Unmentionable

Unmentionable

The Victorian Lady's Guide to Sex, Marriage, and Manners

Book - 2016
Average Rating:
10
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"A scandalously honest guide to the secrets of Victorian womanhood. "If Unmentionable does not secure the Pulitzer Prize for Most Fascinating Book Ever, the whole gig is rigged. Therese Oneill opens the doors to everything we secretly wanted to know about the Victorian era, but didn't think to ask. Knickers with no crotches? Check. Arsenic as a facial scrub? Check. The infrequency of bathing and the stench of the Victorian human body? Check mate"-- provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Little, Brown and Company, 2016
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9780316357913
031635791X
Branch Call Number: 305.4209 ON29U 2016
Characteristics: viii, 307 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm

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LPL_PolliK Sep 26, 2017

I love historical romances, but there are so many things NOT covered in those stories. Well, this book covers them. And EWWWWWWW! Funny (and gross) facts, but some really insightful historical facts about practices and people you might not have heard of. Did I mention funny? Oneill is hilarious. If you don’t like frank and salty talk, this book isn’t for you. But if you do, read it and then come talk to me about it!

j
Jediflower
Jul 26, 2017

Although I enjoyed reading this for the information it provided, I did not prefer the humorous almost sarcastic tone of the author. I know she was trying to be funny but wasn't for me.

a
abcDena
Jul 06, 2017

Unmentionable: The Victorian Lady's Guide to Sex, Marriage, and Manners is the perfect blend of #history, #humour and #pictures! I love #illustrations, #vintageads and #historical documents, so I gobbled this up. The best parts are on #toilets and #menstruation  Honestly, the past sounds horrifying -- completely. This book took me back to some research I did on 17th century customs and what I remember first is all the FILTH. Most people lived in squalor an even rich people smelled bad. The stuff about bodily stench was a bit much, but I learned things about #ambergris that I never knew! Take a minute to thank your higher power today for being born in the here and now. Especially you, ladies. Awesome book. I'm gonna buy it for my own shelves.

o
ownedbydoxies
May 21, 2017

Absolutely hilarious! And also educational. It's a great book written with great voice and style.

JCLMaryanaK May 11, 2017

Gross and funny, this book made me grateful for all the modern conveniences I often take for granted. Oneill acts as tour guide and mentor to the 21st century woman time-traveling in the Victorian era.

AL_KATI Apr 24, 2017

I loved every single page--it's chockablock full of facts and amusing anecdotes that will make you want to stay in the 21st century. It's like the 19th century version of going out for cocktails with your best girlfriends.

MomoT Mar 21, 2017

This book is the perfect antidote to every "I wish I lived in the times of Little House on the Prairie-Anne of Green Gables-Little Women" compulsion you have ever felt. Snarky, hilarious and full to the brim with feminist observations, bizarre facts, and positively outrageous quotes from contemporary sources, this is an enjoyable, educational read. Please write more books, Therese O'Neill, I beg of you.

Beatricksy Dec 16, 2016

It's a comedy written in the 2nd person perspective, which I had NOT anticipated. It stops the book reading like a dusty tome, but it does mean that, no matter how well researched it is (and it does seem to be beautifully researched), I still have niggling doubts about authenticity. Because I'm one of those people utterly spoiled by academia who can't have any fun. Which is a shame, because this book is SO FUN. And jampacked with more information than I can absorb. As it wraps up, all the overwhelming details and all, I can’t believe this is how people survived day to day life. And yet I totally can and I love it.

t
TheresaAJ
Dec 12, 2016

Oneill brings a jolt of reality to the modern reader who thinks that living in the Victorian Age would be a time and place of simpler joys. Does she have a surprise for you? Tackling everything from lack of personal cleanliness to dangerous beauty products to wifely expectations, Oneill reveals the mores and practices of the time through books, magazines, and illustrations that were mainly written by men. Her snarky modern captions for the Victorian illustrations are especially delightful. You'll never appreciate the 21st century more than after finishing this book.

w
wiredonjava
Dec 10, 2016

Fascinating account of the Victorian era that was about as romantic as a bad case of body odour. Very funny folklore covering a variety of awkward topics that I can't mention here.

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