Before we go any further, let's get this out of the way. I want you to do three things for me.
One. Do not be offended by anything you read beyond this point.
Two. Leave your inhibitions at the door.
Three, and most important. Everything you see and hear from now on must remain between us. Now, let me take you to a place you've never been before...
Film student Catherine has a secret: a long-held dream, the source of all her sexual imaginings. A dream full of desires of which she is ashamed and embarrassed. And these vivid dreams eventually find their way into her everyday life. One night, at a club, she meets at a man who leads her into a strange world. And soon she is drawn toward the Juliette Society, an exclusive secret society in which all the deepest, darkest fantasies are explored. But for those who join this world, there is no turning back.
|Publisher:||Grand Central Publishing|
|Product dimensions:||5.10(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.90(d)|
About the Author
Sasha Grey is an actress, model, musician, and former pornographic actress. Her film and television work includes Steven Soderbergh's The Girlfriend Experience and HBO's Entourage. Grey is a member of industrial band aTelecine.
Read an Excerpt
The Juliette Society
By Sasha Grey
Grand Central PublishingCopyright © 2013 Sasha Grey
All rights reserved.
If I told you that a secret club exists whose members are drawn only from the most powerful people in society—the bankers, the super-rich, media moguls, CEOs, lawyers, law enforcement, arms dealers, decorated military personnel, politicians, government officials, and even distinguished clergy from the Catholic Church—would you believe me?
I'm not talking about the Illuminati. Or the Bilderberg Group, or Bohemian Grove, or any of those corny plot devices used to advance the commercial agendas of disingenuous conspiracy nut jobs.
No. On the face of it, this club is a lot more innocent.
On the face of it.
But not underneath.
This club, it meets up irregularly, at a secret location. Sometimes remote and sometimes hidden in plain sight. But never the same place twice. Usually not even in the same time zone.
And at these meetings, these people ... let's not beat around the bush, let's call them what they are, the Masters of the Universe. Or the Executive Branch of the Known Solar System. So these people, the Executives, they use these private gatherings as much-needed downtime from the important and stressful business of fucking the world up even more than it is already and dreaming up ever more sadistic and devious ways to torture, enslave, and impoverish the population.
And what do they do on their off days, when they want to relax?
It should be obvious.
I can tell you're not convinced. Let me put it like this. Have you ever met a garage mechanic who doesn't have a thing for cars? A professional photographer who never takes a shot unless the studio lights are on? A baker who doesn't eat cakes?
So these people, the Executives, and let's not mince words again, are professional fuckers.
They will fuck you to get one over on you. They will fuck you over to get to the top. They will fuck you out of your money, your freedom, and your time. And they'll continue fucking you until you're six feet deep and in the grave. And then some.
So what do they do when they're not doing that? Naturally ...
The other thing you need to know is this. Powerful people are like celebrities. They like to hang out together. All the time. They'll tell you till they're blue in the face that it's because no one else understands what it's like to be them other than people like them. The truth is they just don't want to mingle with the lower echelons, the hoi polloi, the uncouth and unwashed who take particular pleasure in witnessing the downfall of the rich and powerful by the one thing that always, without fail, stops them dead in their tracks: sex.
So these people, the Executives, the professional fuckers, they've worked out how to have all the sex they want, and indulge their most wild and debauched sexual fantasies, without the scandal. Which is a bit like someone claiming to have worked out how to fart without the smell, but anyway ... they do it behind closed doors. And all together. In secret.
Henry Kissinger once said that power is the ultimate aphrodisiac. By that time, he'd been creeping around the corridors of power long enough that he probably knew exactly what he was talking about. This place is the proof.
You could call it the Fortune 500 Fuck Club.
The league of Immoral Mother Fuckers.
The World Bang.
Or the Group of Sex.
They call it the Juliette Society.
Go ahead. Google it. You won't find anything about it. Absolutely nothing. It's that secret. But just so you're not completely in the dark, a little background and a little history.
