Brothel: Mustang Ranch and Its Women

by Alexa Albert | Nonfiction |
ISBN: 0449006581 Global Overview for this book
Registered by KateKintail of Burke, Virginia USA on 6/14/2009
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8 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by KateKintail from Burke, Virginia USA on Sunday, June 14, 2009
Bought this at a library sale or a thrift store used book sale.

I read another copy of this book on a bookring. Here are my thoughts:

Though I found some of the history & politics less interesting than the parts talking about the culture and people of the brothel, this was still a fast read that I couldn't put down. Frequently I told myself "just two more pages" and then I'd find myself still reading, a chapter later.

It was really fascinating to read this from the perspective of someone who's lived there. I've seen bits of HBO shows/specials where they filmed at various/certain other legal brothels in Nevada but this was much more intimate and revealing to me since it felt like a much more real (and less showy) account. The fact that Alexa introduces us to the brothel as she moves in to begin her research is a great use of the literary technique since we get to learn along with her. It's a great point of view that works well throughout. She gains our respect and trust almost immediately and then presents the world with a sympathetic but ultimately unbiased eye.

I loved reading about the people who are part of the industry and the different parts that all come together to make it run (smoothly, for the most part). I never think of cooks or laundresses; I never think about the fact that it's open for service every second of every day. And what was really eye-opening were the dynamics- the floor maids, the rivalries between women, the mutual understanding and support within the community/family. I love that she chose to integrate so many facts (like results from her study) into the book so it's informative as well as descriptive. I love the variety of topics covered- everything from how a brothel lawyer's family feels about the issue of legalized prostitution to the cyberworld's relationship to the brothel. And I love that in the end I really cared about all of these women and worried about them.

An absolutely fascinating account and one I'm very glad to have gotten the chance to read! Thank you! I'm glad I broke my "don't sign up for any bookrays/rings for books that aren't already on your wish list" rule and gave this a chance.

Journal Entry 2 by KateKintail from Burke, Virginia USA on Sunday, June 14, 2009
Lent this to my mother. She really liked it and thought it was eye-opening.

Journal Entry 3 by KateKintail at Bethesda, Maryland USA on Sunday, June 14, 2009

Released 11 yrs ago (6/14/2009 UTC) at Bethesda, Maryland USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Taking this to a BC in DC meetup at La Madeline. I hope it finds a good home!

Journal Entry 4 by wingmelydiawing from Rockville, Maryland USA on Sunday, June 14, 2009
Picked this up at today's BC in DC meetup in Bethesda, MD. This looks fascinating. Thanks!

Journal Entry 5 by wingmelydiawing at -- Geocaches, Virginia USA on Monday, June 21, 2010
Though she originally visited the famous Mustang Ranch in Nevada to perform a study about condom use in legal brothels, Albert discovers a fascination with the life of a prostitute, and is in fact invited back to live at the Mustang several times over it last few years in operation. I admit I hadn't given legal prostitution too much thought; after all, what consenting adults do behind closed doors is none of my business. This, however, provided an engrossing look into one of America's last remaining taboos. Albert covers all aspects of the business - from legislation and lobbying, to pimps and boyfriends, to traveling salesmen who supply the prostitutes with clothing and makeup, to internet fans, forums, and conventions - and all with both sympathy and blunt honesty, regardless of her personal feelings. This is certainly a book to make one think.

Journal Entry 6 by crrcookie at Washington, District of Columbia USA on Saturday, July 03, 2010
While at the meetup in Baltimore I was given this book. I am going to release it in the Nevada area when my family goes there on a Grand Canyon tour.

Journal Entry 7 by crrcookie at Washington, District of Columbia USA on Monday, August 16, 2010
Well, how could I resist this book sitting on my shelf? I just had to pick it up and see if it was worth reading. Dang it all if I wasn't immediately sucked into it and I really enjoyed reading it. I found it to be an engaging book as the reader is immediately put into the source of the curiosity and given some little tidbits that make us wonder just where this book is going. The author uses the middle of the book to give some of the dryer facts and by that point in the reading you are interested enough that they are not burdensome to read. I chuckled a bit at the outdated internet chapter but it is what it is for the time that the book was written. I must say that I was sad to see the Mustang closed in the end. (I didn't see if coming because I don't keep up with Nevada brothel news.) I am glad that I read this book and have some insight into something that I didn't know that I knew nothing about.

I still plan to leave this book in or near Nevada in September!

Journal Entry 8 by crrcookie at Washington, District of Columbia USA on Monday, August 16, 2010
This book was read for the 2010 Pages Read Challenge from the release challenge forum.

My goal is 40,000 pages and this book has a total of 254 pages that I am counting for this challenge. I have a total of 94 books read this year with 19,634 pages read for the year and that is 49.085% of my 2010 goal.

Journal Entry 9 by crrcookie at Washington, District of Columbia USA on Monday, August 16, 2010
This book was released for the 2010 Keep Them Moving Challenge from the release challenge forum.

This is release #23 for this challenge.

This book is from my personal stash of books to release. I'll be leaving the D.C. area shortly after the 2011 BookCrossing Convention and anything that I don't have to move is all the better. I am putting this book on the book buffet and hoping it finds a good home.

