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The 21 Best Porn Star Autobiographies and Memoirs

Looking for some erotic, but enlightening, bedtime reading material?

Not known for their writing skills, the memoirs of most pornography stars have been written with the help of a ghost writer who help to set down in words exactly what it’s like to lead the life of an adult movie star. As well as being stuffed with plenty of inside information and behind-the-scenes revelations, the autobiography of a porn star can be as saucy as they are surprising.From compelling accounts of how these leading men and women found themselves at the forefront of the adult industry to straight up saucy revelations, these memoirs are bursting with the best inside look at the world of porn.

Reading like a ‘Who’s Who’ of porn, we’ve compiled a list of the best porn star autobiographies and memoirs from Asa Akira to Zak Smith.

Asa Akira

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs asa akira

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Asa Akira is one of the most famous porn stars of the last few decades and is still well watched across the major porn tube sites, appearing in over 300 adult movies. Winner of the 2013 AVN Performer of the Year, Asa Akira has actually written three books.

Her first was entitled Insatiable: Porn – A Love Story and is a brutally honest but often humorous look back (and sometimes ahead) at her career in the porn industry. The book was widely acclaimed by critics and well-received by her fans in what has been described by some as a:

“Relentlessly risqué. . . a lascivious, personalized journey through the pornography industry”

Her second book, Dirty Thirty marks Akira’s ‘coming of age’ as she turns thirty in an industry where the next hot young thing is always snapping at your heels. In this memoir, Akira once again demonstrates a surprising deftness of touch as she handles subjects as diverse as death and marriage alongside the obvious subjects of sex and love. Once again, the book was widely received with positive reviews such as:

Personally revealing as well as universal, Dirty Thirty marks the coming of age of a new literary star.”

And finally, Akira has followed up the success of her first two memoirs with a third title, Asarotica. An exploration of what turns porn stars on, this book is a collection of 22 sexy stories and erotic essays written by stars of the blue movie screen. Edited by Akira and featuring a short story she wrote herself, it is an intriguing selection of vignettes and a real eye-opener on the libidinous and, sometimes, fetishist appetites of your favorite porn stars. Not so much a memoir this last book but definitely well worth adding to your collection of Akira titles.

All three books are interesting and insightful reads which come highly recommended and, at very least, offer fans the chance to go deep inside (the mind) of Asa Akira.

Ashley Blue

Born Oriana Small, Ashley Blue  is another mega star of the adult movie industry and has appeared in more than 300 porno films including the infamous Girlvert series. She was voted the AVN Performer of the Year in 2004 and has also won numerous other awards for her work.

Blue’s autobiography takes the title of her most iconic porn movie and is called Girlvert: A Porno Memoir. Released in 2011, it is an, at times, brutally honest account of the decade of her life that she spent working in the industry. Illuminating and charged with authenticity, the book is actually a rather beautiful read. It was received well by critics and she was even given the highest accolade of being compared to a literary genius:

“If Hemingway had been a porn star, this is how he would have written.”

Though we might not go so far as to say the work is a masterpiece of modern memoirs, it is an excellent piece of work which not only offers up the darker side of life as a porn star for scrutiny but also the highs. Of course, there is plenty of detail in her accounts of the sex which makes for titivating reading.

Christy Canyon

Lights, Camera, Sex is the autobiographical account of the 1980s porn icon, Christy Canyon (real name Melissa Kaye Bardizbanian). An inductee into the AVN Hall of Fame, Canyon has performed in over 100 adult movies under several pseudonyms including Tara White, Linda Daniel, Sara wine and DeeDee.

She famously retired from the industry on three separate occasions but each time returned to the porn movie business within a few years. Even her last retirement in 1997 has not entirely separated her from the sector as she continues to run her own porn website and is a host on the Vivid Radio network.

Published in 2003, her autobiography is not the slickest memoir you will ever come across and is written in an amateurish way in places. However, it is perhaps this authenticity which makes the book intensely readable as it adds an extra element of intimacy that feels as though she is sharing her thoughts with a small audience.

