(Original Review, 1981-04-04)
Histoire de Juliette ou les Prospérités du Vice (Story of Juliette or The Prosperities of Vice) by de Sade.
Profoundly disturbing - not only in its depiction of cold-hearted indulgence, by way of a text nearly as long as War and Peace, in murder, rape, robbery and more horrors besides, but also in its capability to beguile and confuse readers of a feminist persuasion.
Angela Carter fell for it: "[Sade's] great women [characters in Juliette], ... once they have tasted power, once they know how to use their sexuality as an instrument of aggression, they use it to extract vengeance for the humiliations they were forced to endure as the passive objects of the sexual energy of others ...”
If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.