Read Story of O by Pauline Réage Käthe Mazur Online


The Story of O relates the progressive willful debasement of a young and beautiful Parisian fashion photographer, O, who wants nothing more than to be a slave to her lover, René. The test is severe—sexual in method, psychological in substance… The artistic interest here has precisely to do with the use not only of erotic materials but also erotic methods, the deliberate stThe Story of O relates the progressive willful debasement of a young and beautiful Parisian fashion photographer, O, who wants nothing more than to be a slave to her lover, René. The test is severe—sexual in method, psychological in substance… The artistic interest here has precisely to do with the use not only of erotic materials but also erotic methods, the deliberate stimulation of the reader as a part of and means to a total, authentic literary experience.—Eliot Fremont-Smith, The New York Times...

Title : Story of O
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781452639055
Format Type : Audio CD
Number of Pages : 305 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Story of O Reviews

  • karen
    2019-05-26 03:33

    i am not going to write a serious review of this book. if you want to talk about why bondage erotica is bad for women or how negation porn makes its readers complicit in the victimization of women halfway across the globe or to sip tea and talk about depersonalization or dehumanization or anything even remotely intelligent - more power to you, but this book bored me so much i don't even care to elevate it or grant it any sort of intellectual discussion. i am really only interested in talking about why this book is boring.i have said it before on here, but it bears repeating: despite my recent fascination with monster erotica, i personally find reading about sex boring. but even more boring than reading about sex? reading about non-sex. which is basically what this book is. despite the lingering on the violence and the restraining, piercing, branding, whipping, the sex act itself is glossed over to the extent that at one point o has taken on several lovers, to completion, in the span of three sentences.for example, the last line in the book:it was only after daybreak, after all the dancers had left, that sir stephen and the commander, awakening natalie who was asleep at o's feet, helped o to her feet, led her to the middle of the courtyard, unfastened her chain and removed her mask and, laying her back upon a table, possessed her one after the other.penthouse letters, that is not.and it's all like that. but sir stephen's hands pried open her loins, forced the buttocks' portal, retreated, took her again, caressed her until she moaned.obviously, this is intended to be a sadean experiment in impersonal and objectified sex, but more detail is given in this book to the construction of dresses than to the sex act. and that's fine, like i said, i have no regrets at not reading about "glistening honey-pots" or "man-roots."but at least that would have gotten a giggle out of me. and why am i the only one reading lactation porn and wondering who is supposed to clean up after it? and reading this and completely focusing on the hygiene?? the fact that her lover will not permit her to wear underwear. fine. but then he will also not let her sit upon her dress, so no matter where she is: on a bar stool, at a restaurant, in the backseat of a public conveyance, she is always bare-assed, and bare-"bellied" directly on the seats.and that grossed me out more than any of the more violent tearing and whipping and piercing she you know where that barstool has been? then don't go rubbing your open bits about on it!seriously. why would your lover/master want you to get scabies? it is contagious!and don't go bloodying up the good towels after a rough session of's so nasty. this is what i took from story of o and i apologize, but i have my hang-ups same as anyone, and i just feel like a place like roissy, with all those bodily fluids squirting everywhere and all the blood all over the floor and how often do they clean those riding crops??? is all i could think is interesting that the bodice rippers chose this book to read during the height of fifty shades of gray mania. here are some pictures from the fifty shades event at my store:seriously, do you see how many people are there? insanity. i wasn't able to get a good photo of the author, just the woman interviewing her, but she was there, i you can see, female-penned BDSM erotica is insanely popular.(is that redundant??is there BDSM that is just casual and unerotic? yes! and it is this book!) and i get why this book (story of o, i do not yet understand the shades phenomenon)is a BIG DEAL because at the time, it was unprecedented that a woman would have written such a violent and debasing novel. but i read it now and i can't help but think, "is that all??"incidentally,this fifty shades phenomenon is out of hand. little old ladies reading bondage porn has got to be one of the signs of the end times. but even fifty shades is having troubles: of course i am totally anti-censorship, but if that book is as dull as this one, who's to say that they aren't dodging a bullet here by not being allowed to read it.full disclosure: i read a shitty translation. i am sure manny will come out and say it is better in its original language, and of that i have no doubt. but i honestly don't feel that i would have enjoyed it any better in french, even if my fluency in that language had not been severely compromised by years of disuse.i read this first when i was in high school, when i thought that subversive literature would be cool. i read some de sade and i read story of the eye, and i read this, and honestly, it just bored the crap out of me. but i thought i still had my copy lying around. turns out, i did not. and i wasn't going to buy a new copy when the bodicers chose this book because i figured, quite rightly, that i wouldn't enjoy it any more the second time around than i had on the first. i read the introduction of the hard copy on my break at work, and i ended up borrowing a nook so's i could read it without having to shell out the whopping 8 bucks for it. and the introduction is worth reading, if you are interested in the history of its translation:there exists an earlier translation of o, made in paris several years ago. i trust i shall not be accused of a corresponding lack of generosity if i say (and i am not the first, and far from the only one, to say it) that this earlier version is less a translation than an adaptation. it reads somehow as though the adapter-translator were in fact embarrassed by the work: certain parts are glossed over; whole descriptions, nonexistent in the original, are written in; and, indeed, much of the book is paraphrased rather than translated directly. as one who had read the work in french when it first appeared, and admired not only its contents but the extreme felicity of the style, what troubled me mostly about the earlier english version was its seeming disdain for this obvious style. subsequently, i learned this translator was a man, and it seemed to me that this fact alone sufficed to explain both the embarrassment - male embarrassment manifest in his version, and also why pauline reage had gone out of her way to comment favorably on mine: story of o, written by a woman, demands a woman translator, one who will humble herself before the work and be satisfied simply to render it, as faithfully as possible, without interpretation or unwanted elaboration. faced with a work such as o, male pride, male superiority - however liberal the male, however much he may try to suppress them - will, i am certain, somehow, i don't know about all that, but i do know that the translation i read was atrocious. it was boring. and at one point, it cuts off abruptly, and i was like "weird," so i went to the hard copy only to find that eleven "pages" were missing in the electronic version! what the hell? as grateful as i am that lulu press exists, because they gave semen recipes to the world, i do not think they have the best copyeditors.not only were the ELEVEN pages missing, but there were roughly a million typos, which are terribly distracting when you are trying to focus on the buttsecks. and those pages were the whole part about her and jacqueline and the command sir stephen gives o regarding jacqueline, and is kind of a big deal, plot-wise, and is followed by one of the only interesting sections in the book, where she contemplates her role in sir stephen's orbit, and speculates upon his intent and his feelings blah blah. but stephen is such a douche ,who cares, right?but so why am i not going to go back and read the "better" translation? because that sums it up: i really don't care. i just wanted to let everyone know that if you are interested in reading this book, DO NOT read the version on the nook or kindle or the POD lulu press one. because from what i can tell, it definitely is just an adaptation, and since you probably aren't going to go learning french just to read this book, if you are going to read it, READ IT.AND OH MY GOD!!!i wrote all that part yesterday, but i didn't post it because i wanted to do a side-by-side comparison of the text on the nook and the text in the hard copy, so i had to wait until i was at work to take notes and everything and I WAS WRONG! they are exactly the same. so this is not just an adaptation-mistranslation. this is the one that is supposed to be "good". that reage praised.holy hell.this ruins my whole review, but i do not care enough to rewrite it and this may well be my worst review ever, but i don't even care because this book bored the shit out of me TWICE and that should not be more personal news, (because the rest of this review has been such intensive impersonal lit-crit, i know...)i read this on the new glow-y nook. which is pretty cool. were i ever to buy a device for myself, i would probably buy the glow-y one because i like to read while i am walking and it is much easier to read on a nook while walking than a book because you can do it all one-handed (LGM) but the problem i was having was with night-walking, and the light-em-up feature solves all of that. i can also late-night read without the lights on. i want to read something scarrrry on it, all alone in the dark, and see what happens.SPOOKY!!even maggie approves:and, no - barnes and noble is not making me say this. i actually like this thing. and if i could get one for free and get all my books on it for free like i do when i borrow one, my life would be awesome. as is, it is just mediocre. like this review. no - this review sucks. like the book.

