In January I had a poll in the sidebar asking readers like you what books you'd like to see me review for Submissive Guide. The overwhelming response was that you wanted me to review The Submissive Activity Book: Building Blocks To Better Service by Shannon Reilly. I received the 184-page book without expectations of what I would find within its pages. No one has yet reviewed it on Amazon.
Flipping quickly through its pages it is first and foremost a workbook. There are pages and pages of forms for you to fill out to improve and learn the skills she puts forth in the book. According to Shannon the book was written for submissives not currently engaged in a D/s relationship that are looking to establish a structure in their lives that a Dominant normally would do. It is built to help the submissive learn and improve skills that a potential Dominant might desire.
The book is broken up into sections with activities towards different goals. From establishing a personal protocol with rewards and punishments, goal-setting, schedule making, and planning, learning new skills and furthering education as well as budgeting and learning personal finance. The book's second half has helpers for the submissive in understanding their wants and needs, how to negotiate and establish limits.
Before each activity form, there is a summary of what the activity is supposed to do for you and how it might help you grow. They are well thought out, but leave a lot to self-exploration. The number of copies of each workbook activity is sometimes excessive in my opinion and the author encourages the purchase of her companion book to get more blank copies of the forms. In today's technology age, I would have rather had one copy of each activity page; I can always make copies if necessary. I don't think the companion book is really needed at all.
My favorite activity section is the personal protocol. Shannon describes this section as a way to feel accountable for your actions even if you aren't in a relationship. She walks you through behaviors you would want to encourage and discourage as well as a punishment and reward system that you manage yourself to keep your new behaviors in check. For those submissives with a real desire to control and change their lives, this is a valuable section.
I dislike the wasted pages that are used for a calendar. While I can understand that the section is about planning and scheduling, I would rather encourage the submissive to get a schedule book that is small enough to carry around with them in their handbag or shoulder bag. This way the activity wouldn't involve either carrying the book everywhere or tearing out the pages. Again this would be a good place to encourage them to make copies of the pages they desire to use instead of giving them an entire year's worth of calendar pages.
Honestly, though, this book is very much in keeping with the purpose of this website and I'd recommend it for those of you who want to experience structure and start working towards your perfect self without a Dominant. You will then be able to enter into a relationship with more preparedness and your personal value may be higher.
- luna's Rating: 8/10
- Paperback: 184 pages
- Publisher: CreateSpace (February 22, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1440470499
- ISBN-13: 978-1440470493
- Product Dimensions: 9.9 x 8 x 0.6 inches