Covering everything from her early life growing up in the San Fernando Valley, Canyon spills the beans on all her misadventures with fellow porn stars including Traci Lords, Ginger Lynn, Ron Jeremy and Peter North. As you would expect, there are some bad encounters here along with the highs of a career on top but she handles the subject well and delivers a powerful account of life outside of the glare of the studio lights.

It’s a juicy memoir that leaves out none of the details you would wish for when looking back at the career of one of porn’s biggest stars.

Georgina Spelvin

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs georgina spelvin the devil made me do it

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For all but the dedicated porn fan, the name Georgina Spelvin may not mean that much but this erotic icon of the 1970s was the star of a classic porno movie, The Devil in Miss Jones. Released in 1973, this ‘porno chic’ movie was shot by the same director as Deep Throat and is widely regarded as one of the most iconic movies of the Golden Age of Porn.

Spelvin first shot some softcore lesbian scenes in the late 1950s and 1960s but was immediately catapulted to fame as the lead in The Devil in Miss Jones. She followed up with a couple of low-budget sexploitation films and continued making porno movies until 1982 when she retired.

Recording over 100 titles, Spelvin’s memoir takes us back to a very different era of adult movie and starts way before the heyday of her career. At times bawdy and at others poignant, this autobiography is more laugh out loud funny than teary and has been hailed as:

“… not a victim’s whine, but a romping good read, filled with the colorful details of a road less traveled.”

A tale of one woman’s journey from young hippie to porn star and then to housewife, The Devil Made Me Do It is an absorbing and fascinating read that is well worth picking up.

Hyapatia Lee

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs hyapatia lee secret lives

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Born Victoria Lynch, Hyapatia Lee was the stage name chosen by this 1980s porn star due to her mixed Cherokee/Irish heritage. The only adult performer (at the time) who could lay claim to Native American descent, Lynch/Lee gained a lot of prominence at the tail end of the Golden Age of Porn.

She was inducted into the AVN Hall of Fame in 1993 and was given a lifetime achievement award from the Free Speech Coalition in 1995

A self-published memoir released in 2000,  The Secret Lives of Hyapatia Lee is not brilliantly written and could have done with an editor or ghost writer to help Lynch realize a more ‘finished’ book. It is also quite a dark exploration of how someone with a difficult background ‘fell into porn’. This is an autobiography that firmly falls into the ‘victim’ category but, nevertheless, makes for some interesting reading….particularly if you were/are a fan.

Jenna Jameson

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs jenna jameson how to make love like a porn star

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There are few bigger names in the porn industry than Jenna Jameson. The modern day icon of the adult entertainment industry has made as much of a name for herself as a businesswoman as she has the Queen of Porn. With an estimated net worth in excess of $30 million, Jameson’s memoirs are proof of yet another string to her bow. The book, published in 2004, spent six weeks at the top of the New York Times bestseller list and no doubt continues to earn her considerable royalties.

And deservedly so. How to Make Love Like a Porn Star: A Cautionary Tale is an unforgettable account of one woman’s rise to the top in this multi-billion-dollar industry. With the help of a writer, it is an insightful and ballsy account of the inner workings of the adult movie business coupled with some revealing inside gossip. It is also, as the title suggests, a cautionary tale against the trappings of the glitz and glamour by addressing those familiar issues of exploitation, rivalry and double standards.

In her continued crossover to the mainstream, the book was reviewed by plenty of critics who were (mainly) delighted with her efforts and was dubbed ‘a gold mine’ for aspiring performers.

“Captivating…a real person comes through in its page…Lively, hellacious, entertaining, sharp, feisty, and touching.”

A titivating, sometimes gripping but always thrilling autobiography, How to Make Love Like a Porn Star is a great read and certainly a book that any true fan should have their paws on. If not for the words but certainly for the never-before-seen and exclusive photos from Jameson’s private collection.

Jerry Butler

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs jerry butler raw talent

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A prolific star of the porn industry and appearing in more than 500 titles over his twelve-year career, Jerry Butler was born Paul Siederman in 1959 to a Jewish father and a mother with Cherokee heritage. He is considered one of the porn legends of the 1980s and is fondly remembered by his audience as being a natural on set. Compared to many male leads of the time, Butler brought an element of humor to his work as well as being an intense and uninhibited performer.