  • Petra X
    2019-06-17 07:17

    The original ending of this book was suppressed because it supposedly objectified women. However, I think the book is very empowering for women. It makes very clear the difference between being submissive as a person and being submissive as a sexual preference. O is a successful career woman who gets her freak on as a sexual slave. We are all hedonists at heart! The prudish, Protestant roots of society plus the pc attitudes for which feminism is responsible in part, make this a very shocking book now. But not as much as in the past for its pornographic content,no now it is seen as the choices its protagonist makes that are shocking. I would recommend the book to loads of people if only because it's fabulously well-written, a real literary classic and of course, it's hot, really hot. How many classics can you say are that?

  • Casey Wilson
    2019-06-18 03:03

    Since my child is currently one of my 2 friends, I will refrain from writing a real review of this book. Manon, when you're living far far away and are much older you should check this out. And when you do, please don't tell me about it.

  • Emily May
    2019-06-24 02:08

    I never had any intention of reading Story of O until I was recently asked to review it. I knew I wouldn't like it, that it is not the kind of erotica I usually waste my Sunday afternoons with, so rather than purchasing the whole thing, I instead decided to read the Amazon Kindle sample. That, I'm afraid, was way more than enough. I'm not sure whether the sample starts at the beginning of the story or not, the first chapter felt a little out of place, but then none of what I read really followed the format of a regular novel.The sample starts as it means to go on: "Get in," he says. She gets in.I laughed at this. Perhaps I shouldn't have. Perhaps I shouldn't laugh at the fact that O allows herself to be objectified and used sexually, perhaps I should pity her for feeling that it's okay to be ordered around in this way. Oh well, I'm just a firm believer that if someone tells you to jump off a cliff and you jump off said cliff, then it's your fault for being a cliff-jumping moron. Just sayin'...Anyway, as far as your regular run-of-the-mill sex goes, there's hardly any description. It's all entering and plunging and then it's all over. The whipping, however, gets a lot more attention than the sex does, the whole sample doesn't actually feel like erotica unless you're the kind to masturbate while Crimewatch is on. This is a story of violence, not sex. Because sex is a two (or more) way thing regardless of whether it is BDSM or straight-up (lol, pun!) vanilla. If all the participants aren't invested in the sexual activities and aren't getting pleasure out of it then it isn't sex, it's rape.Okay, okay, before I get carried away with that idea, it's kinda important to point out that it wasn't clear as to whether O was giving consent to what the people were doing to her. She screams and she cries, which to me is something negative, but I'm no expert on how people behave during this kind of sexual encounter. We are not treated to O's thoughts, only her actions and the actions of the people around her. She doesn't express regret, sadness or even pain inwardly. The only thing that is clear to me (and makes me feel sick) is that the men who are doing all this stuff to her are not concerned with her pleasure. Which, as I said in my review of Fifty Shades of Grey, is important because all parties are supposed to get something out of it. In BDSM relationships, submission is something that a person chooses to do and wants to do because they enjoy what it gives them and what it gives the dom. It is not forced out of someone. The psychological aspect of BDSM is a lot like how it is (or should be) with regular sex. You give pleasure, you get pleasure. However:"If you do tie her up from time to time, or whip her just a little, and she begins to like it, that's no good either. You have to get past the pleasure stage, until you reach the stage of tears."These men are evidently trying to break O. They rejoice when she is in pain, when she is distressed, and when she screams or cries. For me, trying to hurt someone for the sake of hurting them - not to give them what they want - is no different from rape. It is sick. This is sick:The gag stifles all screams and eliminates all but the most violent moans, while allowing tears to flow without restraint. There was no question of using it that night. On the contrary, they wanted to hear her scream; and the sooner the better.You could argue with me that O actually wants all of this to happen, so I have no point. We are not told what O is thinking, she never speaks to say whether she wants it or not, but I cannot be the only one thinking that this is not the sign of a woman enjoying herself:Then one of the men, holding her with both hands on her hips, plunged into her belly. He yielded to a second. The third wanted to force his way into the narrower passage and, driving hard, made her scream. When he let her go, sobbing and befouled by tears beneath her blindfold, she slipped to the floor, only to feel someone's knees against her face, and she realized that her mouth was not to be spared.Though, personally, I think her mouth is the least of O's problems if he's shagging her belly. What's that all about? (view spoiler)[For you clever dicks out there, I'd just like to point out that yes, I do realise that he is actually talking about her vagina.(hide spoiler)]So, has Story of O changed my opinion about BDSM erotica and whether it is dehumanizing/sexist/etc.? Nope. But I'm learning more and more that people automatically categorize books that combine pain and sex as BDSM, even though they're not, or it's questionable. In BDSM, both the dom and the sub have got to want what's happening, or else it's simply abuse. Though O is hard to understand, there are about twenty quotes from the sample alone that suggest she isn't enjoying being tied up and hurt. And that's why this story is not erotic, but merely fucked up.

  • Manny
    2019-06-12 03:27

    The most useful piece of advice on literary criticism that I've ever come across is Nabokov's dictum to identify with the author, not the characters. This book is a perfect example. If you make the mistake of identifying with O, it's all a bit bewildering. Why exactly is she interested in being blindfolded, tied up, whipped, and fucked from all angles by a bunch of people she doesn't even know? It seems bizarre and rather distasteful.The rest of this review is available elsewhere (the location cannot be given for Goodreads policy reasons)

  • Jennifer
    2019-06-04 01:24

    At first most people read this as erotica. However I read it for a psychology class. There is a much deeper story if you read it from a different perspective. Sad, definitely. This woman gives up everything. I don't mean everything in the passive way we use it today. I mean right down to her voice. She only speaks a few times, I can count the number of times on one hand. She gives away her core, her voice and her soul. Just to be loved. And what a silent psychological break she makes to remain a body but nothing more than a toy. The things some women do longing to be loved. In the end there is no more to give when all is taken. What is left?

