Book I – Initiation

Book I – Initiation

inititationcover

This provocative true story is about a boy who was initiated into a clandestine sexual society while attending a UK boarding school. As a member of the society, he was sent to the Middle East where he attended the Bahriji School (Oasis) in The United Arab Emirates in preparation for serving in Harems for the wealthy and elite.

This is also a love story between an adolescent and his ‘big brother,’ who served as his chaperone and mentor during the boy’s Harem service.

Excerpts:

Chapter Sixty-One

Notte Sadomasochistico

Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear.

Mark Twain

When Andy returned from his errands he sat me down in our luxurious sitting room and began speaking. “Young, there is something we are going to do this evening that is different and could be shocking to someone like you.”

I was curious, “I’m all ears; tell me more.”

Mu’allmi Ramiz’s Story

Andy said, “Before I begin I have to fill you in a little about Ramiz. You probably already know he is a very religious man and has a number of issues surrounding his sexuality, which he has trouble confiding to anyone.

When he was young, his father found him playing with himself, and also with another boy in his Islamic religious school. His father was very angry and used a leather whip to beat him, thinking that by doing so he would stop what Islam considered sinful.”

Ramiz could not control himself and kept falling back into his sinful sexual habits. Being whipped actually encouraged his sexual thoughts involving another man. After masturbating or a sexual liaison with a male, he would secretly whip himself. He began to crave pain associated with the sex act, self-inflicted or other-inflicted.

I was shocked to hear what my Valet was telling me, but I was also intrigued, and listened attentively.

Andy continued, “When Ramiz was at Oxford University, he stumbled across a homosexual leather bar in London and was amazed to learn that there were others, like him, who liked to roleplay as dominants and submissives.”

I asked, seeking clarity, “You mean like what Professor Henderson taught us about sadomasochistic behavior?”

Andy replied, “Yes, something along those lines but in Ramiz case, it is associated with repentances from his sins. Now he has become addicted to being whipped and abused. After punishment he feels cleansed from his bad behavior until his sexual urges return and the cycle begins all over, again.”

I questioned, “Is that why he couldnt sleep last night and got up early to pray? Does he ask Allah for forgiveness because of his sinful, homosexual thoughts?”

“I suppose,” replied my Valet. “He became a regular at the London S & M underground dungeons, playing the role of slave. Back home it was next to impossible for him to meet people who behaved in a similar fashion. Then, he met us. We, being educated in varied forms of sexual expressions, are open to experimental ways of thinking and doing things. He asked me to play the role of Master, to handcuff him to the bed and to lash him with a leather whip.”

Fascinated by this incredible tale, I enquired, “What am I supposed to do? Where do I come in?”

Smiling, my guardian replied, “You, my darling boy, are to play the part of the savior, to console his pain and anguish during the whipping. Youll soothe him and tell him that he can bear the pain and that the ordeal will soon be over. Gently tell him to be a good man and let his Master have his way with him until his sins are completely cleansed.”

I couldn;t help but burst out laughing! In my mind it seemed so absurd. My Valet reprimanded me for laughing at such a serious matter and said, “Young, you cannot laugh when we are role playing. You have to be dead serious; otherwise your professor will never forgive you for embarrassing him. Our standing at the Hadrah;s Household could be jeopardized.”

I continued asking, “Does Hakim know about Ramiz?”

“I don’t know. Maybe you can ask your mu’allmi after we are done. For now, we must get ready for our evening at Ristorante La Fonticine,” Andy commanded.

At Ristorante La Fonticine

As we sat, waiting for our food in the lavish open air ristorante, I could not help but think of Ramiz’s story. I was looking at my teacher, wondering how in the world this gentle man got himself into a sadomasochistic addiction. Was it years of repression that caused this? Or was he born with such an unusual inclination, the way I was born an effeminate boy? All these thoughts ran through my mind like wildfire, as I wondered what our after dinner-rendezvous would bring.

On one hand, I was curious to find out what happens during sadomasochist play-acting, and I secretly anticipated the meeting. On the other hand, I was worried someone might get hurt, since I had not a clue as to what might happen in such a dangerous game. Although Professor Henderson had given us lectures on such behaviors, class studies are vastly different from reality. All I could do was wait to witness, firsthand, what would transpire in the Conventino Presidential Suite, mu’allmi Ramiz’s chambers. For now, I concluded, I might as well enjoy a fabulous meal, push my fears aside, and let the evening unfold itself.