The Juliette this society is named for is one of two characters—sisters, the other's called Justine—conceived (if that's the right word) by the Marquis de Sade, the 18th-century French nobleman, libertine, author, and revolutionary whose sexual adventures so outraged the noblesse oblige of the French aristocracy that he was locked up in the Bastille for obscenity. Which, in retrospect, was a really bad move because, sitting there in his cell, with nothing better to do than jerk off day and night, the Marquis was stimulated to create even more and greater obscenities. Just to prove a point.
During his incarceration he would write the greatest work of erotic literature the world has ever known. The 120 Days of Sodom. The only book ever written that outdoes the Bible for sexual perversion and violence. And almost as long. It was the Marquis, of course, who shouted out of the window of his cell in the Bastille to the crowds below that they should storm the place and so, inadvertently, started the French Revolution.
But back to Juliette. She's the lesser known of the two sisters. Not because she's the quiet one. Oh no, far from it. See, Justine is a bit of a drag and a prude, a compulsive attention-seeker who plays the victim till you're more than sick of her. She's like one of those celebrities who harp on about the disease of drug and sex addiction and hang on Dr. Drew's every word, tirelessly promoting their virtue to the public by appearing on every rehab reality series going.
And Juliette? Juliette is absolutely unrepentant in her lust for sex and murder, and any carnal delight that she hasn't yet tasted. She fucks and kills and kills and fucks, and sometimes does both at the same time. And always gets away with it and never has to pay a price for her indiscretions or her crimes.
Maybe now you start to get my drift. Maybe now you understand why this secret society, the Juliette Society, might not be as entirely innocent as it seems.
And if I told you that I'd managed to penetrate, pardon my French, the inner circle of this club, would you believe me?
It's not as if I belong there. I'm a full-time third-year college student. I major in film. I'm no one special. I'm a regular girl with all the same regular needs and desires in life as everybody else.
Love. Security. Happiness.
And fun, I love to have fun. I like to dress well and look good but I don't have an expensive taste in clothes. I drive a small hand-me-down Honda hatchback that my parents gave me for my eighteenth birthday and always seems to have random crap lying on the backseat that I never find time to fully clear out. It was the car I packed all my belongings into when I moved out of home to go to college. I left behind friends who I've known since childhood; some I've outgrown and find it hard to relate to anymore, others I feel will always be part of my life, and I've made a whole set of new ones who have opened my eyes and expanded my horizons.
And, at this point, I'm not going to come across like such a smart-ass anymore. Now I'm going to start sounding all homey and humble. Because, in truth, the closest I had ever come to the seat of power was in my head.
I have this recurring sexual fantasy. No, it's not about fucking Donald Trump in his private jet over Saint-Tropez at thirty-five thousand feet. I can't think of anything that would gross me out more. My fantasy, it's much more down to earth—more mundane and intimate than that.
A few times a week I'll go to pick up my boyfriend after work and sometimes, when he's there late and ends up being the last one to lock up, I fantasize about fooling around a bit with him in his boss's office—but we've never actually done it. Still, a girl can dream, can't she?
His boss is a senator. Or rather, a successful lawyer and would-be senator. And Jack, my boyfriend, is a staffer in his campaign office. As well as being an economics major. Which doesn't leave a whole lot of time for us to get together because, by the time his day is finished, he's usually so beat that he falls asleep on the couch almost the second he's kicked off his shoes. Mornings he's up early again for class and there usually isn't even time for a quickie. And you know what they say about Jack and work and no play.
So I fantasize about playing my part as the dutiful girlfriend and I have this all planned out. I'll dress for the occasion. Stockings and heels with my favorite double-breasted khaki trench coat, just like the one Anna Karina wears in Godard's Made in U.S.A. And underneath, some lingerie; maybe a sheer black bra and panties and a matching garter belt and suspenders. Or I'll go topless and wear knee-high white stockings and these cute little pink polka-dot panties I have that seem to drive him wild. Or else just heels and bare legs with nothing else but a slinky cream silk slip or a chiffon babydoll. But always a smear of ruby-red lipstick. Got to have the red lipstick. A girl's best friend.
The campaign office is in a storefront downtown. There are windows on all sides and the lights stay on all night to make sure that everybody who goes past sees the line of identical red, white, and black posters pasted along the windows with Jack's boss mugging for the camera under big bold type that reads VOTE ROBERT DEVILLE.
