Eleven Minutes (P.S.) by Coelho, Paulo

Here is a product description as displayed by amazon.com

Eleven Minutes is the story of Maria, a young girl from a Brazilian village, whose first innocent brushes with love leave her heartbroken. At a tender age, she becomes convinced that she will never find true love, instead believing that “love is a terrible thing that will make you suffer. . . .” A chance meeting in Rio takes her to Geneva, where she dreams of finding fame and fortune. Maria’s despairing view of love is put to the test when she meets a handsome young painter. In this odyssey of self-discovery, Maria has to choose between pursuing a path of darkness — sexual pleasure for its own sake — or risking everything to find her own “inner light” and the possibility of sacred sex, sex in the context of love.

Let’s be clear, yes this is a book about a women in the search of love, yes she does become a prostitute, and yes there is lots of mention of sex and her sexual affairs.

Recently there have been a lot buzz around women reading books that are about sex, (ex: 50 Shades of Grey) and I have many things to say about this but first I’d like to talk about the Eleven Minutes.

It was different, it was erotic, and so very insightful.  During her off hours the character spends time in the library learning about the human mind, their wants, desires, fears.  She studies psychology and learns to play three different roles for her clients.  (And no, not roles as in roleplay).  She helps them fill the void they are trying to escape from.  She mentions how many of the “high-end” clients simply want to talk.  Discuss the details of work or their life, share their world with, someone who will listen to them, someone to have discussions with.

A few quotes from the book:

I can choose either to be a victim of the world or an adventurer in search of treasure. It’s all a question of how I view my life.

All my life, I thought of love as some kind of voluntary enslavement. Well, that’s a lie: freedom only exists when love is present. The person who gives him or herself wholly, the person who feels freest, is the person who loves most wholeheartedly.      And the person who loves wholeheartedly feels free…

Love is not to be found in someone else, but in ourselves; we simply awaken it. But in order to do that, we need the other person. The universe only makes sense when we have someone to share our feelings with.

Possible Spoilers:
Maria grows into a woman believing there is something wrong with her as she can’t achieve sexual satisfaction when she is sexually engaged with a man.  She believes this is a sign that she is meant to be alone and not meant for love.  This idea plays heavily into her relationships and her actions as she becomes a woman and a prostitute.

In the book they mention the history of prostitution, and how there are two histories.  It is also brought into light how women’s sexual satisfaction wasn’t “accepted” until the 20th Century.  I learned this in a class I took in college so I wasn’t all that surprised when I read it.  To keep this short I’m just going to bullet a list of thoughts.

  • Men do not know how to please a woman, nor are they aware that there are two ways for women to achieve an orgasm.
  • Women don’t speak up and let their man/men know what they want
  • Sexual satisfaction for women is not widely accepted as it is still common place where female genital mutilation still exits.

Some questions for you:
1. Would you read a (or be okay with your gf) reading a book about sex?
2. Would you talk to your partner about what you want in bed?
3. Do you believe you’re fully satisfying your partner?



2 responses to “Eleven Minutes (P.S.) by Coelho, Paulo

  1. Pingback: 11 Minutes | There's No Such Thing as the Real World

  2. Pingback: 11 Minutes | Serenade My SoulSerenade My Soul

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