Sex Tips from a Dominatrix - erotic book by Harper Entertainment - review by AndroAngel

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Sex Tips from a Dominatrix

Book by Harper Entertainment

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Domina-Tricks

Overall, I would recommend this book, but only for its extraordinarily helpful advice on choosing and maintaining your equipment and clothing. It also has excellent knot-tying advice and diagrams, and some helpful hints for basic pervertables.*

*Everyday objects that can be used for kinky purposes.
Published:
Pros:
Useful for selecting and caring for equipment and clothing, rope bondage, excellent diagrams
Cons:
Awful tone, generally condescending, neglects safety advice in places
Rating by reviewer:
4
extremely useful review

About author

I wasn't familiar with the author when I first picked up "Sex Tips from a Dominatrix," so I was forced to do a little research. To say information on her is scarce would be an understatement. Patricia Payne is a pen name, and as far as I could find, she's only written this book. It seems from the singular interview with her I was able to find that she's a technical writer for a Fortune 500 company and not a pro-domme. The dominatrix who was originally hired to write this book turned out something "too hardcore" in the words of Mistress Payne, so her manuscript was chosen instead.
    • Very personal approach

Content / Style / Audience

"Sex Tips from a Dominatrix" is a book intended to help the reader navigate the complicated world of BDSM. BDSM is a catchall term for Bondage, Discipline, Dominance, Submission, Sadism, and Masochism, so the author has quite a bit to cover. Topics covered in this book include determining if you're a dominant or a submissive, introducing your lover to BDSM, BDSM clothing, rope bondage, other types of bondage, gags, impact play, play party and club decorum, dungeon furniture, setting up your bedroom to be used for kink, traveling while kinky, exercise routines (a chapter which I personally don't find necessary), meeting people in the community, and "advanced" activities.

The intended audience of this book seems to be rich, able-bodied, thin, white cis-women*, with a background in fashion, or other kinksters willing to laugh at nonsense and glean good advice where it's offered. I wouldn't recommend this book to newcomers because the author neglects important safety advice in places and gives some truly terrible advice in others, but for an intermediate or advanced kinkster who already has a basis of knowledge from which to work, the author of this book has some interesting suggestions and a few innovative ideas that I, for one, hadn't heard up until this point. Not to mention that the author presents some very useful information on care of fetish clothing, knot-tying, proper rope storage, the pros and cons of various types of rope, care and use of impact toys, and other topics. It is, in fact, the best resource I've found to date for descriptions and care of fetish clothing, equipment, and rope.

There is a chapter on finding your place in the world of dominance and submission that I found to be mostly useless. This chapter did, however contain the advice that a dominant must be willing to learn how to do each BDSM activity safely. There was also a chapter on introducing BDSM to your partner that I found in bad taste. That particular chapter read like the setup to a BDSM-themed romantic comedy featuring a husband and wife both trying to assume the role of dominant. (The author suggests that the reader should "strip down to something sexy" if their partner is aroused by a portrayal of an enslaved woman.)

The chapter on BDSM clothing was a mix-bag of good advice and bad stereotypes, and the chapter on rope bondage was overall extremely informative. Unfortunately, the author did insinuate that using any of the quick, practical ways to seal the ends of a rope will look "wimpy." The only way to be an "accomplished domme," according to her, is to seal the ends by whipping them. Whipping is a technique used by nautical rope-users that requires a good bit of skill and practice to learn, and may require special equipment, so this isn't the most practical advice.

The topics covered were overall extremely mild, and unlikely to frighten anyone away.

*Women whose assigned gender matches their chosen gender and their body.
  • Who / How / What
    [ ? ]
    Who might this product be best for? How is it best used? What are the best circumstances or situations for using this product?
    • Advanced kinksters
    • Intermediate kinksters
  • General
    [ ? ]
    Other tags that are useful and descriptive for this product.
    • Bdsm
    • Fetish
    • Instructional / educational

Design

The cover of this book is fun and bubbly, and by that, I mean it is difficult to take seriously. It's a hardback book, which is a plus. Unfortunately the title is scrawled in huge font across the entire front of the opaque book sleeve. The actual cover of the book features a scantily clad lady in leather, giving the overall impression that the graphic designer was indecisive and decided to have both.

