78. Sex with the Queen - Eleanor Herman

Monday, August 11, 2008
Since the first cave dwelling Neanderthal figured that there had to be a better way to get a bit of tail other than hitting it over the head, men have asked themselves that eternal question: What do women want? Love, power, happiness, money, security. And sex. Lots of sex. Why should royal women be any different than the rest of us? In Sex with the Queen (a companion to her earlier Sex with Kings), Eleanor Herman shows us the steamy sex lives of some of histories most famous female sovereigns.

Mixed in amongst names we all recognize (Catherine the Great, Queen Victoria, Princess Diana), we're introduced to a number of royal adulteresses that we may not be so familiar with, and the men who were fortunate (or unfortunate) enough to share their beds. A slightly more explicit read than Sex with Kings without being smutty, Herman's book shows the reader that despite wearing a crown, the Queens she holds up for examination want the same thing we all do - to be loved. However, the means they use to achieve that love, and to keep it, are far more than most of us could dream of.

While love affairs on both sides of the bed were often silently accepted, the moment it became public knowledge and threatened the crown, the royal women who dared step outside of their marriage vows faced harsh punishments. Some, such as the many wives of England's Henry VIII, faced execution; others imprisonment, the loss of their children, banishment, humiliation and, the lightest of the punishments, divorce and loss of title. The men they dared to love? Their fates were almost always more severe than that of their majestic mistresses.

Herman's book is a bit unfocused for the first few chapters but she soon finds her stride and settles in. Unlike her earlier book on kings and their kept women, Sex with the Queen is much more organized. After learning her lesson with the mish mash of information she provided the reader with in Kings and the constant repetition of information, its female counterpart is laid out chronologically (with the exception of the first few general chapters), taking examples from some of the greatest ruling matriarchs throughout Europe and Russia.

The reader will easily get over their initial voyeuristic feelings and relish in exploring the sexual exploits of histories most influential women. An easy, delightful read.

1 comments:

Wandering Coyote said...

I'm glad you said "an easy delightful read." I was kinda wondering how heavy a read this would be. Now, I have to get this onto my current mountain of books!

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