Monday, July 18, 2016

Come as You Are: The Surprising New Science that Will Transform Your Sex Life (by Emily Nagoski)

This was my "science" selection for the Read Harder Challenge this year. It's a well-reviewed book about the science of women's sexuality.

The science is interesting and I definitely got a lot of knowledge out of this book. But the tone is so not my style at all.  The only word for it is condescending. It starts off with every other page waxing rhapsodic about how our genitals are all perfect and normal and beautiful and did I mention beautiful? (Actual quote: "not just normal, but amazing and beautiful and captivating and delicious and enticing, on down the alphabet, all the way to zesty.") Sure, that's a good message, but at one point I was like, "lady, if you tell me how beautiful my vulva is one more time..." 

The science is also, quite frankly, dumbed down. Another choice quote: "I want to warn you ahead of time: This is the nerdiest, scienciest chapter in the book. Dust off your thinking cap." [Some extremely intelligible science.] "Did you make it? Phew! That was the hard part." There are also a whole lot of irritating metaphors. Our sexuality is a garden, a sleepy hedgehog, the One Ring from Lord of the Rings, we have Feels.... oh my god stop. Please stop.

This book has almost five stars on Amazon and clearly it is landing with its intended audience. I'm glad it's accessible, I'm glad people find it useful, and again -- the science is worth reading about! But I could not handle the sleepy hedgehog and zesty vulva business.  ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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