  • Kim
    2019-06-17 05:32

    This book must have been really something when it first came out, but to me, this was just another one of those unintentionally funny chick flicks. I do realize I completely missed the point of this book, because it just completely flew by me.I won't go into detail too much but the story begins when O and her lover Rene (I use an Allo Allo! accent here) are in the backseat of a taxi, and O is instructed to take her underwear etc off, walk into a building and let herself be abused and tortured, no questions asked. And she'll learn to love it. Why? Because Rene keeps telling her he loves her so much. Because she wants to do whatever he wants her to do. Maybe it's because I'm unable to see myself in this position, or to be more accurate, these positions, but I really don't see the point of everything that happens to O. If anybody ever suggested doing something that's even remotely in the general direction of the stuff they make her do, to me, I will laugh, to see if they are serious, and if it turns out they are, I will go batshit on their ass. And I do mean that in the literal sense. Because it's the woman who keeps getting degraded, not the man. See how he likes it.Chains, whips (a riding crop for christ's sake), multiple men at multiple entrances (real friends come in through the back door!), wearing a ring that means you'll have to do it with every guy who knows what that ring means, wearing stuff that expands certain holes, clothes designed for 'easy access' and last but not least: never cross your legs and always part your lips.Try that last one. I'm serious. Try looking hot and ready by doing that. And I don't just mean for like a few minutes, anybody can make that pose look hot. But try it everywhere and all the time. You'll look like an ill mannered peasant with a saliva problem after 20 minutes.After a while it even stopped being funny and it just got boring. I'm sure there is a purpose for this book. Possibly something of the door stopper variety.

  • Ninoska Goris
    2019-06-25 07:19

    English - EspañolOMG what did I just read? This is horrible and tremendously boring, every time I started reading my eyes closed.It did not seem erotic, but totally abusive to those who not only accept it, but also yearn for it, demonstrating that it must be a person with serious psychological problems and zero self-esteem.O, the protagonist, a beautiful Parisian fashion photographer, has Rene as a lover. As he had already told her that he wanted to prostitute her, it does not take her by surprise when he takes her to Roissy where she is treated as a sex slave, beaten and all included. She leaves there with a ring that allows to possess her to every man who knows what it means. Rene, for whom she would do anything because she loves him with madness and without whom she can not live, lends her to a friend and tells her that he is now her new master. Sir Stephen is more possessive and depraved than Rene and only takes her by where men and women have in common. After lending her, forcing her to be with women and marking her permanently in every possible way, then he abandons her."O was happy that Rene had had her whipped and had prostituted her, because her impassioned submission would furnish her lover with the proof that she belonged to him, ..."I know that this book has mixed reviews. I hated it, but every head is a world and my opinion should be taken as just that, my very personal opinion.✨✨✨OMG que acabo de leer? Esto es horrible y tremendamente aburrido, cada vez que comenzaba a leer se me cerraban los ojos. No me pareció erotico, sino totalmente abusivo con quien no solo lo acepta, sino que además lo anhela, demostrando que debe ser una persona con graves problemas psicológicos y cero autoestima. O, la protagonista, una hermosa parisina fotógrafa de modas, tiene a Rene como amante. Como ya le había dicho que quería prostituirla no le toma por sorpresa cuando la lleva a Roissy donde es tratada como una esclava sexual, golpes y todo incluido. Sale de allí con un anillo que le permite poseerla a todo hombre que sepa lo que significa. Rene, por el que haría cualquier cosa porque lo ama con locura y sin quien no puede vivir, la presta a un amigo y le dice que ese es ahora su nuevo amo. Sir Stephen es más posesivo y depravado que Rene y solo la toma por donde hombres y mujeres tienen en común. Después de prestarla, obligarla a estar con mujeres y de marcarla permanentemente de todas las formas posible, entonces la abandona. Sé que este libro tiene críticas encontradas. Yo lo odié, pero cada cabeza es un mundo y mi opinión debe tomarse como solo eso, mi opinión muy personal.

  • Paul Bryant
    2019-06-06 08:05

    I did read this some years ago so honesty compels me to list it here. For those of you who haven't yet had the pleasure, I can save you some time. All you need are these few verses from Tom Lehrer - the book itself is much less amusing. I quote them here because it's just possible some of you will not know this lovely ballad.I ache for the touch of your lips, dear, But much more for the touch of your whips, dear. You can raise welts like nobody elts, As we dance to the masochism tango. Say our love be a flame, not an ember, Say it's me that you want to dismember. Blacken my eye, Set fire to my tie, As we dance to the masochism tango. Your eyes cast a spell that bewitches The last time I needed twenty stitches To sew up the gash That you made with your lash, As we danced to the masochism tango. Bash in my brain, And make me scream with pain, Then kick me once again, And say we'll never part. Take your cigarette from it's holder, And burn your initials in my shoulder. Fracture my spine, And swear that you're mine, As we dance to the masochism tango

  • Anna
    2019-05-27 08:12

    Όχι που θα άφηνα την κατηγορία erotica να μου ξεφύγει!!! Η ιστορία της Ο είναι ένα βιβλίο μιας γαλλίδας δημοσιογράφου, που το έγραψε μετά από ένα στοίχημα με τον εραστή της ότι μια γυναίκα μπορεί να γράψει μια ιστορία επιπέδου Μαρκήσιου Ντε Σαντ (και αυτός της το προλογίζει). Μέχρι σχεδόν το τέλος της ζωής της δεν είχε παραδεχτεί ότι αυτή ήταν η συγγραφέας του, και είναι το δεύτερο – λένε – πιο διαδεδομένο γαλλικό βιβλίο σε πωλήσεις μετά το Μικρό πρίγκηπα, δηλαδή πούλησε σαν τρελό (τα γαλλάκια την είχαν τη φήμη πάντως από το Μεσαίωνα ακόμα). Επίσης, τη συγκεκριμένη έκδοση από το Μεταίχμιο τη βρήκα προσφορά 3 € στον Ιανό. Το βιβλίο είναι μικρό και διαβάζεται πολύ γρήγορα. Η Ο είναι μια γυναίκα που κάνει πολλά τα οποία ο κοινός νους θα χαρακτήριζε «αρρωστημένα», προκειμένου να την αγαπάει περισσότερο ο εραστής της, μέσα στα οποία περιλαμβάνεται μεταξύ άλλων να συνευρίσκεται με άλλους άντρες μπροστά του, με κάθε τρόπο που αυτοί επιθυμούν. Πρέπει να υπακούει στις διαταγές τους, σαν ιδιοκτησία τους, και δεν έχει δικαίωμα να αρνηθεί ή να φέρει αντίρρηση. Τα μαστίγια, τα βασανιστήρια, τα σκοινιά και τα σημάδια στο σώμα είναι επίσης μέσα στο καθημερινό πρόγραμμα. Μάλιστα, εκπαιδεύτηκε καταλλήλως από τα ανάλογα «κέντρα» με τους πιο εξειδικευμένους «δασκάλους». Δεν θα καθίσω να αναλύσω τις ιδιοσυγκρασίες των πρωταγωνιστών και να αναρωτηθώ για το κατά πόσο το γυναικείο φύλο φαίνεται κατώτερο με όσα κάνει η Ο – μην ξεχνάτε όμως πως το έχει γράψει γυναίκα – ή περί συναισθημάτων και κινήτρων, στην τελική μια σεξουαλική ιστορία είναι, διαβάστε την και απολαύστε την, ή μην τη διαβάζετε. Σίγουρα θα σοκάρει όσους δεν έχουν προσωπική επαφή με το BDSM, είτε με θετικό (!) είτε με αρνητικό τρόπο. Εντύπωση πάντως μου έκανε η γλώσσα, λόγος για τον οποίο βάζω τουλάχιστον ένα αστεράκι παραπάνω στη βαθμολογία μου: παρόλο που περιγράφει hardcore ερωτικές σκηνές, δεν χρησιμοποιείται ούτε μία «υβριστική» ή «χυδαία» λέξη: απεναντίας, το λεξιλόγιο είναι υπερβολικά κομψό και φιλοτεχνημένο σαν πραγματικό έργο τέχνης. Σκοπός της συγγραφέα, λοιπόν, δεν ήταν να προκαλέσει με φτηνούς τρόπους, αλλά να πει μια ιστορία, κάπως διαφορετική. Στην τελική, μην ξεχνάτε ότι το έγραψε για να αποδείξει ότι μπορεί!Από την άλλη θα σας έλεγα ότι αυτά τα σαδομαζοχιστικά δεν είναι ακριβώς το στυλ μου, αλλά αμέσως μετά σκέφτηκα ότι είμαι ελεύθερη επαγγελματίας στη σύγχρονη Ελλάδα, άρα ποιον πάω να κοροϊδέψω; Αλήθεια πάντως, είναι δυνατόν κάποιοι άνθρωποι να σκέφτονται διαρκώς το σεξ σε όλη τη διάρκεια της μέρας τους; Ούτε ένα ΙΚΑ, έναν ΕΝΦΙΑ ή το πότε σου κόβει το ρεύμα η ΔΕΗ ρε αδερφέ… Υπομένουν εκεί με το μαστίγιο αντί να προσπαθούν να βγάλουν άκρη με τον ΟΑΕΕ; (Τουλάχιστον η Ο γούσταρε, δεν νομίζω κανένα νοσηρό μυαλό να γουστάρει με τη δημόσια διοίκηση… Μόλις εν τω μεταξύ συνειδητοποίησα ότι το διάβασα στις δυο τελευταίες μέρες του μήνα, εκεί που μαζεύουμε λεφτά για να πληρώσουμε… τα σχόλια δικά σας!!!!!)