His memoir, Raw Talent: The Adult Film Industry As Seen by Its Most Famous Male Star, is an excellent read and demonstrates the addiction that adult movie stars have to the industry despite its flaws and failings. The book is actually written by two writers to whom Butler told his story but, nevertheless, he is a great raconteur and shows a remarkable emotional intelligence giving this no-holds barred expose.

His honesty was far from rewarded and, on the book’s release in 1991, earned him quite a few detractors from within the industry.

John C. Holmes

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs john holmes porn king

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Few names in the porn industry are as well-known in the mainstream as that of John C. Holmes. A giant among men, in every sense of the word, Holmes is to the adult movie business what Elvis was to Rock n Roll.

The undisputed King of Porn appeared in a staggering 550+  porn films (some say more than 2,200) and was known as ‘Mr Big’ by his legions of fans; an apt moniker for the owner of an exceptionally large penis.

Despite his infamy as a blue move screen legend, Holmes was actually an intensely private and down-to-earth man who was more comfortable with his other nickname, ‘Mr Nice Guy’.

It is precisely because of his private nature that makes Porn King a truly unique and intimate memoir, particularly as it was co-written with the help of Holmes’s wife, Linda (aka Misty Dawn). There is very little about his early life but the accounts really start when he broke into the porn industry and tell the story of the adult movie business in its heyday from a male perspective. No corner is left unlit and Holmes covers everything between these pages from his involvement in the Wonderland Murders (he was acquitted due to insufficient evidence) to his side job as a male prostitute servicing the rich and famous.

There is very little glamour in the account of his own life yet there is a fondness here in his retelling of his story which is charming yet dated; Holmes hails from a very different era and it shows.

It’s an easy read that is refreshing and entertaining whilst (appearing) to be brutally honest. A rare portrait of an icon from the Golden Age of Porn, you wont be disappointed if this is the only porn star autobiography you ever read.

Linda Lovelace

According to some critics, Linda Lovelace’s autobiography Ordeal is the most talked about porn memoir of all time. It is actually her third such book but her previous two attempts (Inside Linda Lovelace and Out of Bondage) are not (according to Lovelace) the whole story…

In Ordeal she makes some startling revelations about the truth behind her starring role in the world’s most famous porn film, Deep Throat. In this book, she reveals that her partner, Chuck Traynor, and director of this 8mm skin flick not only coerced her into performing but did so under extreme threats of violence. As well as death threats, systematic abuse and holding Lovelace at gun-point, Lovelace claims that he also forced her into prostitution.

Famously a born-again Christian, the book has added fuel to the fires of the morality debate around pornography; Lovelace herself was a spokesperson for the anti-pornography movement up until her death in 2002.

Ordeal  is an horrific account of one woman’s attempt to protect herself and her family from violence and abuse that is, unfortunately, tied up with one of the most iconic adult movies ever released. It is an eye-opener to read and casts a very different light on to Deep Throat than the proponents of this ‘feminist’ piece of hardcore porn at the time would have you believe.

For many readers, this shocking account will ‘spoil’ the magic that this seminal piece of work embodies. However, it is an important memoir that not only shines a light on the dark underworld of where porn has come from but, importantly, helps illuminate the path of how this should never happen again.

Meghan Chavalier

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs meghan chevalier confessions of a transsexual porn star

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Not necessarily the most well-known porn star you will find on our list, however Meghan Chavalier is certainly one of the most intriguing. A male to female transsexual, Chavalier rose to fame as the world’s most successful ‘shemale’ adult film stars in the business and is still widely watched on porn tube sites.

Right from the off, we will warn you that her memoir, Confessions Of A Transsexual Porn Star is not a cheery read. Far from it. In fact, it has plenty of the typical ingredients that many anti-porn campaigners would get excited over (if they were allowed to) including an alcoholic, abusive father, bipolar disorder, depression, prostitution and drug abuse. Yes, of course these issues are not to be belittled but there are plenty of porn memoirs which cite them. What’s different in this particular autobiography (apart from the obvious) is that Chavalier has overcome them in spite of her own issues with gender identity and doesn’t portray herself as a victim.