Within The Conventino Presidential Suite

Andy and I wore thobes without any undergarments when we proceeded to my teacher;s suite at eleven. When we knocked on the chamber door there was no reply. Andy knocked again but there was no response. As we stood, we could hear some groaning noises faintly, through the doors. My Valet decided that we should creep into the room, unheard.

The sitting room was nearly pitch black. The only light was a dim blue nightlight shining from within the bedroom. We tiptoed towards the bedroom door without making any commotion. The door was partially ajar. The television was playing and I could hear moaning and groaning noises, as if someone was in pain.

Ramiz, lying in bed naked, was busy masturbating while watching a pornographic S & M movie. Completely absorbed, he seemed not to notice us standing in the room, watching him play with himself.

When he discovered we were there, he panicked and tried to cover himself, but my Valet was already pinning him down onto the bed. As the two men struggled, I saw Ramiz purposely allowing my guardian to force him into submission rather than trying to wiggle away from his muscular captor. I also noticed that Mu’allmi;s cock was extremely aroused during the wrestling.

Andy snatched a pair of handcuffs from the bedside table and cuffed my teacher;s wrists to the bedposts, face down. Although Ramiz continued to thrash about, his Master controlled him, binding each of his ankles to an end post of the bed. The victim was now under the control of his handsome, dominating Master. Andy blindfolded his conquest with a piece of black material so he could not see who inflicted the blows.

The Master took a black leather horsewhip from a bedside drawer and began whipping his victim;s hairy buttocks. With every wallop, the slave let out a whimpering moan, and his captor commanded him to shut up. He would inflict a tougher punishment if he continued squirming, disobeying his commands.

Andy said in an angry voice, “How many times do I have to tell you not to masturbate or watch those nasty movies?”

Ramiz whimpered, sputtering in a barely audible soft voice, “I’m sorry, Sir! I promise I will not do it again.”

With each plea of apology the Master gave his slave lashes on his buttocks until the poor man was sobbing with remorse. Andy motioned for me to go over to my teacher and lay his tearful face on my lap, so I could console the victim with soothing words of love and understanding, telling him that his ordeal would soon be over if he did as his punisher commanded.

Mu’allmi cried for the whipping to stop. “Please, please Master! I;ll do whatever you command. Spare me this pain and release me.”

“No, you ungrateful man! Allah will never forgive you for your sins.” Andy scolded angrily while raining another blow down on the man’s naked buttocks, yielding another whimpering yelp.

I continued stroking the slaves handsome face, consoling him with compassionate words, leaning down to kiss him on his lips and mouth as he endured another wallop on his backside. Ramiz looked so pathetic that my heart genuinely reached out to him.

The more I consoled my teacher, the further I took on the role of the protector, begging my guardian to stop beating him. Yet, Andy was relentless. Severe blows pelted the mans bottom until it was red and raw from the whipping and spanking. At times, Andy would reach his hand out, to stroke his slave;s engorged penis, jerking him nearly to the point of orgasm, then stopping to strike his buttocks again, unrelentingly.

I could tell Ramiz was enjoying all the attention showered upon him from Andy and me. My guardian savored the role of the punisher, and I was the perfect consoler, allowing Ramiz a mouthful of semen from my fountain of youth. I sensually kissed and caressed every inch of Ramiz body during his punishment.

The Final Ecstatic Torment

By the time we left the Presidential Suite it was almost 3:00 a.m. We were scheduled for an early start to Tuscany that morning. Ramiz seemed deeply satisfied after his punishment. Andy and I were emotionally and physically drained after doing our best to assist Ramiz, who was tangled in remorse, desire and guilt. At least we brought some solace to his tormented soul. We were, indeed, glad we were not in the muallmis shoes. Despite the wealth, education and career success a man may have, he is unsatisfied without the blessing of true love.

When love and skill work together expect a masterpiece.

John Ruskin

26 thoughts on “Book I – Initiation

  1. I enjoyed this book on many levels. Based on my visits to Penang, Young’s description of Malaysia rings true. The story’s narrative voice changes as the hero, Young, matures – going from Malaysia to Britain to Dubai, so it works well as an autobiography. Young’s story is eventually less about sexual awakening than the role of the senses in spiritual and social fulfillment.