  • Lisa
    2019-06-24 05:10

    While this was one of the most original and mind blowing books I've ever read (and the history behind it is fascinating as well), it is definitely not for everyone, especially the sexually squeamish and the faint of heart. It deals with a sadomasochistic relationship in early 20th century France. It feels very reminiscent of Marquis de Sade's type of literary eroticism, but is a much easier read in terms of language and prose. This book stayed with me for months after I read it leaving me with that type of sadness you feel when you know it may take years to find another book that is so intense, mind opening, and truly original.

  • Bonnie
    2019-06-25 09:16

    This story was written in 1954... I cannot even begin to imagine the outrage this novel must have caused. Taken at face value it’s a strange, odd, and confusing tale of female submission. The main character, known as O, is brought to the château of Roissy where she is taught to be constantly ‘available’ to the men who belong to that ‘elite group’. Like I said, awkward. You’re not given much background story at all so you don’t quite understand the O and why she’s allowing this to happen when she doesn’t even appear to be enjoying this (regardless of the fact that she actually gives her permission frequently for them to do such things to her). After reading more about Anne Desclos (The Story of O being written under the pen name Pauline Réage) the story begins to make a bit more sense. It wasn’t originally intended to be a novel; however, it was written as a series of love letters to her lover Jean Paulhan. Her lover had been a fan of the work of Marquis de Sade and had once said that a woman could not write anything such as that. Taking it as a dare, she set out to accomplish it. So it probably wasn’t meant to make sense, her lover may have been into stuff like that and she was trying to … pacify him. Either way it was quite the difficult read and wasn’t exactly enjoyable.

  • Anasylvia
    2019-06-16 08:11

    So one day your lover takes you to a castle, and on the way he tells you to take your clothes off because you need to make yourself more presentable.Once there, you are blindfolded and stripped of you clothes and made to have sex with a bunch of men you’ve never met before.You a grown woman and fully functioning member of society agree, because your lover wants you to do this for him and you lurve.What follows is you life essentially become a porn site on acid. You are whipped and chained and more men you’ve never met before use your body however they want. But you overjoyed with the pain because your lover is happy and you lurve him.She did not wish to die, but if torture was the price she had to pay to keep her lover’s love then she had to endure it.You may have some doubts about what you’re doing, I mean those whippings kind of hurt right? And you don’t really like not knowing whose doing what to your body, but your lover makes it better by telling you how happy he is, and how much he’s always wanted to take your realtionsip to the next level.For a long time he had wanted to prostitute her, and he was delighted to feel the pleasure he was deriving was even greater than he had hoped, and that it bound him to her all the more, as it bound her to him, all the more so because, through, it she could not help loving whatever derived from him. O listened and trembled with happiness, because he loved her.And so you’re mollified because he’s happy, and his happiness is your joy because you know, you lurve him.Happiness to the both of you really. I was prepared to say that this did shock at some parts and made me squirm, (not that way) in other parts, but overall it was really much ado about nothing. I was going to say that I could understand why this book makes it to the most controversial, or shocking books ever written especially when you consider the era in which it was written, but from a 21st century women’s perspective it really isn’t all that different from the erotica currently sitting on the shelfs of our bookstores. However, after closing the last page of this book, I can’t shake my extremely uncomfortable, and a little angry feelings regarding the characters in this book. For me a book is always about the characters. There have been books where I despised the characters, but still loved the book, but those have been extremely rare. This book’s characters are atrocious. Unlike other erotica I’ve read, (Haven’t read much to be honest) O does not fall into the pattern I’ve observed for females. She is not a naive young woman, she is financially independent, and she has a successful career. I didn’t hate her immediately because her choices were her own and I had to respect that although they weren’t my personal taste, they were hers. As far as I could tell she was not coerced or manipulated. Her only decision making factor was her love for René which did not win points with me, but again her choice. What really made me dislike her was what she later became, and the last lines of the book regarding her fate which I won’t spoil for you. I’m a feminist and that was just too much for me. BDSM as a lifestyle does nothing for me. I read Fifty Shades of Grey and even though I’ve been told that is a terrible representation of the community, I felt like I got the gist of it to know it wasn’t for me. However, if that’s what your into that’s totally cool. What people do in their bedrooms or...dungeons is none of my business. All I care about is that it is safe and consensual. I may want to grumble and bitch about this book, but I do have to admit that the sex in it is consensual. However, I can’t say that all of it was safe, and that bothered me. For example, I know that during BDSM scenes partners always agree on a safe word. Not once was a safe word mentioned in this book, at least not one that I recall, and believe me it there should have been. Word of advice: Do not read HR before reading this. I literally went from reading Kleypas to this, and it was a huge no no. From flowery midnight walks, to midnight floggings. It will give you a whiplash indeed. Overall, not for me. It's not the worst book I've ever come across, but I couldn't find anything I enjoyed in it. Edited Review June 2014

  • Traveller
    2019-06-03 03:18

    I read this quite a while ago, and thought I had already rated it.Anyway, what I still cannot fathom is why a woman would write fiction that so thoroughly dehumanizes women. Even the Marquis doesn't come close,and one could excuse it more from a man. One can only feel sorry for poor Desclos.On the other hand, I'm possibly missing the point, which might be put across more subtly than it was in 9 1/2 weeks, the point being that if you play around too much with, and slide deeper and deeper into the game of S & M, chances are that you will eventually find yourself either a killer, mad, dead, or all of the above; in which case I should probably be giving the piece 5 stars.Which I won't do on accountof it having left me feeling brutalised, violated, and with feelings of despair. Which is probably what was intended, and admittedly it was because it was rather well-written that it managed to achieve this.

