audio book, classics

The Perfumed Garden

The Perfumed Garden
Author: Sheikh Nefzaoui
Translator: Richard Burton
Read by: Jonathan Keeble
Publisher: Naxos Audio Books
Genre: Classics
Length: 5 CDs (Total time 6:34:43)
Price: $34.98

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The Perfumed Garden was written in the 15th century by Arab Sheikh Nefzaoui. Like India’s Kama Sutra, it portrays the joys of marital love through words and descriptions. If the reader follows the instructions provided, the author declares he will have an opportunity to experience these pleasures to the fullest.

Sheikh Nefzaoui was determined to provide an encyclopedic work in naming sexual positions, and both the male and female body parts. These lists are followed up by detailed descriptions which require some work to visualize properly. Drawings would have been nice, but were not provided with the CDs, and may not have been included in the original text.

In addition to the copious lists, short anecdotes and other explanations are included. Commentary on the deceits and treacheries of women is especially amusing, and home remedies for various ailments are also provided, although they should be used with extreme care. Married love is considered one of the greatest pleasures on earth, and both men and women are encouraged to enjoy each other to the fullest.

This sensitive subject is handled professionally and skilfully by reader Jonathan Keeble. Taking on the personality of Sheikh Nefzaoui, he encourages listeners to follow his instructions and maximize their pleasure. This quality production would be perfect for couples to enjoy on a quiet evening, letting nature take its course with its message.

Reviewer: Alice Berger