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Cannonball Read V: Whip Smart by Melissa Febos

By AlisonRT25 | Book Reviews | April 29, 2013 | Comments ()


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Whip Smart is a memoir detailing the years the author spent as a dominatrix in New York City. Beyond the graphic descriptions of her sessions with clients, Melissa Febos delves into how her addiction to drugs and control led her into the profession. And it was only after realizing and accepting in some way that she enjoyed the power of being a dom, that she was eventually able to leave it behind.

The memoir is extremely well written and a quick read. Divided into parts it begins with the fantasy of how glamorous and financially rewarding it can be to work as a dominatrix, then moves into her drug abuse and acceptance that she has a problem, to her working as a sober dominatrix and, finally, to her life after she quits the profession . Power and control are the underlying themes throughout each section of the book.

I thoroughly enjoyed it and appreciated that the author didn't hold back on getting into the psychological aspect of not only what brought her into becoming a dom, but what brought her clients there. The idea that these submissive/masochistic sessions are a type of therapy for people to work out issues with their exes, their mother's, their bosses...makes it all quite fascinating for anyone interested in why people do the things they do.

This review is part of the volunteer Cannonball Read V. Read all about it , and find more of alisonrt25's reviews on the group blog.

(Note: Any revenue generated from purchases made through the amazon.com affiliate links in this review will be donated in entirety to the American Cancer Society.)



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Comments Are Welcome, Jerks Will Be Banned


  • True_Blue

    On a completely different note--if you spend years working as a dominatrix, how do you transition into a "normal" job? What do you put in your resume--"from 2008-2012, I whipped men while dressed in leather outfits, then the men paid me"?

  • cl

    This sounds very intriguing. Thanks for the review, I'll have to keep an eye out for it.

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