    Young and Andy’s time in Venice is an enjoyable Odyssey of food, ancient piazzas and canals, car trips, days in the countryside, and the human form in art, sculpture, and Young’s own adventures.

    Much of this book surprised me, especially his time in Dubai. Young’s closeness to the Arab families was moving and revealing. The richness of homosexual sensuality described eventually erases its aura of being strange and ‘outside’. It emerges as simply part of the human journey. Moreover, it becomes clear that for Young it’s not something he learned or adopted, but felt deeply from the outset. Sexual orientation is thus not a choice or learned or constructed, but is essential to who a person is. The choice involved is acknowledging its presence, not denying it. That was a refreshing, resonating message free of sexual politics.

    The pacing and narration is handled well. Dialogue works fine, and really excels in places. It’s in the nature of a biography that it doesn’t build to an Act 3 crisis/climax. This story does resolve relationship crises near the end, so the Act 3 resolution also works well.
    Overall Young’s interest in and compassion shown to others comes through very strongly throughout.

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book and came to respect the author’s ‘old soul’ humanity.

  2. Author Street Team Review
    By Isaac Ssebaduka

    When you start reading A Harem Boys Saga by Bernard Foong, it’s like many other books. As you go further you enter into a whole new world of this sissy boy, Yoong. You discover a lot about being gay. What comes to mind is that this book was written for Africans. A place where being is equated to a curse and always attracts hatred even from those closest to you. I learn that it is so normal to be gay.

    This book has opened my eyes to a whole new world beyond my imagination. I recommend everyone read this book.

    Thank you Bernard Foong for opening up.

  3. A Scrumptious and Indulgent “Must” Read
    In a culture that prizes the birth of male babies above all else, it is little wonder that Bernard Foong had difficulty with his father reconciling his sexuality. Given that this is a biography, the same culture prices the sexuality accordingly of young, pliant pubescent boys, just like Mr Foong. Raised and surrounded by indulgence, in a sub-culture Westerners not only do not accept but do not understand, Mr Foong emerged strong, centered, developed and extraordinarily talented in the world of design. Indentured, but no slave, the author used his wily skills to his own interests, became educated and learned, traveled the world, developed style and character and loved. If we accept his youth as an interest in another culture, without judgment, I ask: Who among us wouldn’t want to live such a pampered and indulgent lifestyle among royalty and power? Certainly not I. And because of his experiences, Mr Foong has enriched our lives with his narrative, his spectacular life told eloquently, articulately and in rich vibrant colorful detail. This is a scrumptious and indulgent “must” read to add to your collection in this series.

  4. This provocative story is about an adolescent who was initiated into a clandestine sexual society. He was spirited to the Middle East, from his UK boarding school. He attended the Bahriji School (Oasis,) in The United Arab Emirates in preparation for serving in Harems for the wealthy and elite.

    It is also a love story between the young man and his ‘Valet’ who served as his chaperone and mentor during the boy’s Harem service.

    As Bernard Foong says about his induction into a secret sexual society as a young boy, it was not slavery. Instead it was a lavish experience that made Young the man he became – of which gentleness and humility are both a part. As he quotes the word of Jesus of Nazareth, let alone those who are unblemished cast the first stone at the the sinner. It leaves us with one question, “What is sin?”

    When a university prices itself permanently out of reach of most aspiring candidates, is that sin? Or is paying for the tuition with money earned in a flesh trade the real sin? Is sin, then, simply a matter of good marketing and effective social integration – those that make it and hide all else can have a dignity while the rest must bow down for not having followed an invisible book established in our minds, and changing from century to century? Or can there be some degree of allowance and patience we can afford towards someone who is trying to speak his heart out? For he has not killed, nor has he intended to hurt anyone. And that’s more than most of us can say of the famed Kings and warriors of old with causes deemed more noble. That’s more than most of us can say for ourselves.

    Young addresses himself as a sissy boy very early in the story, for he does not subscribe to traditional male roles. If sissy implies a drift from manliness in its generic version, then perhaps Young stands corrected. After all, to face, accept and be at peace with a life such as his requires strength. That’s far cry from any form of sissiness. For, to be a man requires not a constant expression of being strict – that is often used as a show designed to justify one’s manliness when his inner character and its insecurities cannot. No, to be a man is to harbour the strength it takes to endure, to comply with what’s required, and to face facts – a judgement that cannot and should not get influenced by what other men believe.

