Love: Book Review – ‘With My Body’

Husband asked me last night whether the novel I was reading had any sex in it. My reply was, ‘I don’t bother reading a book unless it has sex in it.’ I then became very curious and asked, ‘has your book got sex in it?’, he replied with a quick and defensive, ‘No!’ and I asked curiously,’If not for sex, then what does your book have in it?’, his reply, ‘adventure!’.

This brought me to my previous, yet recent, book completion, ‘With My Body‘ written by Nikki Gemmell. For anyone that is familiar with one of her previous novels, ‘The Bride Stripped Bare‘, you will know that this is actually considered soft porn by many readers – and boy, was it good! Gemmell has written quite a few others since then, one which I have read, ‘Shiver‘, that I also found very enjoyable (and full of sex).

– An arty shot of the book: I LOVE the cover design –

With My Body‘ is easy read, in the way it is laid out; in ten sections, with quick chapters and large, spaced-out type. On the other hand, it has elements that are more difficult to digest, as it is written in second person narration (you do this, you do that…). This seems to force the reader into the position of the main character who starts off as an unhappy housewife, locked in a boring marriage. Section two then goes back to when she was a lonely teenage girl, who is a bit lost, as her father is distant after he marries her step mother – who is quite blatantly, emotionally abusing her.

Each new chapter is a lesson, and there are 225 lessons in the book. It is not until section nine, that I felt I could relate, and perhaps empathise with the main character, as these last two sections are back to being written from an adult woman’s point of view. This  is when she finally begins to find herself and break free from that horrible teenager in her that she has been holding onto her whole life.

– 225 lessons: similar to chapters –

– Sections & quotes throughout the novel –

As you read through the book , you start to realise that perhaps what you’re reading, is in fact, what the main character has been referring to throughout the narrative – a ‘secret book’ that has many lessons about sexual endeavours and awakenings. For those of you who are a bit shy, be warned, there are quite a few FULL ON sex scenes described in quite some detail (I hear many ears pricking up). There are also many, many quotes throughout, and to be honest, a lot of these went straight over my head – no time for fancy quotes – get me some raunchy sex scenes please!

I noticed inside the front cover that it states, ‘Told in Nikki Gemmell’s distinctively lyrical style, this is beautiful, literary writing at its best. Exquisitely raw, emotional and bold, it is deeply resonant of the classic French erotic writings of Colette, Anais Nin and Marguerite Duras, but with a modern and provocative twist.’

I really enjoyed this book and would give it an 8 out of 10 – I’m now off to look up some of those French erotic writers.

Have you read any Nikki Gemmell? Do you enjoy a bit of sexy-time in novels? Or do you prefer ‘adventure’?



17 thoughts on “Love: Book Review – ‘With My Body’

  1. I have read ‘The Bride Stripped Bare’. For me it was as painful to read as ‘Eat, Pray, Love’. However, I finished them both. I don’t know if that makes me persistent, stubborn or stupid. I know Nathan would say ‘all three’ 🙂

    I am revisiting Gatsby this week (LOVED teaching that novel). I can’t wait for the movie!!

  2. Really enjoyed a Bride Stripped but read it such a long time ago. Have been wondering about the follow up.
    Am reading 50 Shades at the moment – easy read but very enjoyable.

    • I have just started 50 Shades too – really badly written after reading two beautifully-written books lately, but am persisting as I’ve heard it has some great sex in it 🙂 How is it going for you Kell?

  3. I would like to borrow this book please (if it’s your copy!).
    Kell, I too am just about to start 50 Shades to see what all the fuss is about! I really enjoyed reading the Sookie Stackhouse novels which were a great mix of adventure, excitement etc with some sexy time thrown in as well (thanks Kell!). x Ally

  4. Ally, you can help yourself to my bookcase tomorrow night when you are here. Bride Stripped is on it , if you haven’t already read it.


  5. I have trouble finding a spot for myself when there are only two options. Sex or adventure, you ask. Can I have both? I don’t think I can confine myself to a particular genre. Looking back at the books that have made a difference in my life, they really are a mixed lot. There are funny bits in Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series that still make me smile almost ten years after reading them. Then the book that actually kicked my butt and made me exercise was Natalie Angier’s “Woman: An intimate geography”. Alan Wiseman’s “The World Without Us” was the book that opened my eyes to the many, many ways we shape the planet. I also read fantasy, and the best of this genre is packed with sex and adventure. I am currently up to the 5th book in George RR Martin’s “Game of Thrones” series. When I’m done with that, I might just give Nikki Gemmell a go, just because of your review 

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