  • Paradoxe
    2019-06-24 03:14

    Το καλοκαίρι του 2013 υπήρξε αρκετά δυστοπικό τόσο σε θέμα δουλειάς, το θυμάμαι σαν ένα μόνιμο ιδρώτα με συνεχείς αψιμαχίες για παράλογα πράγματα, με τη ζωή μου όπως την ήξερα ως τότε να έχει καταστραφεί ολοκληρωτικά και με μια ανάγκη να πατήσω τις λέξεις, να σπάσω πράγματα, μια ατελείωτη δίψα για νυχτερινή οδήγηση και για κουβέντες προκειμένου να μη συνομιλώ με τον εαυτό μου. Αυτό το βιβλίο υπήρξε η ηλιαχτίδα μου εκείνη την περίοδο. Θυμάμαι να το διαβάζω αποσπασματικά ανάμεσα στα διαλείμματα απ’ τη δουλειά που γύριζα σε ένα σπίτι που νοίκιασα πιστεύοντας πως ξεκινάει μια νέα σελίδα, η οποία τελικά αποδείχτηκε πλαναίσθηση, άλλες φορές το έβγαζα απ’ τη θήκη της πόρτας του αυτοκινήτου και διάβαζα μόνο μερικές λέξεις. Μου έκανε παρέα και μου δίδαξε κάτι για τις λέξεις, που ως τότε με είχαν υπηρετήσει και πια φαινόταν αδύνατο να τις εκστομίσω ή να τις γράψω και να με ανακουφίζουν ή να με φέρνουν κοντά σε αρκετούς ανθρώπους που δεν υπήρχαν πλέον αλλά που εγώ δεν ήθελα να παραδεχτώ τόσο την ουσία όσο και την εικόνα. Μου δίδαξε πως οι λέξεις μπορούν και επιβάλλουν τη σιωπή, τη συμπαράσταση, την οδύνη μέσα από ηδονιστικά ταπεινωτικά μονοπάτια, άλλοτε με σκληρότητα κι άλλοτε με βελούδινη τραχύτητα και μου ξαναέδωσε την πίστη σ’ αυτές τις λέξεις με έναν όρκο που έδωσα τότε πως θα μείνω στη σιωπή μου για όσα θα μου γίνουν, μέχρι να αναστηθεί ο άλλος μέσα μου.Οι λέξεις είναι. Αυτός είναι ο εναλλακτικός τίτλος του βιβλίου. Είναι ένα όπλο προς τους άλλους και τον εαυτό μας. Είναι δονητής για τους άλλους και τον εαυτό μας. Είναι φάρμακο ή φαρμάκι. Θα είναι τα πάντα και τίποτα ταυτόχρονα.Πρόκειται για ένα μικρό, ελαφρύ, κανιβαλισμό πάνω στο πνεύμα, για την ελευθερία που απαιτείται στο σεξ σε λόγο και σε πράξη, αφορά την απόφαση αν θα αφήσουμε την καύλα να μας τρελάνει εγκλωβισμένοι στα γνωστά και αποδεκτά ή αν θα κάνουμε το βήμα στην εξερεύνηση του εαυτού μας, αυτό το βήμα που απαιτεί να επιβληθούμε ταυτόχρονα στο πνεύμα και στο συναίσθημα, θα τους προκαλέσουμε ασφυξία συνεχόμενη ώσπου οι νέες μας εξερευνήσεις, τα επιτεύγματα στα οποία οδηγηθήκαμε να ολοκληρωθούν και τότε μεμιάς τραβάμε τα χέρια και βλέπουμε την εξισορρόπηση, ή την αντίδραση, την ανάσα ή το μαστίγιο.3.75STARS

  • ♥Xeni♥
    2019-06-13 07:13

    Thank you to my friend to recommend this to me. I can't believe that I hadn't found this book before! I must have stumbled across it somewhere... probably... Whilst reading, I had to keep two things in mind. First and foremost that this was a classic. Secondly, that it was French. The fact that it's a classic bit of literature is pretty relevant. Mostly because when a book like this was written in earlier times, it was incredibly scandalous. Which meant that it would be banned and all other such horrible things would occur. I tend to consider the Marquis de Sade's works to also be in this vein. On that note, I definitely had to keep in mind that this was a French book. I am not drawn to French literature or culture and indont care much for France, but very often when I have picked up a novel by a French author, I have loved it. It amazes me anew each time. Also, I had to keep in mind that France was always a bit more open and less prudish when it came to sexuality. Read this book pretty much in 2.5 sittings. It was that... Interesting. I won't say 'good' because it is too unique for such an average word. The writing style was both dry and yet very detailed. Often things were left to the readers imagination, while one sentence later mundane events would be described in elaborate detail. This swinging between very mundane details and superficial coverage of the interesting parts *wink wink* probably also stems from the fact that it was written in a different era. But, I kept reminding myself that this is all relevant to the story and plowed ahead.The part I always find most interesting in books that deal with the BDSM lifestyle is the psychological aspect. I found myself wishing for more details of O's mind. Often she would react in a situation in such a way that I felt I didn't really know her. And in that way this was less a story about O and more a fictionalized work of what happened to this character. The aloofness of the character at most times bespoke of her actual treatment, I suppose. My favorite quote from the book: But she had finally come to accept as an undeniable and important verity, this constant and contradictory jumble of her emotions: she liked the idea of torture, but when she was being tortured herself she would have betrayed the whole world to escape it, and yet when it was over she was happy to have gone through it, happier still if it had been especially cruel and prolonged.This quote really speaks to me on a level of the human brain. If O was real, she would certainly be a fascinating character to interview. Other books that I figured are tied up with this one based on plot and characters and setting : -----I wrote this review in a tired mess... apologies for any non coherent thought processes that went on!

  • Heleri
    2019-06-13 03:11

    This is not about sex. It is about smooth prose that draws lines around your ankles which drag you to the woods. As sombre as that is, you get a feeling the trees are really props and somewhere there's a smoke machine. But you forget, hopefully.You are O. You will think about love, ego, surrender, abandonment, jealousy, passion. Pain - not so much. Fear - not so much for the riding crop but of the self. You will stagger in your mules to the next leather couch in fear, lifting up your skirt, wondering what if, does he, do I. Or you don't, if you glimpse the prompter. In the end you are content - if you are O. The story of O could be taken as an existentialist musing and likely many a psychoanalyst has gone over the book with great excitement. Yet I find it amusing that the book was written to please a BDSM fanatic of a lover instead. In which case - can we speak of female fantasy, pleasing the lover or a harsh allegory and commentary on the female situation at the time?It is about freedom more than anything else, and O walks a catalytic or cathartic road. Therefore I find it both titillating and upsetting that (in this version) the last chapture of the book was omitted while a comment was added about an alternative ending. I feel the chapter (which has been printed as a separate book, if I understood correctly) would have given it a completion that the previous chapter was building up to.The erotica is rather "female" in the sense that you get vivid imagery dragged out of the dungeons of your imagination that is aroused from the air of the situations. No Roissy maid shall present you racy images on a silver platter.All in all, well written and definitely well translated (translation has gained author's approval). Regardless of mentioned and unmentioned structure/plot annoyances I would recommend it for avid readers who enjoy French literature and who are not faint of heart.