What comes across in this book is a strength and determination that sees her succeed as an alternative porn icon who possesses an enormous amount of dignity.

True, the writing here is not the literary genius of a professional wordsmith but we can forgive the odd grammatical error and poor piece of prose simply because we enjoyed the story telling. At times quite hard to read, the underlying sentiment of this book is about picking yourself up when you are down and focusing on positive strength rather than succumbing to negativity. A truly illuminating read that comes with plenty of rewards along the way.

Monica Mayhem

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs monica mayhem absolute mayhem

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If you want to know exactly how a girl from Brisbane became a global porn sensation then Absolute Mayhem is precisely the memoir for you. To be honest, there aren’t that many alternatives but, fortunately, Monica Mayhem’s foray into the world of celebrity autobiography is actually a pretty good read…if you set aside any hopes of intelligent insight or perceptive narrative.

What you get with this ‘tell-all’ memoir is a candid and funny take on just how a ‘respectable’ financier and high-school misfit managed to find herself an award-winning adult movie star.

Mayhem can count more than 400 porn films to her name as well as mainstream appearances in movies such as Sex in the City and her memoir reads like a solid flipping the bird to her detractors. Far from being a tale of how the porn industry has ‘ruined’ her life, this is a celebration of what the business has given to Mayhem.

Absolute Mayhem is a refreshing and revealing account of a, previously, very private person who decided in 2009 to bare all and tell the world how proud she was to be a porn star.

Penny Flame

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs penny flame I am jennie

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Star of more than 200 adult movies over a career which spanned from 2002 to 2009, Penny Flam (aka Jennie Ketcham) is another porn star who has achieved mainstream crossover fame. Famously appearing on The Oprah Winfrey Show (and many more besides) to discuss sex addition, Flame started blogging about her experiences in the porn industry in 2009 (after she retired).

The blog was turned into a memoir and published in 2012 as I Am Jennie and documents her ‘descent’ into the world of pornography accompanied by issues with drug addiction. In the book, she reveals her story which includes ingredients that will be familiar to many; difficult family life, early promiscuity, an inability to find emotional intimacy and substance abuse. For Flame, porn was a catalyst of self-destructive behavior and much of this well written memoir addresses her recovery from this world and how she forged a new path in life after retiring from the industry. Famously renouncing and forfeiting all of the profits she made from the adult movie business, I Am Jennie is a journey beyond porn.

Ron Jeremy

Could there be a better title for Ron Jeremy’s autobiography than The Hardest (Working) Man in Showbiz: The Life and Times of a Porn Star?

Truly one of the most prolific and entertaining porn stars ever, Jeremy has starred in almost 2000 adult movies (directing more than 280) and has had sex with every leading lady you care to mention. Famously, the ‘everyman’ of porn, it is precisely that he is ‘ordinary’ in the looks department (yet blessed with a large cock) that has made him so popular; this and the fact he is a bit of a ‘character’.

In his autobiography, you can expect his larger than life personality to burst out of the pages and take you on a whirlwind journey of sensational stories told with great aplomb and plenty of humor. It turns out that, despite not getting many speaking roles in his many films, he is quite the raconteur! There’s plenty of namedropping here and the anecdotes come thick and fast (much like his on-screen work!).

“…if you want to know where all the bodies are buried, he’s the guy that can not only show you the grave, but can tell you the back story on the tombstone.”

Published by Harper Collins in 2007, Jeremy’s autobiography may not be the most comprehensive account of his life. If anyone who is looking for rare insights about how a middle-class Jewish boy from Queens ended up in the Guinness Book of World Records for Most Appearances in Adult Films may be disappointed but that does not detract from this hugely entertaining read. If you enjoy reading this book then you should definitely catch the documentary of his life, Porn Star: The Legend of Ron Jeremy.

Sasha Cream

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs sasha cream the naked truth

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Subtitled ‘Exposing the Industry’, The Naked Truth by Sasha Cream promises ‘revealing secrets’ and crazy ‘escapades’ as she reveals all about her time spent as both a call girl and porn star.

