First Hand: An Erotic Guide to Fisting front cover

Front cover for First Hand: An Erotic Guide to Fisting

By Tim Brough
Published in 2005 by the Nazca Plains Corporation

First Hand begins with Jack Fritscher’s fantastic introduction which is a history that discusses how fisting entered the “homo-masculine” mainstream in the 70s and early 80s.  Fritscher mentions numerous books and magazines some of which I had never heard of, but now hope to add to my collection someday.

Tim Brough begins First Hand with a brief introduction to the anatomy of the anus.  Following the anatomy lesson is an interview with a physician and his partner as they discuss fisting. While the discussion touches on a few medical aspects of fisting play, the conversation is mostly high praise for the virtue of fisting.

The third section is the most straightforward as it is a how-to on anal fisting.  Beginning with the things one needs to have in their toybag for a fisting scene, the section talks about the fisting from the perspective of the top and bottom (or as the book describes it “pitching” and “catching”).

Following the how-to section are interviews with fisting fans and short blurbs where respondents describe their favorite scene and/or the appeal of fisting.  Finishing out the book is a 45 page piece of fiction that I frankly did not bother to read.

The how-to section mentioned above consisted of only nine pages making First Hand the textbook example of BDSM writers’ tendency to pad their works, turning pamphlet length discussions into book length tomes.  Unfortunately, this practice not only drives me nuts, the extra padding is a disservice to readers who want to learn more about a particular topic.

I have a suggestion for addressing this problem that I hope some enterprising BDSM publisher will steal and put into practice.  Rather than having one author write a book devoted to a topic that can be covered in the space of a few pages, create an anthology where different writers can cover various topics using only the length necessary to discuss the topic.  Not only would such a work solve the padding problem, the resulting book would become far more useful and indispensable.   Alas, based on what I have seen of the BDSM publishing industry the only way such a book will ever see the light of day is if I do it myself.

As I try to review this book, I find myself stumped.  On the one hand (pun intended), the book, especially Fritscher’s introduction, was fun to read, save for the fiction.  On the other hand (pun intended), for a book subtitled “an erotic guide to fisting” it was not particularly informative and seemed lacking as a guide.  Taken as a whole, while I enjoyed the enthusiasm evident in First Hand, there is not much else to recommend about it other than Fritscher’s introduction.