  • Anders
    2019-06-23 07:25

    From the Guardian 4 May 1998:Dominique Aury, who has died aged 90, was for half a century a pillar of the French establishment. Yet she will be remembered less for her influence on modern French literature than as the key to one of the most celebrated literary mysteries of hte 20th century.---Yet in 1994, she admitted that to ... should be added one further title: the Histoire d'O, which caused a sensation when it appeared in 1954. ... The detail is graphic ...The book was banned and in the furore authorship was attributed to Raymond Queneau, André Malraux, Peyre de Mandariagues, even [Aury's partner Jean] Paulhan himself, who, in his preface, described it as the "most ardent love [email protected] he had ever read. Written with considerable style and intelligence, the Histoire d'O was admired by judges as different as Georges Bataille and Graham Greene and was translated into many languages. ... It was only in 1994, in an interview with the New Yorker, that Aury explained why and how she had written one of the century's erotic classics.Sensing that Paulhan was falling out of love, and being no longer young and attractive, she responded by taking up his artistic challenge by writing the pornographic novel he believed no woman could write. Paulhan was won over by her strange love-letter and their liason continued until his death in 1968.---David Coward

  • Gela
    2019-06-20 06:23

    I just finished reading The Story of O,while I find that life style bizarre,I also see its lure. Hear me out, without the many partners, beating,piercing and branding it has it's erotic appeal, if not you nor I would have ever picked it up to read in the first place. Everyone wants to be desired, maybe not at the same level as O. But then again I believe certain events that may have taken in her life is why she became this way. Not saying it's good or bad,may not for be for me but even though one may not be into BDSM what woman doesn't want at time to be man handle or a take change man? Then there's the narrow mindset of people who think sex is just to reproduce only...and only one way. BORING!I don't know exactly that I find this novel as being great but rather captivating in the sense that once you read it your curiosity is peeked or you find yourself feeling more sensual. Very Parisian for sure, as for the French, as I was told, "love to be loved, and love to make love." Love has different meaning for different people. Some love to be desired as I believe O did. I believe her Obsession was to be controlled to owned.That others gratification was her salvation. I don't believe O could love anyone or know love without being sexual. I felt sorry for O but in some sense she wasn't mentally right. I believe she must have been mentally or physically abused as a child to accept all that. She was looking for love the wrong way some girls have done by jumping into bed with men far to soon in hopes of not being discarded. The book leaves you feeling emotionally conflicted which is why I say it's worth reading. (If you're an adult!)

  • carol
    2019-06-26 07:33

    I think this has become a classic in the BDSM genre and just about everything has been said about it. This is my second reading. I first read it some years ago and O's self serving masochism and debasement horrified me then. Rene didn't care for her in any emotional sense yet that is what she desperately sought. Rene uses O to titillate and satisfy his sadistic appetite as well as passing her on to others for further humiliation and pain. O can't say no..becomes in need of whatever pain they administer in my opinion purely to be noticed and seeking an emotional as well as physical need to her abusers. I don't see this as a safe, sane even knowingly consensual relationship...there is no relationship except in her hope, her mind. Her debasement and abuse as a submissive is absolute. I didn't like it, yet it drew me to read it the first time, and I reread it to see if i would have a change of opinion. Yet her type of submissive slavery and debasement to another human with nothing reciprocated emotionally just confirmed my first opinion, and the intervening years make me dislike her subservient character less and Rene and friends even less.It is still reasonably well written, and gives as is, regardless of human niceties and conventions. I would like to say two star for lack of pleasure it gave me personally and the horror of her situation, which saddened me greatly...yet five star for presentation of a sadomasochistic couples relationship if this example could be said to be such, not healthy and written with no holds barred. Therefore, averaged to border 3/4 star.

