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Delta of Venus (1977)

by Anaïs Nin

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,127511,985 (3.5)104
In Delta of Venus Anais Nin penned a lush, magical world where the characters of her imagination possess the most universal of desires and exceptional of talents. Among these provocative stories, a Hungarian adventurer seduces wealthy women then vanishes with their money; a veiled woman selects strangers from a chic restaurant for private trysts; and a Parisian hatmaker named Mathilde leaves her husband for the opium dens of Peru. Delta of Venus is an extraordinarily rich and exotic collection from the master of erotic writing.… (more)
  1. 00
    The Curious Sofa: A Pornographic Work by Ogdred Weary by Edward Gorey (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: Sexually adventurous people go on an outing, taking a big dog with them.

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» See also 104 mentions

English (36)  Italian (5)  French (5)  Swedish (1)  Hebrew (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  All languages (49)
Showing 1-5 of 36 (next | show all)

I mean, I had never heard of this until recently when I had been dared to read it, and yes, I knew that I was getting into heavy erotica, but I hadn't expected it to be so damn good.

Seriously. I'm not ashamed to admit that I was almost completely unable to stand up during most of the read, and because I was using text-t0-speech, that mean being rather unpleasantly surprised as I was up and about during my day.

I wanted to scream out, "Oh, come on!" or "This isn't Fair!" at random people as I was reading.

And then, at various moments, I pondered the great mystery of why so many men don't read this kind of romance. It's very easy, my dear women. In fact's extremely hard to hide the fact. Forget about all the scoffing and the hems and the haws and all the condescending humor that jerky men use to explain why they don't read this stuff. It's all baloney.

This book is full of really good stuff.

Extremely good stuff: from the pure writing, the interweaving themes and characters and the way that the individual stories make up a much grander story of sexuality, right down the purely expert and sensual eroticism of the sex acts themselves. I've never read better, but I'll admit that most of what I've read has really been quite horrible.

Even so, I'm amazed at how sensual she can turn all these kinds of turns, or even the direction she takes them. So many of my own sensibilities were shocked and disturbed as I read a few particularly difficult scenes, but as a whole, the entire book was truly amazing. Perhaps all that illicit and taboo material functions fantastically as the spice that tips us in and out of our complacency and into the deeper animal parts of us that love to be shocked, allowing us to enjoy the rest of the tales like we're getting away with something even more absolutely naughty than it really might be.

Seriously, if every erotic writer or if ANY writer including a sex scene might take a page out of her book, so many of the greatest crimes against sex might be rectified.

Seriously, people, this is Literature, plain and simple, with a freedom applied to women's sensuality that is really quite brilliant. It should be studied, applauded, and copied. Alas.

I hope her writing is always remembered. :) ( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |

Classic erotica short stories, varying quite a lot in length, subject matter and (frankly) appeal. The story of "Elena" takes up more than a quarter of the book; I actually found the following story, "The Basque and Bijou", the most interesting as the two named characters try various things to different degrees of satisfaction. A lot of erotica is single-themed to the point of monotony; this certainly isn't. ( )
2 vote nwhyte | Dec 30, 2018 |
A primeira metade do livro é mediana, mas a partir do conto Elena o mesmo se torna uma obra prima de erotização desenfreada, você encontra de tudo aqui em termos de gostos sexuais, de necrofilia à bestialismo, de sadomasoquismo à voyerismo, afinal, Nin não foi assistente e amante de Otto Rank por nada. ( )
  Adriana_Scarpin | Jun 12, 2018 |
Got bored halfway through and gave up. Meh.... ( )
  TineSidhe | Aug 23, 2017 |
I have mixed feelings about this one, like a lot of people.

On the one hand, it's Anaïs Nin, the one-woman powerhouse who wrote erotica in the 20th century. Erotica from a female perspective, which no one was doing at the time. On the other, reading it, it didn't always feel like her.

And I generally don't read books for the plot or the characters, I read it for the writing. So if it didn't feel like her, it just took me twice as long to read one story as it might've otherwise.

I realised, while reading this book, that I much prefer Nin's stories when they were written from a female perspective. I feel that she puts parts of herself in her stories, and the more I read, the more I'd find out about her. Her vulnerabilities, her eccentricities, her dreams.

Yes, it was dark, yes it was erotic and sensual in that it engaged all the five senses.

It's hard to rate this book because overall, it's not my favourite of her works, and yet some of the stories were my favourite in this book and otherwise.

It's been a strange and wild ride, Anaïs. Only you could puzzle me the way you do.

And thank you so much to Christina for buddy-reading this with me! It's been on my shelf so long, it's great to tick it off my to-read list.

(Uh, also, I should say, this book is riddled with triggers. So, let's get started. tw: rape, non-consensual sex, beastiality, necrophilia, underaged sex... all the things. It's pretty dark.) ( )
1 vote lydia1879 | Aug 31, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 36 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (21 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Nin, Anaïsprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Commengé, BéatriceTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lokka, PirkkoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mörling, MikaelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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There was a Hungarian adventurer who had astonishing beauty, infallible charm, grace, the powers of a trained actor, culture, knowledge of many tongues, aristocratic manners.
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1.5 6
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2.5 16
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Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141182849, 014103730X

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