Where will this book end up and what kind of journey will it have along the way?


Journal Entry 11 by mdm139 at Alexandria, Virginia USA on Sunday, April 17, 2011
my husband picked this up at the book buffet cause his job is in medicine and it is about the study of disease or so he says...

Journal Entry 12 by wingmelydiawing at -- Geocaches, Virginia USA on Saturday, May 26, 2012
Beloved BCinDC members mdm139 and Rock-Solid were cleaning off their shelves in preparation for a cross-country move. I miss them already; I hope to continue this book's journey soon.

Journal Entry 13 by wingmelydiawing at -- Geocaches, Virginia USA on Saturday, June 16, 2012
Taking this to tomorrow's BCinDC meetup at the new OBCZ at Chick-Fil-A in Leesburg, VA. If there are no takers and it doesn't end up on the OBCZ shelf, I'll try to release it at Artomatic in Crystal City.

Journal Entry 14 by wingResQgeekwing at Alexandria, Virginia USA on Sunday, June 17, 2012
This was highly recommended, so in spite of my complete lack of need for more books to read, I found myself bringing it home with me!

Journal Entry 15 by wingResQgeekwing at Alexandria, Virginia USA on Tuesday, April 02, 2013
Nevada is the only state where prostitution is legal. Brothels are licensed and regulated, and brothel prostitutes must be tested regularly for STDs, including HIV, and condom use is required by law. When author Alexa Albert first considered researching the condom use by these prostitutes and their customers, she was stunned to learn that (at that time) NO prostitute had tested positive for HIV since the mandatory testing was implemented in 1986. This amazing statistic was so incredible that it drew her to this social outsider industry in an effort to understand, initially, how this remarkable medical feat was possible, and later, to understand the nature of the business itself.

The results of her immersion in this subculture is this remarkable book that explores what it means to be a legally sanctioned prostitute. We learn about the social and psychic costs of this work, as well as the benefits of working in the world’s oldest profession with the legal protections of a legitimate business. This portrayal of the women who choose to engage in this profession is both honest and compassionate, and Albert has succeeded in putting a human face on an industry that is normally not discussed and is often dismissed through the use of stereotypes.

It is clear that the author has conflicting feelings about legalized prostitution. Clearly, it remains a form of exploitation, and yet in so many ways it is a far superior lifestyle when compared to the brutal life endured by the average street prostitute. In the end, the author doesn’t present many conclusions about the merits of legalized prostitution, leaving readers to draw their own conclusions.

Given the nature of the subject matter here, this was a surprisingly enjoyable book to read, providing a sympathetic inside look at a world that very few readers will ever encounter. The narrative is compelling, and the author does a terrific job in telling the stories of the various people involved in this shadowy industry.

Journal Entry 16 by wingResQgeekwing at Washington, District of Columbia USA on Saturday, June 29, 2013

Released 7 yrs ago (6/29/2013 UTC) at Washington, District of Columbia USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

I brought this to today's meet-up with the visiting Aussies, and it did not come home with me.

Journal Entry 17 by cat207 at Washington, District of Columbia USA on Saturday, June 29, 2013
SforSuperman picked this up at the meet up with the BCinDC Bookcrossers. He will journal it when he remembers his password.

Journal Entry 18 by SforSuperman at Washington, District of Columbia USA on Sunday, July 14, 2013
Finally got a chance to journal - with remembered password.

Working on it.

Journal Entry 19 by cat207 at Gladstone, Queensland Australia on Monday, October 07, 2013
From SforSuperman - for release in Queenstown.

Journal Entry 20 by cat207 at Unconvention 2013 in Queenstown, Otago New Zealand on Friday, October 18, 2013

Released 7 yrs ago (10/18/2013 UTC) at Unconvention 2013 in Queenstown, Otago New Zealand

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

Thank you for picking up this book & I hope you enjoy it. You have not only found yourself a book, but a whole community of book-lovers dedicated to sharing books with each other and the world at large.

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Feel free to read and keep the book, or pass it on to a friend, or even set it free 'in the wild' for someone else to find like you did.

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Journal Entry 21 by romney at Semaphore, South Australia Australia on Saturday, October 19, 2013
Picked up at the Queenstown Unconvention. Will go on my TBR pile or now.

Journal Entry 22 by romney at Semaphore, South Australia Australia on Friday, November 01, 2013
I'd had a couple of drinks when I picked this up, and when I looked at it again I thought "Do I really want to read about a Brothel?" Based on the comments above I thought I wold give it a go. Also like the comments above, I got right into it and enjoyed the read. It was eye-opening without sensationalising the industry.

I will take this to our meet up this month and pass it to another bookcrosser.

Journal Entry 23 by romney at Mockingbird Lounge in Adelaide, South Australia Australia on Sunday, December 08, 2013

Released 6 yrs ago (12/8/2013 UTC) at Mockingbird Lounge in Adelaide, South Australia Australia

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

I hope this book makes someone's day. If it's not your kind of read, journal it, pass it on and join in the fun of watching books you have touched travel the world!

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