  • Antonomasia
    2019-06-22 03:05

    A sexual fantasy written entirely in an in-universe style.So many people on this site don't review it that way, or even take that as one of the possibilities. Almost makes me despair (yet again) at the epidemic of concrete thinking about literature among – albeit not limited to - angry young things. On the other hand, I was in my thirties by the time broadband porn was a significant phenomenon, and I didn't even see online posts by BDSM lifestylers until some time after I'd finished university - so to those who grew up later, maybe it does seem closer to some reality or perceived expectation. This my umpteenth reading attempt, the first one [anywhere near] finished, and at least the third copy of the book since I was an undergraduate, others having been ditched from time to time. (I do like this old plain black cover, so redolent of something forbidden, of volumes once sold under the counter - now replaced with a feather and 50 Shades brand extension.) The story is just not the sort of thing I get off on in a big way, though there are odd paragraphs, phrases and words which have a frisson. The writing is excellent by the standards of erotica, yet I was surprised how frequently I was bored by the S/M and sexual content - even found it ridiculous, in the way some sexual ideas can seem in the wrong mood - and was just reading the book to finally have-read it. I was surprised how many times O was asked if she was sure, if she consented - so many comments about the book say she never is: but these conversations often take place separately from anything that might consitute a scene in the SM sense. Overall, it was more interesting to think about the novel as a phenomenon, about some of the less frequently mentioned character relationships, and to imagine the story specifically in 1950s France (there are details of dress and manners, but atmosphere augmented by reading the last 2/3 the same day as a book on 60s yé-yé). Whilst a few of the practices would be regarded as extreme in most circles, (e.g. (view spoiler)[the piercings, tearing; plenty of accounts of gangbangs are probably fantasy (hide spoiler)]; I also suspect 24/7 is rare in reality, and that those people are disproportionately vocal online) yet there are ideas and motifs in the book which are commonplace among M/f kinks people mention - archetypal BDSM as it were. It would be interesting, but almost impossible given the lapse of time since its British publication in 1970, to work out the extent to which Story of O influenced desires and practices in the kink scene; I suspect it had a role over and above reflecting some people's pre-existing predilections.Years before 50SOG, The Story of O was the most widely recommended erotic novel; it would be mentioned as such on forums which were rather prudish when someone asked a question about their RL, vanilla, sex life. Yet this title, was, somehow, accepted as sort of normal. That didn't compute on the earliest occasions I started to read it: now it seems perfectly obvious. There are ideas people get off on in their heads when there are no lasting consequences, but which they wouldn't want to actually do, things which would be highly inconvenient, excessively injurious or just highly annoying in reality; there are some boundaries you know you wouldn't want to push. That's the case even for plenty of those who approach sex like an extreme sport, although perhaps some people take a while to get their heads round that. I remember it once seemed to me like a prudish, pre-sexual revolution idea not to expect, eventually, to do things you liked the idea of that weren't physically impossible or clearly illegal. There are a surprising number of occasions, particularly in the first half or so, when O is ashamed of standard (vanilla) sexual desires – a reminder that the book dates from the 1950s, and which links it with the concept of submissive sexuality as stemming from a person needing to feel [consensually] forced because of the moral and religious strictures they were used to. I'm not trying to imply that's all submission is; for plenty of people it's not. But this ties into the curious acceptability of the book I'd noticed years ago among people who seemed otherwise a bit repressed.Some GR reviewers emphasise the idea of O losing herself for the sake of love; that topic is covered intentionally, and well, in a BDSM story by Midori, entitled 'Love', in the collection Master Han's Daughter. Whereas Story of O was reportedly written because the author wanted to prove a woman could write as well in the same vein as de Sade. Hearing that Jean Paulhan - writer of the seemingly superfluous and embarrassingly old-fashioned essay found in the back of the book (he assumes all women are actually submissive underneath, and brings in material about chattel slavery in the Caribbean) - was the author's lover, made the dynamic contained within the book fascinating. So Réage/ Aubry/Desclos had such fantasies, but would not go so far as to enact most of them, and he was a sadist / dominant who apparently wanted more, whom she feared losing - and the writing was her answer to the love dilemma of wanting him but not wanting to do everything. A couple of things seemed so emotionally accurate, and made me impressed with the way the book faces very not-nice feelings that much erotica, e.g. Black Lace, doesn't. (view spoiler)[O, whose love and lust is influenced by a sense of hierarchy, eventually goes off René because seeing him in thrall to Sir Stephen knocks him off the pedestal she once placed him on. And whilst she doesn't have quite the same modern political concerns, or sense of self, her dilemma of arousal versus integrity rang surprisingly true when her male lover asked O to seduce Jacqueline, a woman she was interested in anyway. Because he wanted to use O to lure Jacqueline into their games, not friendly support in some non-monogamous setup. I'd guess the author had been there... (hide spoiler)]Character names don't help the sense of the ridiculous when reading The Story of O. Many Brits must struggle to imagine a physically attractive 'René'. (I'm sure Croft & Lloyd were aware of the book and chose their character's name intentionally. The blurb quotes from major newspapers and writers including Graham Greene, Harold Pinter and Brian Aldiss - some may care to note they're all men - testify to its being a publicity phenomenon of its own in the 1970s.) Now, imagining Yvette as O could be a lot worse. But vague recall of online Sir Stephens with risible beefcake avatars, never spoken to personally, really doesn't help. The book has well and truly found its way in to popular culture, whilst still outraging and scaring plenty of people as evidenced by the Goodreads page.

  • Sotiris Karaiskos
    2019-06-24 02:04

    Με αφορμή τη σημερινή εορτή είπα να διαβάσω κάτι σχετικό, έτσι για να την πείσω την τιμήσω την ημέρα. Εντάξει, από τη στιγμή που γνωρίζετε το περιεχόμενο αυτού του βιβλίου καταλαβαίνετε ότι αστειεύομαι, στα πλαίσια μιας προσπάθειας παρωδίας της κατάστασης. Η πραγματικότητα, όμως, είναι ότι αυτό είναι η μισή αλήθεια και ότι στην πραγματικότητα με κάποιον τρόπο το βιβλίο έχει σχέση με αυτό που εορτάζεται. Το βιβλίο φυσικά δεν είναι απλά ένα προκλητικό πορνογράφημα, κατάλληλο μόνο για να προκαλέσει κάποιο ερωτικό ερέθισμα. Αντιθέτως είναι κάτι που πιάνει το θέμα του μαζοχισμού από πολλές οπτικές γωνίες. Ένα από αυτά τα ερωτήματα που υπάρχουν και περιφέρονται μέσα στις σελίδες είναι το κατά πόσον η απόλυτη παράδοση που του εαυτού μας στο πρόσωπο που αγαπάμε είναι η απόλυτη απόδειξη της αγάπης. Φυσικά υπάρχουν και ένα σωρό ακόμα που χρειαζόμουν πολύ μεγάλο χώρο για να τα αναλύσω και πιθανότατα δεν είμαι και ο αρμόδιος να το κάνω. Αυτό που έχει σημασία είναι αυτό που είπα και παραπάνω ότι υπάρχουν πολύ περισσότερα πράγματα μέσα από αυτά που φαίνονται με την πρώτη ματιά. Εννοείται ότι αν αποφασίσετε να ασχοληθείτε με αυτό εδώ το βιβλίο το κάνετε με δική σας ευθύνη.

  • Don Rea
    2019-06-12 05:06

    My parents had a pretty hands-off attitude to my compulsive reading, and so in my early adolescence I read a lot of stuff that probably did my developing sexuality no good. Finding this book at a garage sale (I picked it up because I had read of it in /Playboy/, another ungoverned input) and reading it at the age of 13 was likely not to my benefit.Re-reading it as an adult, I found it interesting in many ways that my eighth grade self could not have, such as noticing the exploration of the boundary between will and circumstance. It really is much more than a story of a woman who just gives it up, and repays a thoughtful reading. But it's also good wanking material for a middle schooler lucky enough to have the vocabulary to follow the narrative.

  • *nawaf
    2019-06-12 02:09

    رواية فجّة

  • Eastofoz
    2019-06-09 07:21

    An extremely disturbing piece of erotic literature that will turn your stomach a long time after having finished reading. Very graphic. No romance here. It's a frightening story of creepy, sadistic sexual power. Very difficult to rate. If you like reading this kind of story then you could easily give it a 5. I'd still recommend it just to know that books like this are out there but you have to be in the right frame of mind to read it I think.

  • Brad
    2019-06-17 04:33

    This is the tale of four reactions. The first is to the prose. The second is to the power dynamics. The third is to the erotica. The fourth is to the what the hell is being said. prose -- I have to admit I was pleasantly surprised byPauline Réage's prose. Admittedly, I read (well ...listened to) Story of O in the English translation, so I do have a little fear that my judgment of her prose may actually be a judgment of the translator's prose (further influenced by the impressive vocal performance of Käthe Mazur), but the prose was rather beautiful, and it really had to be considering the subject matter. The descriptions of location, of bodies, of sex acts, and the simple, straight forward dialogue elevated this work above many of its cheaper, more tawdry (but often more fun) brethren. In fact, I would suggest this transcends genre to enter the realm of literature (if there even is such a thing).power dynamics -- To read my reaction to the prose, I imagine one would assume I loved Story of O, but then there is my reaction to the power dynamics. Call it toxic masculinity, if you will (though I don't buy that), call it patriarchy (perhaps), call it ruling class privilege (which accounts for the power of everyone from Sir Stephen to Anne-Marie, and is, thus, more in line with my own privileged Marxist thought), whatever you call it the abuse of power, the manipulation of the vulnerable, the rape, the abuse, the "erotic" torture without consent, is discomfiting at best and utterly repugnant at worst. I am not a prude when it comes to BDSM -- recognizing the possibility to fully consensual play in that realm -- but Story of O went well beyond play and into a lifestyle that only the rich and powerful could (and more than likely can) sustain. And listening to this during the #metoo moment made my repugnance over what I was hearing a constant companion.erotica -- This is, of course, why I came to Story of O in the first place. I am a fan of erotica. Some of the most beautiful writing I've read is erotic in nature, and I would much rather read a book about people making love (or even just getting sweaty and fucking each other to exhaustion) than to read another book with death, destruction and violence, but finding good erotic books seems to be a difficult thing. Story of O, then, is a must read for a fan of erotic literature. Yet I didn't find it all that erotic despite the lovely prose. A big part of that failure for me is due to my discomfort with the power dynamics, but I think an equal issue for me was that Pauline Réage chose to float around sexuality with euphemisms, that when it came to genitalia her descriptions disappeared behind vagueness. I suppose I like my genitalia plain and in my face.message -- I see two possibilities: one, that Pauline Réage is criticizing not just this O world of rape and abuse, but all societies that could either let this happen or provide fertile ground for its growth; two, that she is actually suggesting that the world of O, its power dynamics, its sexuality, its subservience, its glorification of actual slavery is right and just. Perhaps it is a strength of the novel that I finished it not knowing what Réage intended; perhaps it is a strength of the novel that I finished it not knowing what I took away; perhaps, too, the presence of both of these possibilities is a terminal weakness. I just don't know.