    “Initiation” is filled with moments – most of which you have to read to believe – that I find myself in a great degree of disagreement with, starting with the very existence of sexual clubs run by a society that otherwise thwarts it in principle. As the author notes, “This game, played behind closed doors by the rich and the powerful, is as old as time. Many believe it has become extinct, but it will always be there, morphing to accommodate or avoid the standards of the day, sometimes going underground.” The protagonist joins it willingly and for the most part, happily treads as far as it takes him. But how many schools and how many such secret societies around the world can guarantee that about the recruited? Perhaps jokes apart, I am simply not open-minded enough to be comfortable around expressions of homosexuality. That, however, is not a pre-requisite to respect and grasp the lesson Young is trying to deliver. For, there is one aspect of this book that cannot be denied – it makes peace where most fail to.

    Bernard’s writing helps this story because he does not shy away. And the words remain simplistic, affirming that he only intends to tell a tale – his own. As Young’s Uncle James tells him, “Eventually, we are bound to outgrow our roots, and become our own person.” So read this book if you have had little guilts hidden away in life’s closet. Read it if you are strong enough to not judge, to accept the reality of our world as it is and to still care.
    Book Review by –
    The Fly
    http://www.kalkievian.com

  5. Reviewed by Gisela Dixon for Readers’ Favorite

    Initiation (A Harem Boy’s Saga Book 1) by Bernard Foong is an absolutely fascinating glimpse into the lives of the ultra-rich and jet-setting Saudi Arabians from the point of the view of a young gay boy from Malaysia. Bernard Foong has changed the names of people in the book for confidentiality reasons and he goes by the name of Young in the book. The story starts with a description of Young’s childhood and early years in Malaysia in a well-to-do family, and describes life in a Malaysian household with a loving mother and a distant father. Young soon realizes that he is gay, which creates a further rift from his father. Eventually, Young is sent to an exclusive private boarding school in England for further studies. Once there, he is recruited into a secret underground society called E.R.O.S. that specializes in providing young teenage boys to wealthy Arab households to become a part of their harem in exchange for a lavish lifestyle and expensive gifts. This is the first book in this series and describes Young’s experiences in his first Saudi household, along with his travels and experiences in London, Paris, Venice, etc.

    Bernard Foong has written a mesmerizing story that almost feels unreal and unbelievable in this modern day and age. However, every part of it is a true story that happened over 40 years ago, and which made me wonder if some of these things still occur in certain parts of the world. I am sure this could not have been an easy story to tell, and full credit goes to Bernard for fearlessly and courageously opening up to the world with a personal and intimate account of his early years. I loved Bernard’s writing style which is extremely engaging and natural, and almost made me feel like I was engaged in a conversation with him instead of reading a book. This is an absolutely fascinating read and I cannot wait to read the remaining books in this series. I would very highly recommend it.

  6. Where to begin? Seldom am I at a loss for words, but this book, an autobiography, not a work of fiction, has left me speechless and deeply moved. I know Young’s intention is to educate the world about a lifestyle which he considers a blessing, but to me, he has done much more than that. We all hear the nature versus nurture argument, and I’ve wondered how much it actually does affect a person’s sexual and emotional development. Parental love and approval play a huge role in a child’s development, and my heart went out to the boy. Even before he was conceived, his fate was written in the stars. While I found parts of the book deeply disturbing, I couldn’t put it down. It was an eye-opening, jaw-dropping look at a culture I never even suspected existed, written 9in simple, easy to follow prose. Well done.

  7. Young provides a thought provoking peek into the privileged life of a young boy as he navigates his way through childhood and into adolescence. This autobiography is so detailed that the reader is led into the intimate depths of the author’s personal experiences. Young reveals the heart-breaking moments he has with his father as he tries to maintain a relationship with him knowing that his father does not accept his sexuality. These are the moments that I feel readers can connect with, as there are many LGBTQ community members that struggle with maintaining familial/parental relationships knowing fully that they may never be accepted or loved solely based on their sexual orientation. Reading that Young’s mother is a champion for him does help to ease the pain a bit, but its not the same as if he had both parents supporting him.