If you take off the sleeve (which I opted to do) you're left with the scantily clad lady and nothing to explain what the book is about. Without the sleeve, the spine of the book is left blank, so you could theoretically put it on your bookshelf with no problem unless you have friends who need to know what every book on the shelf is. Carrying it around is another problem entirely; one I solved by upcycling the packaging paper from my order into a book cover.

The typography also had me shaking my head. The person who set the font paired a casual party font with an elaborate Gothic font, and the overall effect is reminiscent of a kid's birthday invitation as done by Dracula.

The book itself, however, is beautifully bound and the paper is good quality. It should last a long time and stand up to a fair amount of abuse.
    • Diagrams / photos included
    • Hard cover
    • Not very discreet cover

Personal comments

Personally, I didn't like the overall tone of the book. The author seems to imply throughout that there are certain ways that women should be, and if you aren't conforming, there is something wrong with you. She also seems to assume that any woman will know the names of the designer labels she drops, and what she's talking about when she describes what a disaster it would be if the Dom was wearing casual clothes and the sub was wearing "a Demask bustier and Manolo Blahnik shoes." Likewise, she has a "quiz" to determine if a man should be allowed to wear leather, and if he isn't young, thin, or "cool" enough, he should "become younger or thinner." Overall, I'd liken the tone to that of Cosmopolitan, and that really isn't a good thing.

Experience

I'll be keeping this book on my shelf next to all my other BDSM references. I'm likely to use the advice on leather care and rope care again and again. Chances are good that if I get a new toy, I'll be able to flip through this book to learn how to care for it and what it does.

To be honest, this book really should have been titled "Equipment Care and Selection Advice from a Dominatrix."

I'd personally pair this book with "When Someone You Love is Kinky" by Catherine A. Liszt and Dossie Easton; and "Safe, Sane, Consensual, and Fun" by John Warren to expand upon some of the areas this book was more vague on.
This product was provided free of charge to the reviewer. This review is in compliance with the FTC guidelines.
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This review was edited by
  • aliceinthehole aliceinthehole
  • Rank:
     
    6.7
  • Edited reviews: 46
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Comments
  • aliceinthehole
    top notch review! congrats.
  • aliceinthehole
    top notch review! congrats.
  • AndroAngel
    Thank you, Couldn't have done it without you!
  • lilly555
    Fantastic review, I personally don't think I could be this informative about a book but you nailed it
  • AndroAngel
    Thank you, Tripod, but I really have to give credit to Aliceinthehole for mentoring me.
  • Kitka
    Awesome review!
  • Antipova
    This review was absolutely fabulous. Judging from the cover, I might have tried to pick this up---but your description of the tone makes me absolutely glad I didn't. I'm not a designer label girl, the cosmo-esque leatherwearing advice grates, and when people act like there's only one way to do things I usually wind up feeling a little left out.

    More than that---the knot tying reminds me of the difference between a harbor full of yachts, and a harbor full of fishing boats. The yacht harbor will have all the of leftover rope wrapped in dainty spirals around the cleat, while the fishing harbors have a useful cleat knot and leave the rest of the rope spread out so it's not tangled and not getting wet. The yacht guys are always going to look down their noses at the fishermen, but honestly? Nobody's boat is floating away. Unless you're posing for pictures, I'm usually fine with the practical approach. Thanks for letting me know to look elsewhere!
  • Antipova
    Thanks for the 'suggested additional reading" section too---that's super useful!
  • AndroAngel
    Funny you should mention that, Antipova, the author actually states that she first decided she wanted to learn rope-bondage on a Yacht.

    To be honest, we're a lot alike in that department. I hate followers of the "One True Way" in any group, they have a way of making others feel unwelcome.
  • aliceinthehole
    putting you in the review roundup for next week! you can find it at the following link in a couple days:

    [http://www.edenfantasys.com/sex-toy-reviews/bdsm/great-way-to-get-into-light-bondage]

  • aliceinthehole
    oops, i meant this link! [http://www.edenfantasys.com/sex-forum/reviewprogram/weekly-review-roundup/]
  • AndroAngel
    Wow, thank you!
  • Starkiller87
    Amazing review, I never know how to go about writing book reviews and you did a great job. It is so amazingly detailed without reading the book to us.
  • geliebt
    Awesome review!
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