The Diary of a Submissive by Sophie Morgan
Paperback, 320 pages
Published 30th August 2012 by Penguin
In the wake of Fifty Shades of Grey, here is a memoir that offers the real story of what it means to be a submissive. From the endorphin rush of her first spanking right through to punishments the likes of which she couldn't begin to imagine, she explains in frank and explicit fashion the road she travels. But it isn't until she meets James that her boundaries are really pushed. As her relationship with him travels into darker and darker places the question becomes: where will it end? Can she reconcile her sexuality with the rest of her life and is it possible for the perfect man to also be perfectly cruel?
Racy, controversial, but always warm, fun and astoundingly honest this is a fascinating and thought provoking look at a seemingly paradoxical side to human nature and sexuality that no man or woman will be able to put down.
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My thanks go to Penguin for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review.
Okay, I'll admit that I feel bad for giving a book such a low rating, but I don't do it unless I really don't like the book, and this was one of these books. I'm not a prudish person, I'm quite open and taboo subjects don't put me off, they interest and intrigue me. However, something about this book didn't feel right to me.
I went into this book with an open mind - in fact, I was excited to read it and to see what it was like. After the roaring success of Fifty Shades of Grey, I am sure that a lot of people will want to see what the BDSM lifestyle is really like. Sophie Morgan gives us a look into her life in this memoir, describing her life as a submissive.
The book opens with a very vivid description of the author and her partner on a street, with someone watching them. The scene is obviously meant to look very abusive, and it's successful in that way - it did seem abusive and to be honest, it did make me feel a little disgusted, there was certainly nothing appealing about the situation to me, anyway. I understand that this was probably the point, but after reading that small section, I already wanted to put the book down. A lot of people do simply see this lifestyle as abusive and if you do, I really don't think this is a book that will change your mind. I do not find the thought of BDSM abusive, but I have to say that I did feel that at points in this book, Morgan was in a somewhat abusive situation.
Some people will enjoy this book and the insight that it gives you into BDSM relationships and lifestyles, but to be honest, I didn't learn anything new from this book. It's not to say I know a lot about BDSM, just the things that most people know. I was hoping to really get behind some of the thoughts and emotions, some of the issues behind this somewhat taboo subject and I was glad to see that Morgan was recognising some of the emotional issues related to acting as a submissive and acknowledging them, but I still would've liked to explore this further. Of course, to please those who are simply reading it for the sex scenes, there are lots of those - similar situations with a few different men.
One of my main problems was that I simply couldn't bring myself to care much about Sophie. She is very defensive and full of contradictions which really infuriated me. Her insistence on labelling herself a feminist and grammar fascist were grinding - especially when on the next page the wrong your was used! I certainly didn't hate her, but the problem was that I didn't like her either - I couldn't connect with her in any way as I felt she was always trying to make herself appear to be above others, living some elitist lifestyle, which ironically she is making appear quite common.
Despite Morgan being a journalist, I wasn't impressed with the writing in this book and some of the language that she used in this book was anything but sexy - instead quite crude. As you may be able to tell, this isn't a book that I enjoyed nor was it one that I would particularly recommend. I don't regret reading this book, but it's not a book that will stay with me for any of the right reasons.