Review – Senseisha:Memoirs of the Caribbean Woman

I’m a great believer in the power of women telling their own stories, and for me the best part of Senseisha: Memoirs of the Caribbean Woman is that it is entirely non-fiction.

Yes, there is a woman who found herself at a group orgy when she thought she was going to have a thoroughly boring night.  Yes, there is a woman who started flirting with the man who answered her query about hotel accomodation whilst planning a work trip, and she hooked up with him on her arrival. And yes, there is a story about a 9 year old girl who describes her first orgasm with another girl in such vivid colour that you kinda feel a lil guilty for feeling turned on by the sexual acts of children. Yes these stories are non normative but then deep down so are many of us, and probably lots of you can identify with stories like this. Your first awareness of your own sexuality growing up. Having your period and feeling embarassed to tell your Mother. Your first boyfriend taking advantage of you, and what started as a consensual act becoming rape, and influencing your future relationships with men long into the future.

Senseisha is divided into the following sections:

First Time Experiences

Coming Out

Love and Intimacy

Overcoming Abuse

Embracing the Taboo

The title of the sections are fairly self explanatory. All sorts of first time experiences are recounted including those I referenced in the first paragraph. Coming out focuses on how the authors came to terms with their own sexuality. Whether it was through the feminist writings of people like June Jordan, Audre Lourde and Patricia Hill Collins as cited in ‘Where is the love?’ or in spite of the hatred experienced in ‘My Sexuality and My Church’ which includes this excerpt:

Soon enough the Pastor’s family knew every detail of the situation, and within a few weeks the entire church knew. I bravely returned to church Sunday after Sunday  to be greeted by whispers, avoidance and  sermons about homosexuals, abomination and hell. The people I once spoke to frowned upon me and walked away if I attempted to greet them; the hugs I once received from deaconesses turned to quick, dry waves from afar; the laughs after church with fellow youth leaders were exchanged for grunts and stares. The love of the church was gone and I eventually stopped going to church.

All you romantics will probably turn straight to the ‘Love and Intimacy Section’ and those who like a frisson of extra naughtiness will head straight to ‘Embracing the Taboo’ which includes a story about one of the topics we have been chatting about a lot on this platform recently. A story about a 33 year old woman and her out of this world sex with a 19 year old boy (man?) very appropriately entitled ‘The Younger Man’.

Not all the stories in this anthology will turn you on. Stories like ‘Diary of a Punching Bag’ are tough to read, and when I initially flipped through this collection in January this year I thought to myself that these should have been reserved for a separate book on violence against women but I’ve come to the conclusion that I was wrong. Senseisha is about women’s sexual memoirs and the sad reality is that women’s sexual experiences are not always as positive, passionate and as pleasure filled as Adventures would like it to be. This is an anthology I will dip into periodically and I can happily recommend you get your own copy here.


6 comments On Review – Senseisha:Memoirs of the Caribbean Woman

  • This looks awesome! just bought my copy.

    I also just discovered Nigerian romance author Kiru Taye- whaaa??! some really well-written, sizzling erotica set in Nigeria.

  • Ah! I feel naughty, though you all knew about Kiru?

  • Thanks for the excellent review! We are both humbled that these Caribbean stories can resonate with our sisters on the African continent. I know I enjoy reading their stories as well. Let me know if you have sny questions ????

  • Even me I know Kiru. The girl is GOOD. She writes historical romance as well as contemporary. She has already claimed the title of Queen of African Romance. I’ll have to settle for Okyame of African Romance until I reach her levels and dethrone her. LOL!

  • Aunty!! I soooo have missed thee!! :))

    My Malaka, you have to provide translation for Okyame…. By the way, I’ve been reading ALL your MOM posts, and can I just tell you, keep the FIRE burning!!! More VIM to you. NB:// the last post about the Chief of D somewhere was hilarious.

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