During this review I won't be going into any kind of graphic detail, nor will I be using horrible language. That said, this is the Marquis de Sade and I'll cover topics that some people may find offensive (the clue is in the title). With that in mind, feel free to spend your time on another post in the meantime!
Why would anyone want to read such a book? In my case, purely out of morbid curiosity. I've read Incest before, and actually quite enjoyed the telling of the story. So next up, I thought I'd give 120 Days of Sodom a shot. I'm not going to lie; I did enjoy reading this, but it wasn't in the same way that I enjoyed the almost fairy tale quality story of Incest. 120 Days, funnily enough, is perverted to a ridiculous point. It begins with a group of men who are seeking the ultimate thrills, hidden away from a society with any kind of moral standards. The book details how the men spend their day; an absurd description of libertinage including chocolates for breakfast and a choice of naked bodies of varying sexes and ages. Next come 150 passions as described by procured narrators - 600 passions detailed in all.
No fetish is left undescribed, no profanity is left unsaid and the events described will turn the stomachs of even the most hardened readers. Mostly, the horrific ends up seeming so ridiculous that it becomes absurd. Absurd in the most crazy of ways, and I struggled to imagine any human being sitting down and scribing such things. Not sure if the dear Marquis would approve of some of my reactions: a few of the obscenities listed made me giggle (or at least snort at the silliness) but there are images he has conjured in my mind that I very unfortunately won't be able to erase any time soon. It was an experience, to say the least. Notorious with very good reason, the man certainly accomplished what he set out to do.