I know it will surprise no one familiar with the United States and its citizens that we are generally ignorant of what happens in other countries, even Canada, one of our closest neighbors that even has a shared language with us. This is why when I was offered a review copy of “Dominatrix on Trial: How a Canadian Dominatrix Fought the Law and Won” by Terri-Jean Bedford. I had no clue who Bedford was, and no idea about her role in legal history in Canada.
This is a riveting autobiography that let’s American readers learn a few things about our neighbors to north; Canadians, particularly the politicians, can be just as big of puritanical hypocrites as any United States citizen, and they’re justice system suffers from much the same horrible flaws as ours. Yes, Canada has some issues despite tighter gun laws and better healthcare coverage. Terri-Jean Bedford outlines her life from her beginnings in poverty, to successful dominatrix, to years of legal proceedings that ultimately changed prostitution laws in Canada.
And Bedford is a capable storyteller, she knows what the reader wants. Years of legal bureaucracy is recreated on the page to frustrating effect thanks to court transcriptions. All the while, interspersed, are stories about what it takes to be a dominatrix and first-hand accounts of her experiences with clients. All in all, it makes for a compelling page turner. Honestly, “Dominatrix on Trial” has all the makings for a docuseries, and the fact that one doesn’t exist based off the book is a genuine surprise. I will admit, due to the self-published nature of the original text in 2011, and the work of Riverdale Avenue Books for its release in 2022, “Dominatrix on Trial” suffers from a few confusing bits of formatting that could use cleaning up for future reprints, but it is not enough to take away from a great read.
If you’re looking for an eye-opening read, I cannot recommend “Dominatrix on Trial” by Terri-Jean Bedford enough.
You can learn more here.
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