on 12 November 2017
When I read this when I was 14 or 15 let's just say it kept me warm at night and very very inspired....for self discovery... I still remember the storylines even though I am now 38.
it has may taboo/forbidden fruits in it, taboo makes perfect erotica for me.... Fantasies written down for you to indulge, what is not to like?
I am a French woman by the way! My mother had it in her bookshelves this is how I found it.
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on 22 October 2017
highly recommended if you like Marquis de sade.

Simple but disturbing, bizarre sometimes. One of those books which makes you feel bad.

If you like weird reading, this book is for you
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on 18 February 2015
Porn, when written as well as these short stories, is a legitimate, literary genre. They have withstood the passing of time with wit, elegance and style and remain properly suggestive - as all good erotica should.
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on 31 January 2017
Was one of a list offered regarding Feminism Studies.

Heavier going than I anticipated. Some of the content shocking, but not as shocking as the intellectual insult that this was ever called "erotica" when it's simply dressed up smut. Polished smut/porn is still smut. Not erotica.
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on 11 July 2016
Amazing writer
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on 21 November 2012
By page 2 of this book you're well into steamy sex; no literary foreplay here other than a fascinating brief introduction about how the book came to be written for a "collector". I've not read 50 Shades of Grey and wonder what the fuss is about but I did manage the first 40 pages of a copy left lying around and frankly not a lot happened. You can't say that for Anais Nin's romp through all manner of sexual adventures reduced into action packed vignettes of straight, gay, bi-, oral, anal, group and more. I almost got the feeling that she had a tick list of what hadn't been included - "oh yes, necrophilia - haven't done that yet, lets get a voluptuous fresh corpse dragged out of the harbour". There is a story thread of sorts running through the book. The time setting is in what sounds like the early 1900s with many layers of petticoats requiring removal and visits to whorehouses in Paris where syphilis and pregnancy are occupational hazards. But the question is not "what happens next?" but "how?" and "with whom?".

In today's culture more serious questions arise such as the difference, if any, between erotica and pornography,issues of misogyny, exploitation and child abuse - when a sexual romp between a man and his two hitherto estranged teenage daughters - makes one wonder how acceptable this genre is today.
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on 23 January 2017
I found this book really disturbing and was forced to give up on it after three stories. The three (non sequential) stories I read covered incest, rape and paedophillia. I understand that erotica has a role to challenge our understanding of sexual norms, but this was a challenge too far for me!
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on 12 November 2011
This is one of the worst books that I have ever read. Nin is a good writer, I'll give her that, but any well adjusted individual will find the themes unacceptable in this day and age. The first short story for example is the tale of a man who molests little girls, rapes his own daughters and turns them into sex slaves (Fritzl anyone?) then tries to abuse his son. There are later tales of genital mutilation, incestuous sex (a girl goes skinny dipping she thinks with another girl, then discovers it's her younger brother who rapes her but she continues to have sex with him), gang rape by teenage boys etc. I didn't find anything enjoyable or sexy. I find it quite horrific that people glorify this as sexy. I would suggest that they should perhaps go for some therapy or turn themselves into the police instead. I dislike having to give it any stars at all.
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