As I sift through a long list, I’ll spare no details when it comes to my time spent pleasing these men in ways their wives and girlfriends weren’t—all for the mighty dollar”

Cream may not be the most well-known adult performer on our list nor is her memoir the best written. However, The Naked Truth offers anyone looking for celebrity gossip a few juicy titbits. Expect some bean spilling about her relationships with the likes of Bow Wow, Soulja Boy, Cee Lo Green and Momma Dee.

Don’t expect a literary masterpiece but do appreciate it for its naivety and for being a reflection of one woman’s experiences in the adult entertainment industry.

Sasha Grey

Though only actively working as an adult performer for four years (2007-2010), Sasha Grey is a well-known face in the industry and shot to fame with her debut performance; an orgy performed with Rocco Siffredi. The following year she became the youngest winner of the coveted AVN Female Performer of the Year and went on to collect another 14 awards in her short career.

Neü Sex is a photo memoir that vividly documents her time on set and being around the porn industry in general. Most of the images were taken by Grey herself but some are taken by her fiancé, Ian. Accompanied by thoughts and musings, the result is a very intimate window but is far from ‘revealing’ in the sense of an autobiography.

Don’t expect any revealing insights and certainly don’t expect any graphic depictions of sex; instead, this is merely self-portraiture with elements of poetry. One for Grey fans only and not those seeking juicy, behind-the-scenes gossip.

Seka

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs seka inside seka

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Often referred to as the Marilyn Monroe (or, Platinum Princess) of Porn, Seka is one of the biggest names of the adult film industry. As leading producer and agent, Bill Margold, points out:

The Mount Rushmore of Adult Entertainment has four heads: John Holmes, Marilyn Chambers, Jenna Jameson, and Seka. That’s it; there ain’t no more.

Appearing in more than 200 titles, many of which bore her name, Seka’s career started in the late 1970s and she remained top of her game until she retired in 1993. During this time, she worked with most of the screen legends whose names we are all familiar with from this era. However, she was also a regular on the Hollywood circuits and her memoirs include celebrity gossip from her time spent with movie stars, artists and rock stars.

Published in 2013, Inside Seka is a refreshing porn star autobiography that has none of the ‘misery memoir’ or ‘victim mentality’ for which much of this genre is known. Instead, Seka delivers a powerfully positive account of her life despite the usual ups and downs one can attribute to this kind of journey to stardom. There are no apologetic excuses here and you won’t find any accusations being leveled at the industry. What you get is the story of an enigmatic and charming woman who was (and is) in control of her own destiny.

The book was co-written with the help of a ghost-writer, Kerry Zukus, and is a remarkably easy read which zips along at a good pace.

Steven St. Croix

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs steven st croix porn star

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Star of more than 1400 adult movies, Steven St. Croix has been in the adult industry for over twenty years so has plenty of experience and insights to share.

Though not quite an autobiography, Porn Star—Everything You Want To Know And Are Embarrassed To Ask, is, nevertheless, a very entertaining and informative read. In it, St. Croix answers some frequently asked questions of the porn business and dispels many myths along the way. From his candid accounts of what a ‘fluffer’ actually does on set to the contentious legislation regarding mandatory condom use in the industry, this is a pretty educational read.

In it, he does chart some of his journey from how he got his first break to his own opinions on the world of adult entertainment. The book was released in 2013 as an eBook only and it is not clear how much of an edit this memoir actually received. Though an informative account, you can’t help but feel that the whole book could have delivered more with a professional publisher. Still, it’s not without its value as a quick and sometimes amusing reflection on some aspects of the industry omitted by many others (botched plastic surgery and the Mafia plus the economics of making porn).

Stormy Daniels

Whilst there are many people who would never pick up an autobiography of a porn star, Full Disclosure is one of the most widely read memoirs of an adult performer…ever. Though she had made a reasonably well-known name for herself prior to that date in March 2018 when she filed a lawsuit against the president of the USA, it is her relationship with Donald Trump that will probably always define her. Certainly, according to Pornhub’s review of 2018, Stormy Daniels was the search term that defined the year.