    As we follow Young into his early adolescence, we meet several pivotal people that play a big role in the shaping of his character. We, as readers, are introduced to the many young men and mentors at the prestigious school in England (Daltonbury Academy) at which Young attended. Up until this point, we get to know who Young is as a person and an individual, and nothing seems out of the ordinary in his story as a young, gay male meeting other boys and experiencing the beginnings of his sexuality.

    However, it is shortly after his arrival at Daltonbury, that Young’s story takes a most unbelievable turn. We learn that Young is recruited to participate in a secret fraternity in which he will travel to another country and be a willing participant in a harem. I must admit, at times, the story does not even seem real (I had no idea that such ‘programs’ existed), and at one point, I emailed the author to clarify that this was indeed his true story. Young (a.k.a. Bernard Foong) was more than gracious to respond to all my queries, informing me that the details presented are indeed factual and relayed some of his methods he uses to remember. I am quite amazed at what he has encountered in his life.

    Young’s story then progresses to his experiences as a participant in the “exchange” program. And, although there is very detailed and graphic sexual moments, the story is more than these erotic encounters. It touches upon the emotional lives of the people in the story and shows how their experience in the program was part of their life education.

    I am truly intrigued by Young’s narrative and am currently following up with book 2, Unbridled. The only small criticism would be that it is quite a long read and perhaps, could have been edited just a tad more to provide for a better pacing between Parts One/Two and Parts Three/Four/Five. However, overall, if you are looking for an amazing life story to read, this is definitely one you’ll want to check out.

  8. This is a tale of a young boy’s upbringing in Malaysia, his travels then to Hong Kong and Singapore and on RMS Victoria. Bernard suffers many trials and triumphs for being, as he calls it, a ‘sissy boy’ but his strength of character and determination prevails. When Bernard is sent to Daltonbury Hall, a boarding school in England, he finds himself inducted into a secret society known as E.R.O.S, who train him as a harem boy for service in the Middle East.
    Not only is the tale of his upbringing fascinating but even more so because this is a true story which reveals a little known side of society, with names and places changed accordingly. Bernard, an accomplished fashion designer, is now a full time writer living in Hawaii. While not my usual genre this book was recommended to me and I have to say I’ve never come across anything like this before and found it an astonishing read, and one I cannot do anything but heartily recommend.

  9. “Initiation (A Harem Boy’s Saga Book 1)” by Bernard Foong Young is an amazing memoir revealing quite a remarkable life story. The author shares with great honesty and openness the story of his privileged, yet complicated upbringing as atypical boy in Kuala Lumpur, London and the UNited Arab Emirates. His infatuation with sewing, fashion and men and how his first encounters with the same sex played out for him.
    For me, a European, the insights into Far Eastern and Middle Eastern culture were fascinating, as is the story of the secret society that the author had the opportunity to get involved with.
    The consensual relationships he got into at a young age, his experience of guidance and sexual pleasure are written with thoughtful reflection and youthful honesty.
    The writing is erotic and explicit at times but those scenes are important to understand the personal development the author went through and the nature of said society.
    A book that I found hard to put down. Very recommendable.

  10. First, I must tell you that I don’t read a lot of books, but something about this book intrigued me. First of all it’s a true life story. Now, after reading the first book of the series “A Harem Boy’s Saga” I anxious to read the next one which I just purchased. This memoir made me realize just how big our world really is, and no matter how much you’ve done, traveled, or experienced, there’s always something to learn, something bigger, something our minds never even thought about or knew existed. It’s fascinating to learn about how love, sex, and culture, can be so different, and what some cultures view as wrong, for others it’s normal and accepted. Not to sound cliché, but, one should never judge a book by it’s cover or brief introduction. It’s sometimes hard to believe that the author experienced so much at such a young age; but then again, it was a different time and culture, so keep that in mind. I encourage you to look beyond the sexual parts and get to know the very real people that this story is about. Thank you Bernard for helping me step out of my comfort zone. You’ve helped see the world and it’s people in a whole new way.

  11. “Initiation (A Harem Boy’s Saga Book 1)” by Bernard Foong Young is an amazing memoir revealing quite a remarkable life story. The author shares with great honesty and openess the story of his privileged, yet complicated upbringing as atypical boy in Kuala Lumpur, London and the UNited Arab Emirates. His infatuation with sewing, fashion and men and how his first encounters with the same sex played out for him.
    For me, a European, the insights into Far Eastern and Middle Eastern culture were fascinating, as is the story of the secret society that the author had the opportunity to get involved with.
    The consensual relationships he got into at a young age, his experience of guidance and sexual pleasure are written with thoughtful reflection and youthful honesty.
    The writing is erotic and explicit at times but those scenes are important to understand the personal development the author went through and the nature of said society.
    A book that I found hard to put down. Very recommendable.

