This is a wonderfully entertaining, sometimes humorous, sometimes shocking, sometimes challenging, but always entertaining account of this man’s life. Many other men can only fantasize about what he has experienced. Could the variety and extent of his sexual world really belong to one man? How did he keep this side of his life secret? What triggerpoints in his life can explain his behaviour?
There was a leather armchair in the corner across from me, and next to it some kind of apparatus against the wall. I wasn’t sure what it was but it looked like something you could use to restrain someone. It might be my first time here, but I knew where I was and had some idea of what went on. Or at least, I thought I did. It was like a large “X” shape and had small metal eye hooks attached at various points. It had a foreboding look, but at the same time I was excited and intrigued looking at it. I would later learn that it’s called a St Andrews Cross, and I would come to love the view from it, with my arms and legs spread, and my naked body shackled against it. But that would all come later, as I dived headlong into the exciting world of BDSM. For now I felt like a country rube that had been dropped into the middle of Times Square.
There were other various loose items around the room, on shelves and hanging from the walls. There were masks, whips and dildos. Lots of leather. I smiled to myself through my inebriated haze, ‘lots of leather, what did I expect?’ Even without visiting a dungeon, everyone who thinks about it has the stereotypical images of a mistress. Tall, dressed in tight leather outfits, long leather boots, and the mandatory leather whip. But in the end, mistresses come in all shapes and sizes and dress in all kinds of ways, although always sexily. They are such delicious creatures.
After a while I heard footsteps approach the door. It opened quietly and the receptionist came into the room with my drink.“Here you are,” she said, handing me the glass. “The mistresses won’t be long now. Make yourself comfortable.”
I thanked her as she left the room, and drank my scotch, syphoning it through the ice she had put in the glass and drained it in a gulp. I remember thinking it was way too much ice, and made a mental note to pass on the coke next time. I placed the glass on the table and stood up, wondering where I’d be most comfortable, and whether I should be sitting or standing when the mistresses came in. I decided to sit, and went to the other side of the room and sat in the armchair, next to the St Andrews cross. The armchair was facing the door directly, and diagonally opposite. I sat and waited. My mind was numb with anticipation……and what the fuck was taking so long! It was like time had gone into slow motion. I couldn’t think anymore, wondering what was going to happen, and what it would be like, so I tried to sit quietly, and waited.
More footsteps; finally!
This time when the door opened I got my first look at a Mistress.
The writing in this book is top-notch. The writer’s style is clear and approachable and made the book easy to read. This book would, however, not be suitable for younger readers due to the language and the explicit descriptions of sexual scenes. Josef’s urges, as described here, feel like an addiction and as with most addictions he makes many attempts to change before finally being able to succeed with the help of a therapist. The struggle the author felt as he watched his urges destroy two marriages and several other relationships is palpable.
Josef also goes into great detail about how he views the role of the Catholic Church, where he was raised, in developing his feelings of guilt and shame about the activities which gave him such pleasure. He also goes into his views on how society’s attitudes toward sex make life more difficult for people like him. Josef points out to us the humanity of those people who are involved in the sex industry and presents them to us as people just wanting to have a life they can enjoy. Josef does not push the reader to want to participate in this world but he does push for it to be accepted by non-participants as a valid choice for an individual.
The obvious readers of this book are people who also engage in the world of bondage and enjoy reading about it. But I think this book could also be a good choice for people who would like a greater understanding of something they are not already familiar with and also for those who enjoy stories about people who struggle but find their victory in the end. Josef exposes some very ugly truths in his book and he bares his soul to his readers. I believe there are some who will take courage from this story and be able to apply that to their own lives. I tip my hat to Josef for being willing to share his story with the world and allowing his readers to make up their own minds about whether they are willing to change their viewpoints after reading it.
Reviewed at the Hungry Monster Book Review