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The Autobiography of a Flea

3.31  ·  Rating details ·  344 ratings  ·  40 reviews
The Autobiography of a Flea was initally published in 1887, and inspired a film directed by one of the first female pornographic directors from the 1970s. Starring the inimitable John C Holmes, it is recognised as a classic example of the x-rated genre.

Can men of the cloth ever escape temptation?

A young maiden, Bella, and her boyfriend Charlie consummate their passion unde
...more
Paperback, Perennial Forbidden Classics, 192 pages
Published January 19th 2009 by Harper Perennial (first published 1887)
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Average rating 3.31  · 
Rating details
 ·  344 ratings  ·  40 reviews


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Esmeralda Rupp-Spangle
filthy filthy filthy.
Rape, incest, priestly naughtiness, orgies, bisexuality, and pretty much anything else you can think of, but with this absurd, florid victorian laguage that's totally excessive and silly. Kind of awesome, kind of horrible.

Read at your own risk.
Irene
Mar 17, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Made my ears turn red.
Sheryl Tribble
The Goodreads write up for this book includes what I most hate about pornography in the statement:

"Through a casual observer, we see all that society's hypocrises and vice on display. " (That's a cut and paste; the misspelling and incoherency come straight from the original.)

Uh, actually, no, we don't, at least in the one with Bella and Father Ambrose. We don't even see society's hypocrisies regarding sexuality on display. It might be argued that we see the hypocrisies of a few extremely atypi
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Marsha
This book has a blurb on the cover gushing that it is “Probably the best, but certainly the most famous erotic novel ever written”, which is certainly flattery at its most outrageous.

The Autobiography of a Flea purports to be the viewings of the sexual antics of Bella, et al., via the viewpoint of the aforementioned louse. However, there is very little of a flea’s life about this; it’s merely a conceit to regale jaded readers with descriptions of rape, gang rape, incest, sodomy and sacrilege. Th
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Sally
Jun 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
This is pure Victorian era erotica. It's certainly full of engines, machines and steel but it's written in a fun way, taking the piss out of every conceivable taboo from gleefully rampant Catholic priests, to wanton girls, to incest. There are no cautious euphamisms at work either, it seems to try to cram every conceivable name for sex and genitals that it can into the limited number of pages.

Authobiography of a flea is not for the faint hearted or anyone looking out for reasons to be shocked. I
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Samantha Penrose
Nov 13, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This book was smutty.
Judging by the language, "anonymous" was a man!
I wouldn't advise people against reading this, but I wouldn't call it good. I certainly don't feel inclined to run out and look for more "erotic literature" to read...

**I am confused though, I purchased this through NOOK, on my ipod, and the version that I read appears to be this version (selected for my review), however, the synopsis here on goodreads describes a main character named, Bella. The story that I read had an innocen
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Suzy
Sep 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Forget Fifty Shades of Grey, this book was written in 1887 and is the original erotic novel. It is cleverly written from the perspective of a flea, who is privy to some very interesting events surrounding a young girl named Bella. The book is so debauched that it was written anonymously (the author was later discovered to be a wealthy London lawyer). Warning though; it is not for the feint of heart and contains some very confrontational subject matter.
Juanita
Jul 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great novella of debauchery from the viewpoint of a flea riding the wind (and bodies) through France. Everyone gets satisfied in this text. Great fun and highly erotic. From local priests cavorting with widows and young tail to the eroticism of everyday marital relationships, this book has it all. A must read for the lover of erotic fiction.
Richard
Basically this is Victorian pornography, but pretty well stands the test of time as a sort of erotic satire, if you like this sort of thing. It's certainly in a lighter vein and has some quite amusing moments. (Written from the point of view of a flea upon a young woman.)
Jeanette
Jan 04, 2009 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Have this book, need to read
David Baldwin
Victorian erotica. I was amused at first, but eventually found the whole thing a bit tedious.
Briana Thompson
Filthy and disturbing but rather biting in its acerbic wit. I certainly wouldn't recommend reading this book for the sex but the humorous narration of the flea makes it well worth the read.
Olutobi Odunubi
Decent. Funny sometimes. A tad to repetitive, though...
Perry Whitford
Pete n' Dud style smut originally published anonymously but thought to have been written by a Victorian solicitor named Stanislaus. (Female clients would not have liked the idea of him handling their briefs.)

The plot, if you can dignify a succession of profane sexual exploits as such, involves the debasement of a fourteen year old girl named Bella by Father Ambrose, a cassocked satyr blessed with an impressive instrument of benediction.

Pederasty, sacrilege, incest - all the taboos are despoiled
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Lindsay Wiggs
This is erotica and has to be taken for what it is. That said, there is no way to hide the fact that it was written by men, for men. The language used to speak of the female characters, the twisted view of rape and incest, and a host of other factors are easily offensive. Looking beyond the sheer magnitude of sexual scenes, there is a plot that keeps the attention. Therefore, I granted it 3 stars. To be honest, I began skimming over the repetitive sex scenes a quarter of the way through just to ...more
Booklovinglady
Taken with a pinch of salt, well, several pinches actually, this is a (very) funny read :-) You do need to consider the date of first publication though, but with that at the back of your mind, the novel, or novella, is really able to make one laugh.
Mele
Just consider this book another foray into my research of Victorian era erotica.
Chris Chase
If you like to see the clergy in full view this book is for you. The view of the flea is an interesting prospective. Adults taking advantage of adolescents
Daryl Moore
Disgusting, but erotic.
Lilith Duat
Dec 09, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
You can read my review here: https://lilithlikestowatch.blogspot.c...

The movie was better.
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Bernie Gourley
Nov 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
“The Autobiography of a Flea” is a historical work of erotica first published in the late 19th century anonymously, and later was attributed to Stanislas de Rhodes. Like the works of the Marquis de Sade, the book is simultaneously a socio-political commentary and philosophical novel. While the erotic elements tend to not be as extreme and perverse as Sade’s work, it shares in common a philosophy of society and a disdain for the clergy and the aristocracy / upper class (Sade’s work was earlier an ...more
Lori L.
Unexpected content lol! It's an erotic story, fairly short, but actually pretty interesting; although, I do not normally read this sort of material.
Hannah
Apr 06, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Better than expected. For Victorian erotica it isn't bad. But, that being said... it's still victorian erotica
Vishy
Apr 13, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shouldn't have read this. SMH.
Kristina
[sobbing _on _the _sofa.gif]
Terrapene
Aug 22, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: erotica
As the title suggests, the story is told by a flea who resides on the person of a sixteen year old girl named Bella. It is the story of Bella, her uncle/guardian, a few members of the Catholic Church clergy, and another girl and her father. First published in 1887, it is part of a genre that might be called 19th century Victorian erotica. There is a plot that includes deception, but it is mainly the erotic adventures of the characters. If you enjoy books of this type, you may enjoy this one.
Alonso
Aug 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
a must read. descriptions are very full in detail. it is funny, frank, and spares no expense in the use of sexual adjectives. i'd like to read it in english at some point.
Leah Angstman
Feb 21, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I cannot help it. This one is worth reading just for the classic historical eroticism. Sexual encounters with priests and horses? What's not to love or laugh at?
Caty
Aug 12, 2010 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Available thru library
pink lapis
Aug 03, 2012 rated it it was ok
a book full of disappointments
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