  • Deny
    2019-06-10 05:25

    Давам 3 звезди на тази книга, не защото е за харесване. А защото е книга, която разтърсва. Не шокира. "Шокирането" е за булевардните еротични романи. Не, че в ХХІ век те имат с какво да шокират. "Историята на О" мачка и потиска. Заради нещата, които сами сме способни да си причиним. Заради нещата, които искаме да ни причинят. Заради скритото желание да бъдем притежавани, да принадлежим на господар, който да ни освободи от непосилното бреме на свободата. Това не е история за садо-мазо секс. Не е "50 нюанса сиво", макар че ако онази книга искаше да разкаже истинска история с истински, пълнокръвни герои и честна развръзка, би била нещо подобно. Не искам да правя сравнения, но не мога да ги избегна. Това, което отличава "Историята на О" от еротичните булевардни романи е нейната художествена стойност. Тази книга е литература и то литература с истински глас и автентичен стил. Започнах да пиша за историята на книгата, но намерих прекрасен текст, публикуван в "Либерален поглед" и не виждам какво по-добро може да се напише от него както. Затова линк: О. е фотографка в модна агенция - успяла и сравнително независима млада жена, която обаче се предава на желанията на любовника си Рене да бъде подчинена и употребена до степен, в която да се превърне просто в оръдие за достигане на неговото удоволствие. За целта О. едва ли не отвлечена и минава през "обучение" в тайнствен замък, където бива унижавана, насилвана и употребявана по всеки възможен начин от безброй непознати. И това е само първата глава на книгата. Главната героиня съществува в историята с един единствен инициал - О. Няма как да не се запиташ кое име се крие за тази буква. И има ли изобщо име или е важна самата буква "О". Защо? Не е трудно да се направи асоциация. Макар че на мен ми хрумват няколко, щом се сетя за жената, която е обезличена под този инициал. Това, което може да ужаси в "Историята на О" не са нещата, които мъжете причиняват на О, а това, което тя самата е способна да си причини. А то не е просто пълно сексуално подчинение. О не понася изтезанията. Тя ги превръща в единствен смисъл на съществуването си. В началото О е представена на читателя действително като парче месо без воля и личност. Героиня наивна и вероятно сексуално неопитна. Нищо друго, казваш си, не би обяснило безропотното подчинение, което демонстрира в Замъка, в който е "превъзпитавана". И после образът й се разгръща напълно след завръщането й в реалния свят в следващите глави. Колкото по-драматични и чудовищни стават изпитанията й, толкова повече О разкрива своето минало - съвсем не минало на девица, и демонстрира характер и желание за поквара и власт. Която тя всъщност постига, колкото по-отдадено се подчинява. Докато не се превръща просто в предмет, в бижу, окачено на верижка. Буквално. Докато четях книгата, непрекъснато се сещах за една фраза на британската писателка Анджела Картър от есето й "Жената на дьо Сад" („The Sadeian Woman”), която ме занимава през последните месеци:„To be the object of desire is to be defined in the passive case. To exist in the passive case is to die in the passive case - that is, to be killed. This is the moral of the fairy tale about the perfect woman.” Да бъдеш обект на желанието, означава да бъдеш ограничена в нечии представи, до формата на нечии желания. Да бъдеш оформена в съвършената жена. Колкото по-дълго продължи това, колкото по-безропотно се приема, толкова повече от субект се превръщаш в обект на желание. Накрая това изисква да бъдеш ограничена до съществуване във/като предмет. И това убива. Не физически. Убива Аз-а, личността. А в случая на О може би й помага да се самореализира като се обезличи напълно. "Колкото повече бива измъчвана, толкова повече О става „перфектно женствена“", пише в едно ревю на книгата. О. наистина бива оформена като перфектната жена. В процеса тя все повече се отдалечава от себе си, спира да бъде жената зад инициала, а накрая въобще спира да бъде и О. Става просто Кукумявката. А това дори не е истинският финал на историята й. Той е спестен на читателя може би защото е твърде ужасяващ, или просто защото е ненужна подробност в Историята.

  • David
    2019-06-21 05:24

    I usually read anything anyone suggests to me, which is how I came to read Story of O.This is an erotic novel about a young woman's journey into the BDSM lifestyle. While this is not a lifestyle choice for me, I am curious as to why others participate in it, so I hoped this book might give me some insight.Unfortunately this book did as poor a job of shedding light on the motivations of that lifestyle as it did in creating believable characters. The latter was what really killed the book for me, none of the characters were believable, and I was actually left disliking the protagonist, O.The content of the book was far from erotic, and the tortures experienced by O were grossly shocking, at times it more felt as if I was reading a gore-filled horror book.I kept on reading the book with the hope that it would conclude with some great revelation where everything became clear. I was sorely disappointed here because the book isn't even finished. It concludes with barely a paragraph of notes on two possible endings of the book.The first novel I've given a thumbs down to.

  • Heather
    2019-06-11 01:13

    Shocking! Seriously shocking! And that, despite all the sex, drugs, violence, etc. that we are constantly barraged by. This book is seriously shocking. I mean it. Things are done in this book that even nihilist sadomasichists would be wide-eyed at.The author cleverly first draws readers in with risque light trashy novel pornography. Then she turns it up a notch, and turns it up, and turns it up. In this way, she makes the reader complicit in what happens. You'll be unable to put the book down; yet all the while feeling like some sick-o pervert. By the completely astounding and unimaginable ending you'll understand the author's point that sexual deviancy is a dark and slippery slope. They say this is feminist literature. I guess.

  • Jessica
    2019-06-12 06:15

    ....preferably while eating bonbons, cutting class, and wearing snagged-up fishnet stockings and too much eye makeup.I don't remember anything about this book except that I think it pretty much delivered on what I expected a slightly older, naughty, European sex novel would be like. It is rather ridiculous and actually pretty dirty, if I remember correctly. Plus more hardcore than the leading brand.