  12. 5.0 out of 5 stars OMG, OMG, OMG – I can’t believe this is a real story!

    Never have I read a story that has me exclaiming “OMG, OMG, OMG” every few chapters. This autobiographical story shares the intensely personal journey of a young boy as he comes of age in the midst of a male harem in the middle east. He experiences all the things that forbidden and taboo…you know those “unmentionable elephants in the room” that we are warned about from an early age. I had to read this real life adventure to find out how messed up and damaged he must be. Imagine my surprise to meet an emotionally healthy young man who successfully grabs all life has to offer and does it with an innocence that is simply beautiful.

    Don’t read this book if you aren’t ready for your ingrained beliefs and values to be challenged. Don’t read this book if you are not ready to delve into a side of our global society that is well hidden from most. Don’t read this book unless you too are ready to step into a new adventure. Initiation will change how you view the world.

    Well done Bernard.

  13. This review is from: Initiation (A Harem Boy’s Saga Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
    This is a tale of a young boy’s upbringing in Malaysia, his travels then to Hong Kong and Singapore and on RMS Victoria. Bernard suffers many trials and triumphs for being, as he calls it, a ‘sissy boy’ but his strength of character and determination prevails. When Bernard is sent to Daltonbury Hall, a boarding school in England, he finds himself inducted into a secret society known as E.R.O.S, who train him as a harem boy for service in the Middle East.
    Not only is the tale of his upbringing fascinating but even more so because this is a true story which reveals a little known side of society, with names and places changed accordingly. Bernard, an accomplished fashion designer, is now a full time writer living in Hawaii. While not my usual genre this book was recommended to me and I have to say I’ve never come across anything like this before and found it an astonishing read, and one I cannot do anything but heartily recommend.

  14. This shocking and sensitive story of a beautiful adolescent boy who was plucked from his prestigious private, British boarding school and swept into a world of the Arab elite, Royal, rich and famous is both sexually provocative and touchingly sweet. The author who is now some 40 years older has taken the time to tell this compelling story. I found this book to be very well written and so entertaining that I could not put it down. The writer who must now be nearly sixty years old, managed to tell this story though the eyes of an eager and brilliant teenager who was at the time so positive and open about life that his enthusiasm is infectious it jumps right out of the book and into your room. The story left me wondering how much better the world could be if we just did not judge each other so much and so often. I can’t wait for Book Two.

  15. Elegant and erotic tale

    To say this was a “good” story simply doesn’t do it justice. This is the true tale of a male Courtesan. Or, as the author puts it – A Harem boy. It begins with his life in Malaya as a small child. The honesty and self awareness he had is astounding. I laughed a bit when he called himself a “Sissy boy”. But then he reclaimed that title and I found that he was quite proud of who he was. The toss of the coin by the Gods created a delicate and beautiful soul who was wise beyond his years – at least regarding his own self. His mother captivated me from the beginning. She doted on her youngest son and allowed him to be who he was. I believe it was her unconditional love that helped shape this adventurous and self-aware boy into a man who obviously, and rightly, loves himself. His relationship with his father, although forced and quite what one would expect, wasn’t as bad as it could have been (Happy to read that. At times I feared the worst.). Starting by learning all about his privileged upbringing in a romantic time helped me understand who and what he came from – and in turn – helped me to see the rest of the story from his eyes. I wanted the same things he did and I felt his relief and desperation to leave for boarding school in the UK. From here, our delicate “Sissy Boy” is initiated into the clandestine society E.R.O.S.

    I’ll let the reader get the full story on how that happened. I will say – he was brave, and perhaps a bit naïve. But his childlike trust was not misplaced and he was off on an erotic, and sensual adventure to the Middle East. This is where I truly fell in love with this tale. I felt as if I was reading Arabian Nights and seeing what really happened in the Kosk of a wealthy Middle Eastern man. The world he experienced was lush and opulent – as was the sex. The sexual stories are not graphic in the way one might think. You “see” what you must and, I think, the beloved author still has a few secrets from those times. However, from the fantastical tales he tells, his initiation was beyond the imagination of any young boy of the times. He’s whisked away to Italy, Tunisia, and Paris (among other places). At his young age, he experienced multiple lifetimes.

