And I'd Do It Again Bookcover

And I’d Do It Again by Aimée Crocker, The Princess Galitzine

Today’s heiresses are boring: their idea of adventure is trying to sip a green juice while their lips are still numb from cosmetic surgery. (Oops—dribbled a bit on that Balmain dress!) Aimée Crocker, a San Francisco railroad heiress born in 1864, used her wealth to scandalize prudes and scald the bourgeois palate. Her 1934 memoir, And I’d Do It Again, describes her saturnalian adventures around the globe. Now it’s been reissued, and Libby Purves read it with relish: “When Aimée Crocker took up with a feudal Chinese warlord or a ‘Wild Man Of Borneo’ in the 1890s, it shocked everyone but her. When, back in New York, she invited the cream of society to a dinner and appeared, heavily decolletée and wrapped in a sixty-pound boa constrictor whose muscular form she found erotic, there were faints and shrieking … She falls for a ‘repulsively ugly’ hypnotist in Honolulu, dumps him after an incident at a leper colony, and reports not un-gleefully that two years later he put himself into a ‘hystero-cataleptic’ trance, was presumed dead and was autopsied while still alive. But by this point she’s only just getting going … to China, where she ransoms a girl from a cathouse and becomes the prisoner of a warlord, who makes her watch an execution by a thousand cuts and informs her, ‘I am the master of all that is beautiful in this house. I may keep those things, give them away or break them if it pleases me.’ ”

from the Paris Review

I Go Nowhere Without My Boa Constrictor, and Other News


Paperback: 400 pages
Publisher: Head of Zeus; UK ed. edition (April 1, 2018)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1784979864
ISBN-13: 978-1784979867