A noted Peruvian author’s compelling assortment of essays on female sexuality, gender, and the wonders of the human body.
In her first book-length work to be translated into English, Wiener, the former editor of the Spanish version of Marie Claire, assembles a series of writings that are keenly representative of her perspectives on sexuality. She also relates anecdotes from her curious journalistic wanderings and her “unfaithful” life. Some of her tales include a fascinating profile of a boastful Peruvian sex guru and his harem of six wives, an undercover visit to a Lima prison to survey jail tattoo culture, and an intimately and vividly described evening at a Barcelona swingers’ club with her husband in tow to enjoy erotic delights from the “alchemists of sex.” Elsewhere, Wiener participates in a dominatrix demonstration and an ayahuasca ceremony, and she discusses the legacy of Chilean author Isabel Allende (“famous enough to be on a par with the likes of Stephen King, Gabriel García Márquez, and J. K. Rowling”). In a brief though engaging piece demonstrating Wiener’s dry humor, wit, and immersive sense of journalism, she investigates the myths and complexities of female ejaculation. Later, she turns her gaze inward to address the dynamics of her current polyamorous relationship with a man and a woman while wholly admitting, “I never got the knack of fidelity.” The author’s voice is passionate, authoritative, and pensive, and her tantalizing tour of the taboo and the risqué becomes an addictive pleasure as the book progresses. Her perspectives are both illuminating and educative as she instructs readers to contemplate issues such as sexuality, gender politics, and social injustice as well as how motherhood has the potential to change how a woman perceives the bigger picture. In a particularly warm, memorable story, Wiener describes how her daughter refused to sleep on her own, causing the sleep-deprived author to contort herself into a kid-sized bed.
A frank, self-aware, provocatively voyeuristic narrative spanning the politics of the body, inside and out.