So the only place we could get a little privacy is the utility closet, the bathroom, or the office that Bob—he likes everyone to call him Bob—uses when he's there, which isn't very often. It's tucked right at the back, near the exit to the parking lot, so he can sneak in and out without having to waltz in through the front entrance, on the street, in full view of everybody.
I'm pretty sure there must be at least a few people in that office whose kink is to fuck in the bathroom or the closet during working hours and hope they don't get caught. But it's not mine, and certainly not when we have the run of the place to ourselves. And anyway, Jack usually lets me in the back door, which leads directly out into the lot where I park my car and the office is just ... right there.
I should just say this again, because I really don't want you to get the wrong idea: We've never actually done this. We've never even discussed it, Jack and I. I'm not even sure he'd be into it. But in my fantasy, as soon as we get in that office, and the door's closed and the lights are off, all the kissing and cuddling is over, I'd take control.
I'd push him backward into the chair, Bob's plush leather swivel chair, and we'd do it right there, in the "seat of power." I'd tell him not to get up, not to touch himself, not to move an inch, and do a little striptease, to show myself off for him. First undo the belt of my coat and slip it off my shoulder so he can see some skin. Then quickly throw one side open, keeping the other pressed close against my body, giving him just a glimpse of what's underneath. I'd turn my back, let the coat drop to the floor, bend over and touch my toes so he knows exactly what he's going to get if he's a good boy and does what he's told.
His cock is hard before I've even got his pants off. And when I do, I can see it bulging against the cotton fabric of his boxer briefs.
Then it's time for some close contact. But he's still not allowed to touch. I'd position myself in front of the chair, straddle his legs with my back to him, and grip the handles of the seat as I brush and bump and grind my butt, first soft and then hard, into his crotch. Then lower myself down onto it, hold him between the cheeks of my ass, and clench, feeling it flex and twitch and grow against the curve of my ...
But I'm getting off the point. The point is, I had no business whatsoever being there, at the Juliette Society, among those people. And I didn't exactly answer an ad on Craigslist or go to a job interview to gain entry to it.
Let's just say I had a talent, a persuasion, a hunger.
And I was spotted.
We could argue back and forth forever about nature or nurture but this talent, it's not something I was born with. At least not that I'm aware of. No, this is something I realized. But it has been with me for a long time, hard-coded, buried like a switch in a sleeper agent, and only recently turned on.
And saying all that, how do I even begin to explain what happened that night? The first night I encountered the Juliette Society.CHAPTER 2
The first thing we ever learned in film class is this:
Plot is always subservient to character.
Always, always, always and without fail.
Any creative writing teacher worth his salt will tell you exactly the same thing and make you repeat it over and over and over until it's as recognizable to you as your own name.
As a general point of principle governing a fictional world, that's as immutable as Einstein's theory of relativity. Without it the entire fabric falls apart.
Take any classic movie (or any movie, really), strip it down to the basics, and you'll see what I mean.
OK, Vertigo, a movie that every film student like me is expected to know inside and out. Jimmy Stewart's character, Scottie, is a detective whose single- minded and dogged pursuit of the truth, coupled with a crippling fear of heights and an obsession for a dead blonde that borders on necrophilia, are the very things—his Achilles' heel, as it were—that blindside him to the elaborate con to which he falls prey.
Let's assume instead that Scottie was a cop with a sweet tooth. It would have been more realistic. But it just wouldn't have worked. He'd be a cop drawn inexorably to the donut stand instead of the femme fatale, and Hitchcock wouldn't have a movie.
There you have it. Plot subservient to character.
Let's take another example. Citizen Kane. Film critics love to call it the greatest movie ever made, and for good reason, because it's all in there. Subtext, art direction, mise en scène, all the things that make a great movie into a work of art and not an extended commercial for Microsoft, Chrysler, and Frito-Lay, the way movies seem to be these days.
So Citizen Kane, the story of a news mogul, Charles Foster Kane, felled by hubris and ambition—the self-same qualities that fueled his drive to the top, qualities derived from an overwhelming mommy complex that dwarfs his achievements, damns his marriage, and, ultimately, destroys his life.
