By Josie Finlay
Great Sex Games
Today I’m going to take you on a rip-roaring ride through one of my favourite ever books: The Dorling Kindersley guide to Great Sex Games by Anne Hooper. I’m yet to use this book for real-life reference, but there are still about a thousand reasons why I’m obsessed with it.
If you’re familiar with Dorling Kindersley books, you might already find the concept of this book funny. Almost obsolete now, they’re publishers of illustrated reference books trademarked by their super-clear cut-out images against a white background, and no-nonsense serif text. O ‘90s kids, do you remember? Dorling Kindersley books taught us about the Egyptian pyramids, about farm animals, about spies, intestines and knights. Everything we know about ponds, astronomy and skeletons we learned from Dorl. You might describe their aesthetic as ‘sensible utopian scholastic’. What you wouldn’t describe them as, is sexy. Even the name sounds like an old Scottish grannie.
That’s the magical thing about Great Sex Games. Published in 2000, it thinks it’s a spicy little handbook, but it’s so extremely handbookish that there’s no real spice at all. Jarringly, Great Sex Games is written in the exact same tone as the Egyptian pyramid book I read in Year 3: simple, clear and instructional. The chapters are even concluded with summarising bullet points:
The image style is a surreal blend of noughties softcore porn and DK’s distinctive crisp photography style. J’adore:
The chapters include ‘Playing with Props’, ‘Getting Wet’ and ‘Dining with a Difference’, and at the end of each one Hooper has provided us with a very detailed description/prescription of an erotic role play. Here is an extract from my favourite, The Sultan:
‘Blindfold your woman and tell her you are taking her into the harem of a Turkish sultan. Since he is extremely ugly, she is not allowed to set eyes on him. Should she even be caught peeping, she will be under sentence of caning. In the harem she will be attended by eunuchs. These eunuchs must prepare her for the sultan. This preparation consists of oiling and anointing her body and then stimulating her genitals so that she is ready for the great king. Your job is to play the roles of the eunuchs and sultan.’
Respect to any multi-talented individuals out there who have managed to remember this whole scenario and then proceeded to act out what seems to be numerous roles at the same time, while looking hot.
Here’s a collection of some of my other fave bits.
- Phone your lover and tell her that she must report for her singing lesson at six o’clock sharp at your place. If she complains that she can’t sing, say that now she is about to learn.
- Paint a fruit platter on your partner’s body, using the curves and contours of the body to suggest fruits.
- You are Russian nobles travelling at high speed across the snowy landscape in your troika. Suddenly, brigands seize you and haul you from the sled. ‘Strip,’ they say.
- ‘Today,’ says the Games Master, ‘is your un-birthday.’
- Send an invitation that says ‘Esmeralda Diamond invites you to a banquet. Main course – Esmeralda Diamond.’
- Place a bagel around his penis and nibble it, being sure to brush his penis ‘accidentally’ with your tongue.
- Focus your imagination on a black wrought-iron four-poster bed with deep blue drapes that tumble over the struts and wind around the posts.
- Write ‘I love you’ with a feather over and over again on your partner’s naked breasts.
There’s even a section called ‘Christmas/Chanukah Sex Fun’, as well as a Thanksgiving-themed suggestion to truss your man up like a turkey, before massaging him with oil and ‘cooking’ him with a hair dryer. See? It’s a goldmine.
I thought about concluding with an SCA-themed role play featuring a pit full of shiny leather straplines – ‘Scamp me hard!’ – but I think we’ve had enough Extremely Specific erotic fantasies for one SCAB. My everlasting and sizzling thanks to Anne Hooper and Dorling for giving us the gift that is: Great Sex Games.