CALLING ALL COLLECTORS!

Don’t Touch by Anne-Gabriel Meusnier de Querlon  is a fun, lively, first-ever English translation of an 18th century French libertine novella with a narrative technique that drops the soutanes, lifts the wimples, and pushes the boundaries of the novel – 150 years ahead of its time. Erotic, sacrilegious, funny and infectious, it is the “amorous true story,” as told by herself, Saint Nitouche, a Carmelite Extern Nun, whose “taste for pleasure and vocation for retreat” bump up against each other in surprisingly modern and eternally scandalous ways in the convent and in the bawdy house. Still scandalous today – if you’re easily scandalized, don’t read this book! – it is like Thérèse Finds Happiness, but without the philosophy.

This is the first volume in the Pocket Erotica series –  collectible, compact (4×6-inch) paperbacks from New urge Editions. CLICK HERE to order your copy on Amazon.

Long Live Dirty Books!

I first encountered Thérèse the Philosopher many years ago in a used bookshop in San Francisco. I discovered a long out-of-print hardcover copy (“second printing”) published by Grove Press in  1970. The translation was by “H. F. Smith,” although the name does not appear on the front cover—conceivably a pseudonym for Grove’s legendary editor Richard Seaver who was rumored to have translated several controversial French novels for the avant-garde publisher.

Admittedly, in my 20’s, the 18th century held little historical interest for me, it was the sexual episodes that beckoned. The graphic sex acts also explain the book’s popularity in France in 1748, as the novel was the equivalent of a New York Times bestseller during the “Age of Enlightenment.”  Upon its publication, Thérèse was of course banned for its libertine amorality and copies were ordered destroyed. And surely the story’s humorous approach must have pissed off the censors as well. (Author Jean-Baptiste de Boyer, Marquis d’Argens had previously authored several satirical, non-pornographic works).

With the Grove edition in mind, this spring I decided a modern translation was called for — one which emphasized the tale’s humor and made the text more “user-friendly.” New Urge Editions  commissioned the talents of Richard Robinson, who has produced the translation we’d dreamed of. We retitled the book Thérèse Finds Happiness and designed a cover** to better capture the novel’s innate charm. Indeed, even the notorious Marquis de Sade described the original novel as “…a charming performance…”

A month of blood, sweat, and tears went into the book’s interior design and we think it captures the flavor of the period without impersonating it. Note that the title page (shown here at left) states “Printed in the Hague.” To confuse the censors, early editions were undated and featured mock foreign imprints such as “The Hague” and “Londres.” Publishers and printers back then were quite witty, unlike the somber, self-important snobs on the scene today.

I’m proud to say Thérèse Finds Happiness stands as our favorite classical work of erotic literature, and one I trust readers and collectors will enjoy.

 

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** featuring a detail  from“The Swing” by the great Thomas Rowlandson

That’s enough of this nonsense!

No, there can never be enough.

So grab this gem while you can… an anthology of nonsense in all its merry infestations, from subtle emanations to cartoon lunacy. Packed with stories, songs, art, & poetry by these inspired misfits: Mark Axelrod, Tom Barrett, Angie Brenner, Ken Brown, Norman Conquest, Caroline Crépiat, Haley Dahl, Farewell Debut, Paul Forristal, Ryan Forsythe, Penelope Goddard, Jean-Jacques Grandville, Simon Hanes, Rhys Hughes, Alexei Kalinchuk, KKUURRTT, Rick Krieger, David Moscovich, Jason E. Rolfe, Paul Rosheim, Bob Rucker, Thaddeus Rutkowski, Doug Skinner, Terry Southern, Yuriy Tarnawsky, Tom Whalen, & Carla M. Wilson.

ORDER YOUR COPY ON AMAZON NOW