Condemned by this vicious circle that reaches to the very core of his being, poor old Charlie dies alone and unloved, simply because he could never detach from his mommy's tit.
Or maybe not her tit ... because the last word Kane utters with his dying breath, when his grip loosens and he drops that snow globe—or crystal ball, or whatever it was, in which he failed to see his immediate future, that his life was not just fucked but over—that word, Rosebud, was, so legend has it, a sly reference inserted by Orson Welles to the pet name used by William Randolph Hearst (the real Charles Foster Kane) to describe his mistress's vagina.
Rosebud. The first word heard in the movie and the last one seen, painted on a child's sled tossed into a furnace, as the flames lick at it and peel the word away to nothing.
Once you know that little tidbit of information, you'll never watch Citizen Kane again the same way. You hear Rosebud, you see Rosebud. You think "vagina."
You think Orson Welles might have been trying to tell us something? I think he was trying to tell us this: Charles Foster Kane was a real motherfucker. And that, not surprisingly, was the source of all his problems.
And again. Plot always subservient to character.
Don't forget it.
Just as an aside, there is one type of movie, and only one, that doesn't conform. One genre that flagrantly breaks the rule. Not only breaks it but also turns it on its head, just because it can, and it doesn't give a fuck: the porn movie.
But let's not go there.
Anyhow, this rule, I've realized it applies as much to reality as it does to fiction. That it's not only in the movies that what happens to us is subservient to who we are, how we act and why, but also the stories of our lives, the choices we make and the paths we take.
This path I'm on, you can't see it. It's not a yellow brick road, the lost highway, or a two-lane blacktop. And I don't even know that it's a road I've been traveling along until I reach my destination, look back at how far I've come, and realize that all this time the choices I made, the roads I took, were leading me to this place.
So here's the deal. In order to explain how I ended up at the Juliette Society, I have to start at the beginning.
Not right at the very beginning. We'll save all the embarrassing baby pictures for another day. And all those apocryphal childhood memories that locate the origins of traumas that have stayed with me ever since. Like the time I pissed my panties at Sunday school while Sister Rosetta was telling us about Noah and his ark.
So, no, not right at the beginning, but close to it.
And I need to tell you something about myself, my character, my Achilles' heel. I have to start with Marcus, my teacher, on whom I have a secret crush.
Excerpted from The Juliette Society by Sasha Grey. Copyright © 2013 Sasha Grey. Excerpted by permission of Grand Central Publishing.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The book begins interestingly enough. It follows Catherine, your average girl-next-door film student who lives with her boyfriend. She has a crush on her professor and soon befriends a fellow student who claims to have a relationship with said professor and is captivated by her stories. Soon, Catherine finds herself in the world of sex and debauchery lead by her new friend. However, somewhere along the book, the story gets jumbled and confusing. The ending was highly disappointing and didn't make much sense. Juliette Society was a quick, sexy, and easy read, but not the most well written thing out there.
This book was a major disappointment. This is not the story of an adventure into the forbidden world of lust. It's one girls self involved tail of how horny she is, to the point of self destruction.
Read first 2 chapters, thought the book had some promise. As the story continued, however, you got the feeling the writer didn't know how to bridge aspects of it together. The ending was disappointing and felt rushed.
I heard Sasha Grey promoting her book "The Juliette Society" on local radio show and I just had to check it out. This book was so sexy hott. It was a good story surrounding steamy sex scene after sex scene. Sasha Grey did an excellent job in her debut book. I truly hope she will continue to great erotica.
DON'T WASTE YOUR MONEY OR TIME!! Nothing about the story makes much sense. There are tangents after tangents about anything and everything that has nothing to do with what is happening. I skipped over a lot of the book to try and follow the story line. I still am not clear on what this book is really about. I was not impressed!
I hated this book...it made me sad, annoyed and disgusted at the whole idea of it all. Do not buy it...waste of time and valuable brain cells.
Thoughtfully written and more mature than 50 Shades. Great characterization and a well rounded concept. Makes it easy to to believe that the Juliette Society does exist.