I have read quite a few books on the wonderful topic of sex, most of them are non-fiction and most of them are quite technical. I have chosen a few books that are good for the general public to read without having to know alot about sex before picking them up. I know many of my readers are quite capable of reading an in-depth book on human sexuality but i've been accused of recommending books that are a hard read unless you know alot on the subject.

My first book was a very fun and informative read: Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach. Mary takes some of the most curious and off-the-wall questions and seeks out an answer. She answers questions such as: Can a woman think herself to orgasm? Why doesn't Viagra help women? Can a dead man get an erection? I admire the lengths to which Mary took to get her research, from taking part in experiments, to travelling to China and the Middleeast. I can say that her efforts paid off with this final product. There are alot of technical aspects to this book but I found it a very easy and interesting read. I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to know some of the more...strange side of sexuality.

The second book is more on the serious side of things: The Transgender Child by Stephanie Brill and Rachel Pepper. The topic of transgendered people is being pushed into the public sector more and more as of late. This book has been written for parents and physicians of transgendered childern but I believe that everyone should read it. For thoes readers that have not been exposed to the topic of transgender, essentially it means you do not feel like your biological sex matches your gender. For example: You are a boy but you feel like a mistake has been made and you should have been born a girl because that is how you feel. Later in life people who are transgendered may undergo hormone therapy and even a sex change operation, but that is not universal. This book is probably the most in-depth book on the shelves relating to this topic and I highly recommend picking it up. The style of writing is easy to digest and is essential if you happen to have a child who is transgendered or if you just want to know more on the subject. More books like this and public exposure on the topic will lead to more public understanding, that is why I recommend you read this book.

The last book I will recommend today is one of the few (probably the only) fiction books I have read since I started school: Middlesex by Jeffery Eugenides. The primary subject of this book is little Callie and her journey to becoming Cal. Cal is intersexed, meaning he was born with a genetic anomaly that results in ambiguious genetalia. I won't get into the medical specifics but at birth they announced him as a girl according to the outward appearance of his genetalia but he is biogically a male. This book was a bit of a different read in the fact that the story didn't start with Cal, you don't see him until halfway through the book or later. The story is following the genetic anomaly that resulted in Cal's condition. The story starts with his grandparents and works its way to his parents. It is necessary to know the history of his family to understand his current situation but I felt anxious throughout the whole thing, wondering when we were going to get to the main character. Overall, I would recommend this book as it was a good read, it even explains the factors that causes intersexuality and introduces us to the controversial topic of assigning a gender to people with this genetic mutation. Often, what will happen when an intersexed child is born is the doctor will recommend surgery to assign the most likely sex. The problem with this is the assigned sex is not always right and this results in identity crisis, depression, and sometimes suicide. Luckily, it is becoming more common for a doctor to recommend that the child decide when they are old enough and to hold off on surgery until then (if necessary at all).

I own all of these books and if anyone wants to borrow them I am more than happy to do so, I would recommend reading all three if there is any interest on the topics.



Until next time,
Janice 

*Originally posted on June 7, 2011*