Friday, September 21, 2012

Naked Truth by Rachel Francis published by Penguin.


The sex industry in New Zealand occurs in dark back streets, busy street corners, strip clubs, massage parlours, brothels, and all places where gritty real sexual encounters occur.  This is Rachel’s second book, a book where she endeavours to share with all of us the truth and reality of this industry.  Through her interviews with a wide range of people Rachel wants to demonstrate the validity of what these people do for a living.

Sex workers can be entertainment as we see in night clubs and strip bars, while they can also be a safe sexual outlet for people who would otherwise be tempted force sex on someone in their lives.

At the book’s launch a wonderful variety of humanity was on show. These were the people from the book.  The female with long blond hair and great tits on show had grown up to be a farming bloke from provincial NZ, the couple who run a swingers club, young and old sex workers, the memory of Flora Mackenzie and Carmen Rupe who polarised our county’s attitudes to entertainment at the sexual boundary of society.

The interviews are revealing and engaging.  Rachel’s own self comes through in each of the introductions.  This is a woman who has lived life and is proud to be able to share her world with readers who have only glimpsed this one previously.

And then we come across our community’s hero, Miss Ribena.  Miss Ribena tells us she learnt to be drug and alcohol free from her first Madam.  This self control is what delivers spot on performances and a caring person to clubs like Family.  By challenging norms and creating allure she also gives a role model to us all.

Go on, do buy and read this book for its salacious details of the sex industry, but also for the wonderful stories of our fellow Kiwis.

Reviewed by Andrew Rumbles,