Whip Smart by Melissa Febos
A Memoir

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A dark, wild, powerful memoir about a young woman’s transformation from college student to professional dominatrix

While a college student at The New School, Melissa Febos spent four years working as a dominatrix in a midtown dungeon. In poetic, nuanced prose she charts how unchecked risk-taking eventually gave way to a course of self-destruction. But as she recounts crossing over the very boundaries that she set for her own safety, she never plays the victim. In fact, the glory of this memoir is Melissa’s ability to illuminate the strange and powerful truths that she learned as she found her way out of a hell of her own making. Rest assured; the reader will emerge from the journey more or less unscathed.


About Melissa Febos

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Melissa Febos is co-curator and host of the Mixer Reading and Music Series, she holds an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College, and teaches at SUNY Purchase College and The Gotham Writers' Workshop
Published February 27, 2010 by Thomas Dunne Books. 289 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Health, Fitness & Dieting, Professional & Technical, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

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Eventually her dual life began to destroy her, and her intellectual arrogance gave way to the realization that “my compulsions were simply stronger than my will.” Her drug life was reduced to locking herself in her room with “a glass of water, a bag of puke, and a coffee can full of pee in the cl...

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"Whip Smart" (Thomas Dunne Books, $24.99, 288 pages), by Melissa Febos.

Mar 12 2010 | Read Full Review of Whip Smart: A Memoir

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Jul 02 2010 | Read Full Review of Whip Smart: A Memoir


Febos believes her specialness renders it impossible for her to live within the confines of the ‘normal world,’ and as life goes on around her, as her housemates study for their final exams, as commuters rush by her on the train, she is ‘choked’ with envy at the ease in which they live a life tha...

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Once Febos takes the story there quite a large part of the book is dedicated to its discussion.

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