Thursday, 13 August 2015

Child of Pleasure by Gabriele D'Annunzio

"It seems to me- she said with closed eyes - that all the pores of my skin are like a million tiny mouths all craving yours, in spasms of desire to be chosen, the one envious of the other"

People are strange, multi-faceted creatures aren’t they? There are moments of such delightfully decadent, unadulterated lust in the Child Of Pleasure or Pleasure as it goes by in the edition I just finished reading. Now reading a little bit about the author, it is particularly interesting that the author whose character is so driven by the sensuous, ended up declaring war on Italy and attempting to set up an independent state in the lead role as ‘duce’ prefiguring the fascist movement. There’s no doubt he was a passionate character if his seductive prose is anything to go by. Seemingly he was hot headed politically too. A diverse background of wealth, illegitimacy, poetry and love affairs make his life story almost as tantalising reading as the novel.
Written way back in 1889, Pleasure,  has a dream like quality which is distinctly pleasurable. There are moments of pure bliss - i mean just read the quotation for goodness sake. It is more difficult to write a review of such a sensuous work when I'm sitting in the departures lounge with all the rampant humanity and feeling a little romantically rejected myself. Perhaps like D'Annunzio I run a little too hot and cold.

While much of the work reaches ecstatic heights, the protagonist is a fickle fellow and the ending hits suddenly. I kind of loved the agent provocateur reminiscent cover art too.

4 out of 5 spasms of desire.

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