    As I read the story, I realized this wasn’t simply a naughty tale of his escapades as a teenager. It was a love story. There were so many different kinds of love experienced! From his first “puppy love” experience to very real and deeply felt love that the reader watches blossom, we watch him learn what love is – to him. I also realized, halfway through, this was a love story about himself as well. The author has accepted all of his past and accepted himself in the process. He fell in love with himself and it was beautiful to see. A young, gay teenager who could have easily buckled under the pressure of society and his father to hate himself persevered and chose to walk in love in all that he did. That amazes me. His descriptions are lush and makes the reader yearn to be there, to feel the fabrics, to smell the smells, to taste the food and to see the expressions of love.

    I will give a word of caution about this book – It was a mental hurdle from the beginning to overcome my assumptions and modern judgment of sex by/with/to a minor. After getting about 200 pages in, I set it aside to think about how I was feeling. I realized a few things – this wasn’t an American story. I had to remove my American glasses as I read this and understand it was a tale from a different land and a different time. I also began to understand the vast difference in social and economic classes. His life of privilege allowed many of his sexual proclivities to be accepted and, as in the school in the UK, pushed to new limits. This story has made me wonder about the wealthy classes of people and what other traditions we laypeople know nothing about. Fascinating. As equally fascinating as the inner working of the Muslim homes. Oh, what I wouldn’t give to be transported to such a place. If you can separate your modern, American point of view, and read this story for what it is – you will love it. Much like readers of Anne Rice’s SLEEPING BEAUTY series, this has the same “feel” to it. If you enjoyed that, you will enjoy this as well. I’m a straight woman who doesn’t make a habit of reading homoerotic stories. To each his own, right? But this, this was so much more than just sex confessions. A unique coming of age tale that is beautiful, daring, and provocative. Bravo Young!

  16. A rite of passage, a door to open your mind.
    “Initiation” is a celebration of the power of youth, both physically and intellectually. Curiosity made me open the book, where I was surprised to find a world where eroticism seemed to be be enjoyed on a very fair playing field. Young had already soared high as a pre-teen with a Fashion Show, and then went on to discover dizzying heights of love and eroticism as a teen. His incredible abilities in the Fashion World was nurtured at this time, as he met some of the pioneers of fashion in the Paris Haute Couture houses.He was lucky to have experienced such flights of fantasy, coupled with hard work and discipline at such a young age. He touched and felt the magnificent gowns, and he experienced love and passion in a way that most of us never will. He seems to have come out of it unscathed, with only a desire to tell us about his life, with an innocence and charm that is very enjoyable.

  17. I, like your friends in the book, have come to know you as Young. And like your friends I appreciate who you are. Just loved the story and you are a good storyteller which is no surprise.
    Should I be on Maui I would be at your book signing, but I will, alas, be in Europe.

    The book ‘Initiation’ became a friend to me.
    Though somewhat off beat to my usual literature, I thoroughly enjoyed the read, learning about the mystery school and traveling into glamorous locations and hotspots not usual to most.

    Years ago I was befriended by a Saudi prince. He would visit with my decorator business partner….we would have wonderful parties and sailing trips. He didn’t speak much about his homeland, but he would speak of his father being very strict. He had 75 brothers and sisters and easily spent a lot of money. Thank you for bringing a more in-depth understanding of his world. He was very elegant, sophisticated, mysterious and beautiful.

    The stories have much teaching within the jacket.
    I must say I liked Andy a lot….Nikee was darling, but Andy….well I shed a tear knowing you both had parted. I came to have a lot of respect for the way Andy cared, loved and protected you. He allowed your experiences to unfold naturally.

    The sex was well written….honest, raw yet elegant. Makes you think education has fallen short of it’s guidance. It’s interesting how sex is actually a natural tool toward self discipline, creativity and transformation. Your introduction into this secret society allowed you to continue your innocent exploration of self in a safe environment. How nice for you.

    Your family stories echo’d similar challenges facing many families dealing with fathers running households with the old head of the household paradigm – absolute ruler – prideful and insensitive. In many ways this is an old global story and one that we are gracefully evolving out of.

