"Another FemDom magnum opus! Elise's best work to date!"
Approximately every three years Elise Sutton has bequeathed us FemDom aficionados with a magnum opus dedicated to the female domination lifestyle. What separates Ms Sutton’s books from other FemDom tomes is the authenticity of her research. Although I find her books to be highly erotic, what distinguishes them from others is the way she masterfully uses the stimulating life experiences of genuine people to flesh out the didactic component of her books.
Ms Sutton has a gift in creating a perfect blend to equally teach and entertain her readers. “Searching for Wanda” is her latest, and in my humble opinion, her best work to date.
The primary theme of “Searching for Wanda” is masochism but you don’t have to be a masochist to relate to this book. No matter if you’re interested in female domination, male submission, female sadism, male masochism, fetishism, feminism, or you’re purely fascinated with distinctive expressions of human sexuality, you will enjoy “Searching for Wanda”.
Ms Sutton’s research incorporates the wisdom from some of the great minds of the past two centuries as she examines masochism. Johann Jakob Bachofen, Richard von Krafft-Ebing, Sigmund Freud, Helene Deutsch, Theodor Reik, Gilles Deleuze, Carl Jung, Alfred Kinsey and many others are referenced, with a particular emphasis on the works of Theodor Reik.
Notwithstanding, Ms Sutton is never shy about injecting her own observations and opinions, even when her estimations differ from past and present Psychologists, Psychiatrists and Sociologists.
The first half of “Searching for Wanda” is primarily about the life of Leopold von Sacher-Masoch. His life story is most remarkable and I found it rather clever the way Ms Sutton categorized the chapters in the first half of her book based on the FemDom relationships Sacher-Masoch had with the women in his life, beginning with his adolescent connection with his Aunt Xenobia and continuing through to his final years and his relationship with his second wife, Hulda Meister.
As she shares the particulars of Sacher-Masoch’s life, Ms Sutton intermingles in bona fide experiences of current day FemDom couples who’ve had to deal with the effects of masochism.
The second half of “Searching for Wanda” uses four fictitious albeit famous female sadists, created by the fantasies of men within literature and film spanning from 1927 to 1982 (those being Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz’s sensual female sadist, Persy; Jac Lenders’ psychological sadist, Hilda Mansell; Dave Friedman’s hardcore sadist, Ilsa: She Wolf of the SS; and the mysterious Dr. Karl Steiner’s extreme sadist, Anneliese Helm), to further examine masochism while at the same time exploring sadism within women. My favorite chapter in the book was ‘Societal Evolution and the Emergence of Wanda’ where Ms Sutton looks at female sadism and shares the results of a most interesting survey she conducted with forty-three dominant women to gauge their personal interests in the FemDom lifestyle.
The book is sandwich between two letters, the first chapter being a well-crafted and thought-provoking letter written by a masochist, addressed to Ms Sutton, seeking her opinion. The final chapter is her intelligent reply, encouraging him (and the readers of the book) to strive for a balanced FemDom relationship that is based on loving female authority.
I’ve greatly enjoyed all three of Elise Sutton’s books and “Searching for Wanda” is no exception. I highly recommend it. --- Jay Bay
"Elise Sutton has scored yet another triumph with her latest book"
A departure from her previous oeuvres, which focused on men seeking Loving Female Authority, Searching for Wanda addresses the male masochist’s frustrating quest for that rara avis, the elusive female sexual sadist, Unloving Female Authority incarnate.
Ms. Sutton’s concept is brilliant and novel. She takes as her point of departure the remarkable sexual biography of Leopold von Sacher-Masoch, the masochistic author of Venus in Furs. Her examination of his lifelong search for his sadistic ideal functions as case study, object lesson, and cautionary tale.
The text is studded with relatable accounts of real-life contemporary DS relationships—chock full of arousing details. I was particularly engrossed by her treatment of the pitfalls and perils inherent in trying to extract sadism from a reluctant partner, as supported by the life of Sacher-Masoch and interviews with the partners of masochistic men.
Ms. Sutton has long devoted herself to facilitating FemDom relationships. Many of my submissive clients consider her previous books as the definitive how-to manuals on coaxing out the inner Dommes in their partners. Ms. Sutton brings the same pragmatism, sensitivity, insight, and wisdom gleaned from personal experience to her analysis of the plight of the masochist and his significant other.
With impressive erudition and breadth of mind, Ms. Sutton culls from the fields of anthropology, sociology, psychology, philosophy, literature, and film, and cites such great thinkers as Freud, Jung, Krafft-Ebing, Rousseau, Reik, and Sartre. But this is no dry-as-dust academic tome. It manages to be scholarly and also hot, like your favorite sexy librarian. A compulsive read. I literally couldn’t put the book down.
(As an aside: although most civilians might be vaguely familiar with Venus in Furs, it is curious that the very interesting life story of the author has not received attention-- until now. Kudos to Elise Sutton for unearthing this gem and making it relevant. I will be a star at cocktail parties with my new anecdotes. Who knew that Sacher-Masoch’s first wife changed her name to “Wanda” after the book’s sadistic heroine? Or that Sacher-Masoch’s fetishistic attraction to fur might have derived from an early, highly charged erotic experience with his beautiful aunt?)
--- Jennifer Hunter (founder of The Jennifer Hunter Group)
A great Sunday read!
The notion of "femdom" was brought to my attention by my friends who suggested various books on the subject, some less serious than others. This book is more serious in many ways and references Venus in Furs. The Wanda character represents the ultimate dominant woman. And a lot of the book focuses on the submissive male and his search, meaning it also references the author of Venus in Furs. I enjoyed this book. The writing is smooth and easy to take. Like I said, a good Sunday read. My kinky friends would enjoy it -- in fact I'll pass it on to them. --- Cristina Ross (Barnes and Noble) _______________________________________________________________________________________________
The book is wonderful!
I recently received my copy of “Searching for Wanda” in the mail. I began to skim through it, not intending to read it for a few days because of my schedule. Where did the time go? I couldn’t put it down. The book is wonderful. Thank you, Elise, for bringing clarity to our lifestyle. You are an ambassador for FemDom couples the world over.
In addition, I just want to say how honored I am that a few of my observations were included in this book. Elise’s strength is in her willingness to allow other women to share their beliefs. --- Victoria
Informative, interesting, very readable!
Dear Ms Sutton, I just downloaded and read your latest book. I found it informative, interesting and very readable. It spoke to me in many ways and gave me a new and refreshing look at a subject that has preoccupied me most of my life. Thank you so very much for having written this book. I sense I will likely read it again. It has helped me to some extent understand who I really am and to grasp my make up. To hear of the experiences of others also helped me understand things about myself that I have possibly not fully understood or have kept repressed and allowed to manifest in other ways. Again, thank you very much. --- I.D.
“Searching for Wanda” is a fabulous book. Years ago I read “Masochism in Modern Man” by Theodor Reik and “Coldness and Cruelty” by Gilles Deleuze. Both are excellent but most people would find them dull and dry. “Searching for Wanda” references these and other insightful studies of masochism but Elise livens up the subject by adding erotica to the mix through the infusion of real life stories and experiences of past and modern day masochists and FemDom couples.
Some of the stories that people share are downright hot, with such topics broached as humiliation, corporal punishment, caning, bullwhipping, bondage, restraints, cuckolding, male chastity, Mistress/slave contracts, boot worship, fetishes, financial domination, C/B torture, and many others. Nonetheless, the stories shared have a purpose and I came away from reading this book with a positive feeling about my sexuality and where society is headed. “Searching for Wanda” works on many levels. --- Alan R.