The book is a complete account of the notorious nondisclosure agreement and her subsequent battle to take on the Leader of the Free World. She addresses the subject of intimidation and being thrust into the limelight as well as being publicly reviled by many. It is a frank, often funny, but compelling story of one woman’s journey into the porn industry lead to crossing swords with, perhaps, the most powerful establishment in the world.

“Reading Daniels’ story in her own words, you find yourself charmed by her wit and her stark self-awareness, all of which draws you further into the book.”

Don’t get us wrong, this book has its flaws and there are many who will read Daniels’ memoir with a raised eyebrow. Politics aside, and whichever side of the fence you sit on, this book is explosive, full of mischief and written with an incredibly defiant and unapologetic voice.

Tera Patrick

Tera Patrick is another huge name of the porn industry who has been inducted into both the AVN and XRCO Halls of Fame. Patrick is one of America’s favorite porn starlets of the Millennium and still regularly receives millions of views on the tube sites. Once married to the porn star Evan Seinfeld and still owner of her own production company (TeraVision), she is (like fellow performer Jenna Jameson) a successful businesswoman.

Published in 2010 and written with the help of the journalist Carrie Borzillo, Sinner Takes All is a no-holds barred, and very personal, account of Patrick’s life. Though revealing, there are familiar ingredients here including plenty of emotional obstacles, poor relationship choices, difficult family ties and a deep depression resulting in a suicide attempt.

Certainly dark in places, Patrick described writing the book as a “cathartic” experience and there is a sense of a journey shared when you read this book. In fact, the process allowed Patrick to mend the fractured relationship with her mother and address her separation from Seinfeld.

Well received by her audience, Sinner Takes All has plenty of positive reviews from critics.

“The fast-reading memoir whips from knowing to naive and back as it tracks its plucky protagonist from ugly-duckling school days to international adult superstardom.”

However, the book is probably best summed up by one celebrity reviewer, Dave Navarro when he described Patrick’s autobiography as “… an inspirational read with a clear message: There are no limits when one is determined, motivated, and driven.”

Traci Lords

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs traci lords underneath it all

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An infamous name in the porn industry, Traci Lords only played a part in the business for a couple of years from 1984 to 1986. However, it was the fact that Lords famously faked her ID to appear in adult movies when she was just 15 that has earned her a place in the unofficial Hall of Fame.

Her autobiography, titled Underneath It All, follows her story as she runs away from home at the age of 14 to pursue her dream of a modelling career. What follows, as we all know, is an addiction to cocaine and sex which led to her short career in blue movies before an explosive revelation about her true age.

“Frank, opinionated, intelligent, drenched in emotion….Will have readers cheering Lords on as they speed through its gritty, big-souled pages”

Much of the memoir covers the latter years of her career in which she became a cult icon as well as appearing in plenty of mainstream movies and TV shows.

The book received very positive reviews from critics and, for a time, topped the New York Times bestsellers list when it was published in 2003.

Overall, it is a confident and pragmatic account of a woman who, thirty years on, is still capitalizing on the name she made for herself as a teenager in the porn industry.

Zak Smith

Best porn star autobiographies and memoirs zak smith we did porn

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Known more as an artist than a porn star, Zak Smith was at the periphery of the industry for some time, using porn performers as subjects for his drawings. At some point, however, he made the transition from one to the other and his colorful memoir, We Did Porn is the result.

A graphic book in both senses of the word, the tome contains plenty of drawings as well as keenly observed insights of the politics, people and culture of porn.

“An intelligent, funny, and self-aware reminder that intelligent, funny, and self-aware people do in fact choose to work in the porn industry.”

The book is presented in a series of vignettes which are broadly chronological in order and offer, for the readers scrutinizing gaze, a fascinating dissection of the alternative adult movie business.

Smith’s style may not be to everyone’s tastes and there is definitely something a little kinky about We Did Porn but what is undeniable is its incomparability. Funny yet beautiful, strange whilst familiar, this memoir is an arresting and articulate account of a singular kind of porn star.

Featured images via Amazon (see individual entries above).

Staff Writer

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