    I think you bridge an important understanding toward unfamiliar lifestyles that have remained hidden in history. What is not understood creates fear and a negative effect.
    Your offering to share is an actual ritual-truth of decent, safe, playful and, sometimes leading to, a sacred union experience.

    I’m curious to know if your E.R.O.S. vows were broken or did you change the names of people, schools, households and organization? Since I have not had time since finishing the book I might Google to see what I find. Certainly, E.R.O.S. looks familiar somehow. Maybe? Do you know if this education is still being taught in England, Arabia and elsewhere?

    Anyway,
    I found many teachings in the book extremely valuable. It connects very deeply to peace.

    Given free will, you excelled. Certainly, I know you have become esthetically amazing.

    Thank you for acknowledging the consciousness of this wonderful journey.

    Thank you Diana for lending me your book. It was a real pleasure.

    To Your Success!

  18. What a compelling book! The fascinating account of a young Asian boy happily initiated into a sexual society and then Middle-Eastern harems from his private school in England. It is your own initiation to European, Middle Eastern, and Asian culture, combining Young’s ‘coming of age’ with his innocence and eroticism. This book will shatter your preconceptions about gay sexuality.

    Young’s material is fresh, unusual, and provocative. He manages to speak with the voice of the innocent child while chronicling his sexual initiation and service, creating a character with which the reader has great sympathy. He also describes his education, travels, and liasons in a way that has the reader riveted, anticipating each unfolding scene with excitement, and sometimes shock.

    Be patient at first. The setting up of the story with background take a bit of time. At times, the material may seem wordy or lengthy, but definitely worth it.

  19. I was given this book by a friend and started it on a flight. The narrative started slowly but by page 25 I was hooked on this saga. Amazing insights into the Middle East. As I used to do business in the Middle East, I know in my heart this is a true story….patriarchal society with sexual practices that go way under the radar. Young’s done a great job and I look forward to more copies of Volume 1, 2 and 3!

  20. This is a fascinating, almost unbelievable story but it is true, every word, every amazing, mind-stretching scene. I had the privilege of watching the story unfold and I strongly recommend it. Shocking. Salacious. Heart-wrenching. True. This is “50 Shades of Grey” and 100 shades of lavender, pink, purple and brilliant.

  21. I learned so much through this book about Malaysian culture, secret societies in Europe, and the habits and proclivities of Princes and Hadrahs in the United Arab Emirates! From the beginning, when Young’s mother embarks on the Queen Mary, before his birth, to the boys’ school on an island off of the west coast of England, I was drawn into worlds of culture, affluence, and traditions, and then I was invited to peek underneath it all. And I learned of yet another culture. A sub culture. Young’s eye misses nothing. The details he unfurls so fabulously make this a classic.

  22. You are really and truly amazing Bernard. There is nothing you cannot accomplish. You are a testament to belief, manifesting, and never never quitting. Hmm. I want to have your DNA tested for exactly HOW intergalactic you are!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m so happy to know you and love you and to have seen how you work. And how you make raised embroidery and keep flowers in your refrig!! I AM HAPPY FOR YOU!!!!!!!!!! And always mightily impressed.
    Wishing you great great great success.
    Love, Christine Maynard

  23. Without doubt ‘A HAREM BOYS SAGA’ is a very extraordinary story which should be made into an epic Movie. I have read many books with stories about young men indulging in innocent sex. I have even been involved and have voiced it in my recent book. But Bernard is a master at telling a fascinating story which makes me want to read, read and read. This is a book that just looking at it makes you want to pick it up and find out what this young chap is up to now. Bernards description of the juicy bits is very well penned and cleverly done. ‘UNBRIDLED’ is laying on my bedside table and quite honestly I can’t wait to get my sticky fingers on that one. This is what reading is all about.

  24. 5 out of 5 stars A revelation, an education, a journey!

    Looking forward to the remainder of the series as Bernard shares his exploration on a canvas of discovery, shock, emotion, excitement, all bound by words of genuine self and honesty and most of all love! A riveting story….amazing revelations page after page. Beyond imagining. But reality is often grander than fiction as told here! A+ for writing your story, Bernard, for sharing the core of a private world so intimate and fascinating, woven together in your words, the beauty of which makes this topic, above all a love story, a very readable fifty-shades plus!

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