Book Review: Two Knotty Boys Showing You the Ropes

January 12, 2009

I get sent a lot of sex toys to review. But as much as I love sex toys, I also love reading. I like reading erotica, I like reading sex writing, and I like reading educational books. understands my love and need for words on paper, and was kind enough to send me Two Knotty Boys — Showing You the Ropes, another book for my collection on rope bondage.

I recently review Midori’s book, the Seductive Art of Japanese Bondage, and I was excited to get another book on rope bondage for a different viewpoint, and new ideas.

The intro to this book wasn’t very long, but it has the important bits. A mini-background on rope bondage, a well written list of “Dos and Don’ts” that I found easy to read and comprehend, and a few pages on the types of rope. I liked this section, as I don’t know much about rope, and it gave an easy overview of the different materials (including their uses, pros, cons, etc), the best ways to clean and cut different types of rope, etc.

Next off, we have the rope itself. I really appreciate the step by step pictures. While I’m very good at visualizing things, it was awesome to have a guide to go along with the words, to make sure I was doing the right thing, and was on the right path. I also was excited to learn chain braiding, ideal for rope storage.

The rest of the book was divided into sections; the Knots (decorative and functional), Basic Bondage, Decorative Bondage (my favorite part– there are some really interesting and really pretty ties in this section!), Dominance Bondage, and Sex Bondage. Each section has about seven or eight different ties, and shows you step by step, with both instructions and pictures, exactly how to accomplish that particular tie. Also, each tie tells you a little bit about how it should be used, whether it is ok for newbies or should be saved for seasoned (and/or bratty) rope veterans, what length of rope is needed, and what diameter of rope should be used.

Behind all of the ties is a reference section and a glossary, which really is a must for any type of kink or sexuality book, in my not so humble opinion.

I really like how the ties are laid out. It’s easy to read, and to understand, and if I happened to need to keep a copy of it by my bed to check in as I did the ties, it’s super simple to follow, even with a squirming partner right next to you.

I’m not the biggest fan of rope bondage…at times, it is beautiful, but to me, it is also very time consuming, and I tend to lose circulation very quickly, so for me it seems like not a lot of result for so much time and effort. However, after reading this book, I really want to learn more of these decorative knots and rope wear, as I think they are absolutely beautiful, and completely worth it. I’d give this book 5 stars out of 5.

You can never have too many books! If you want your own copy of this incredibly detailed, amusing, and helpful book, you can get it here.

-Essin’ Em

December 6, 2008

Rope bondage as always interested me in some way or another, and I figure, what better way to get started learning about it than by reading The Seductive Art of Japanese Bondage by one of the best known figures in the kink community, Midori. Plus, I really love books – am a total bibliphile.

My absolute favorite thing about this book is that is more than just the same old “how to” type of book. Rather, it talks a lot about the beauty and history of Japanese Rope Bondage. It also gives a lot information on pretty much everything; choosing rope (type, material, length), cleaning and taking care of your rope, safety, how to prepare a scene, running a scene, after care (and can I just say that having a straw for water of the list of items you might want to have was loving, adorable and brilliant).

Then we get to the actual rope designs part of the book. Each individual rope bondage has a name, a beautiful color picture, some information about the position (what you need, what it’s good for, etc), a little snippet of erotica, and then of course, step by step instructions, with some pictures. Easy as pie, right?

Well, I was a little confused about some of the instructions, and there is only a picture for every third instruction or so. Now, my primary partner has been out of town, so I haven’t been able to find anyone to tie up (or to read the book and tie me up). Maybe it is easier when you’re doing it on a person and not a body pillow (hey, at least I was giving it a good go, right?). I’ll give an update once we’re actually tried it out with living, breathing (and ouch-saying) people.

I will say that while this book only has a few different types of ties, this is a brilliant and perfect book for ropes beginners like myself. After reading it, I felt much more ready to give rope bondage a try. Great instructions, BEAUTIFUL full color pictures, and a strong background, both in the history and the safety of rope bondage. 5 stars — highly recommended.

Head over to for your very own copy of The Seductive Art of Japanese Bondage or for some sexy sex toys of your own.

-Essin’ Em

Porn Nation: Conquering America’s #1 Addiction

July 30, 2008

Audacia Ray reviews Porn Nation: Conquering America’s #1 Addiction, a first hand account of porn/sex addiction by Michael Leahy.

Ladies of the Night: A Historical and Personal Perspective on the Oldest Profession in the World

July 23, 2008

Audacia Ray reviews Ladies of the Night: A Historical and Personal Perspective on the Oldest Profession in the World, advice by Gene Simmons (yes, that Gene Simmons)

Divas of San Francisco

July 16, 2008

Audacia Ray reviews Divas of San Francisco: Portraits of Transsexual Women , a soft cover photo book (read: actually affordable) by David Steinberg.

Also, I lied about the twice a week thing. For the next several weeks I’ll be putting up videos once a week, and in mid-August I’ll be introducing a new, longer format for Live Girl Review, plus I’ll be adding an audio version of the show.

Pokin’ Round the Gorge: A Sexy-Romantic Guide for Gorge Lovers

July 11, 2008

Ah! It’s been too long! But I haven’t abandoned ship, I’ve just been insanely busy and had to let Live Girl Review fall quiet for a while. As I say in the video, I’m coming off of my first semester of teaching at the college level – human sexuality, of course. I’ve also been very busy with my new job as the editor of the Village Voice sexuality blog Naked City, for which I also produce a weekly video show, which goes live on Mondays. But, no more excuses! More episodes of Live Girl Review are on their way down the tube, and I finally got it together so you can subscribe to the show through itunes:

I’m attempting to return to the schedule of two shows a week and am sort of contemplating changing the format. Would you like to see fewer, longer shows with more reviews within each show, or should it stay the same with more frequent, shorter shows about one product each? Any comments or suggestions are welcome, either here or via email:

Now, without further ado – today’s show is about a travel guide, Pokin’ Round the Gorge: A Sexy-Romantic Guide for Gorge Lovers. “Gorge” is not a eupehmism, its actually a guide book about the Columbia River Gorge that extends through Oregon and Washington. Written by enthusiastic guide and naked man Scott Cook, the book lets you in on some secrets of great places to hang out in nature and steathily get nude. If you want to hear more from Scott, check out the interview I did with him on Naked City.

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