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Unmentionable: The Victorian Lady's Guide to Sex, Marriage, and Manners by [Oneill, Therese]
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Unmentionable: The Victorian Lady's Guide to Sex, Marriage, and Manners Kindle Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 215 customer reviews

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Length: 309 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Hysterically funny and unsettlingly fascinating. This book is full of awesome."―Jenny Lawson, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Let's Pretend This Never Happened and Furiously Happy

"If UNMENTIONABLE does not secure the Pulitzer Prize for Most Fascinating Book Ever, the whole gig is rigged. Hilarious, horrifying, shocking and revelatory, this book is for every girl who pictured herself running through a field of wildflowers in a silk dress and Little House on the Prairie boots, only to discover she has nits in her hair, her clothes have never been washed and she sleeps with her poop under her bed in a bowl. A miracle of a book and one of my favorite reads ever, UNMENTIONABLE will be my go-to gift this year. All hail Therese Oneill for uncovering all of that dirty, dirty laundry."―Laurie Notaro, #1 New York Times bestselling author of It Looked Different on the Model and Housebroken

"Oneill uncovers the filthy, untidy, licentious conditions of nineteenth-century women's lives that novelists of the period often glossed over...brilliantly conveyed with fascinating illustrations."Elle

"Flat-out hysterical (and occasionally alarming)...Read it and be very, very glad you're a woman of modern times."Good Housekeeping

"It's hard to imagine a woman - or a teenage girl - who won't love this book."―Caitlin Flanagan, Washington Post

"A fascinating look into the shocking pseudoscience of the 1800s, in which Oneill sheds new light on the origins of today's misogyny, double standards, and just plain mystery surrounding women that, maddeningly enough, persist."Booklist

"Therese Oneill lifts the veil on those romantic notions about olden times to unearth some pretty horrifying truths about hygiene, sex, menstruation, and beauty in the 19th century. . . . What results is a positively hysterical romp through 19th century womanhood."Bustle

"Rich with information that will amuse and sometimes horrify... the playful application of language makes the horrendous plight of Victorian women palatable to modern audiences. Oneill succeeds in making otherwise dry information (the proper order of eating utensils, the development of modern sanitation) sparkle."The Guardian

"It's clear in every page of Unmentionable that Oneill has done her research on what the Victorian lady was expected to tackle, from dinner-party etiquette to arsenic as skin care. . . . the vagaries of courtship, running a household, and taking a bath fall under a modern and distinctly snarky lens."NPR.org

"If you've ever felt like you should have been born in another time, Unmentionable will disabuse you of that sensibility, and it will do so charmingly. Focused on all the trappings of 19th-century womanhood-from wacky olde products ('perambulating umbrella cases,' scary-looking birth controls methods) to what one could expect on her wedding night-the book transmits a wealth of historical research in a cheerfully tongue-in-cheek tone and an impressive collection of archival photos."Vice/Broadly

"Although it's nonfiction, Oneill writes from the perspective of an all-knowing, slightly cheeky Victorian woman giving guidance to the contemporary woman. The result is a thoroughly researched but hilarious look into daily life of the Victorian woman."The Millions

"A down-and-dirty perusal of the realities of hygiene and womanhood in the Victorian era. The truth behind slimming corsets, virtuous nuptials, and strict morals is sometimes shocking, occasionally alarming, but always funny with Oneill's wry commentary."Library Journal, Editors Fall Pick

"A quick, hilarious romp through the gritty unmentionable details that literature fails to discuss--those of the most intimate nature. . . . Oneill's delight in her subject is endearing. She delivers even the most disturbing facts, like how drinking wells and sewage were placed close to each other, in entertaining ways. Yet Oneill's stories are not without depth. Throughout Unmentionable, she notes how far feminism and related movements have come from the constrictions of Victorian ideologies."Shelf Awareness

About the Author

Therese Oneill lives in Oregon and writes humor and rare history articles for many different popular outlets, including Mental Floss, The Week, The Atlantic, and Jezebel. She lives with her husband and children near Portland. She can be found online at www.writerthereseoneill.com where she runs a popular history and narrative blog.

Product details

  • File Size: 156403 KB
  • Print Length: 309 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company (October 25, 2016)
  • Publication Date: October 25, 2016
  • Sold by: Hachette Book Group
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01CO4AWWU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,939 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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