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REVIEW: Sex: A Book for Teens

I had such high hopes for this book after reading the good reviews of the Midwest Teen Sex Show. Plus, I just read "s.e.x." by Heather Corinna (which was amazing) so this left me extra disappointed.

Don't get me wrong, this book isn't all bad. The humor will grab the attention of teens who might otherwise be loathe to read a sex-ed book, and it's not so long that it will scare people away. The author is very pro-masturbation (yay!) and gives a great admonition to boys about not harassing the girls about their periods ("You wouldn't want the girls making jokes about your occasional boners, so let them bleed in peace.") It was frustrating that the humor seemed to come at the expense of good information though. For example, when talking about getting your period unexpectedly they referred to it as a "battle wound", and they make fun of the "freakiness" of certain fetishes.

And not all the information was good. There's a section on loving your body, but it's followed by a section on how much you should try to not be fat. Love your body, as long as it's thin, but make sure you don't get an eating disorder in the process. Then they have a decent explanation of trans issues but then insist on discussing "both sexes" throughout the rest of the book. They even divide up sex acts by orientation (straight vaginal sex vs lesbian vaginal sex, for example) and there is no allowance for people having sex outside of their chosen sexual identity.

Then there were little annoyances: plenty of talk of manual sex but no discussion of gloves, insistence that BDSM is never for teens (sorry kinky teens, you'll just have to wait), and wanting to date more than one person means you can't commit. The final straw for me was their discussion of the g-spot, which started with "Many believe that there is a region called the G-spot that is thought to be more sensitive than other parts of the vain. It is said to be an area inside the vagina on the upper wall about 2 to 3 inches in." "Many believe"? "It is said"? If you don't believe that the g-spot exists, at least explain why.

Overall, I wouldn't recommend this book unless the reader really needs the humor to make it through. There are better options out there.

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