Sex Talk: Bedroom Books

By Ahsika Sanders Are you looking to take a break from the school books and slip into the covers of something a little more satisfying? Well here are a few sexy reads that will touch on and teach you things you’d probably never imagined.

50 Shades of Grey by E.L. James

This book took the summer scene by storm and made many a reading list. The series is a fiction fan’s fantasy, thriving on imagination, and the explicit sex scenes quickly overtake the plot. Throughout the novel, you get to know playboy Christian Grey whose entire life is a dream. He is filthy rich, incredibly handsome and great with women; an all around charmer. It has all the makings of your standard harlequin novel but is heavily peppered with sadism/masochism (BDSM).

UT alumna and avid reader Travette Webster read the first and second novels:

“I loved the first one as it grasped my attention from the very beginning. There were so many twists and turns in the plot I couldn't put the book down. I immediately downloaded the second book, and unfortunately that's where my intrigue ended. The plot flew completely out of the window, and all that was left was a graphic tale of the sexual encounters between an inexperienced young woman and a disturbed sexual deviant. However, E.L. James is an amazing writer, and if she focused more on the plot, this might have been one of my favorite trilogies.”

While Travette was turned off but the overpowering sex in the novels, 23-year-old Rachael Carter says the books made her feel empowered.

“I read the whole series of 50 Shades, and I feel like in reading them, I grew a lot sexually and it opened my mind to being more comfortable with my partner whomever that may be, to be proud of my body and the ways it can feel, and that sex is about power as well as emotional connections," Carter says. "I think more women need to grasp their sexuality and be more knowledgeable about what being sexual beings is. This book cracks open that door for a huge group of women.”

The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists by Neil Strauss

Strauss, a former New York Times writer belongs to a “seduction community” and has written a number of books on sex-capades, romance and living the life as a pick-up artist.

The Game functions as a look into a secret society of pick up artists. In it, Strauss details his encounters with other players and he details encounters in seduction with celebrities Britney Spears, Tom Cruise, Andy Dick and Courtney Love.

For those of you who aren’t sex-savvy, the “seduction community” is a sub-culture of men who have created quick and effective techniques to better seduce women. Stauss writes about Ross Jefferies, the man known as the pioneer of the seduction society, who promoted neuro-linguistic programming – an approach to communication and personal development designed to alleviate phobias, depression and habit disorders. Ross paved the way for a slew of seduction gurus as detailed in Struass’s bible-esque guide to this underground society.

Donovan at the Austin Chronicle called the book, “one of the most complete and entertaining guides on the subject of seduction [he] has ever seen,” but admits that “it will not improve your game with women to the level you'll want” because Strauss is a bit vague in his description of tactics. Donovan suggests Art of Approaching, or Double Your Dating for a more thorough guide.

Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think about Love, Relationships Intimacy and Commitment and Striaght Talk: No Chaser by Steve Harvey

Harvey’s first book was such a success that it was adapted into a major motion picture with an all-star celebrity cast. The novel gives tips on how to get your man down the aisle after years of a monogamous relationship, tips on how to avoid the ever-dreaded hit-it-and-quit-it effect premature sex has on men and even ways to maintain effective communication in your relationship. The first book touches on “words that make me run for cover” and “how men distinguish between the marrying types and the play things.”

Reader review:

“I really liked the fact that it offered the real opinion of a man who’s not the guy you’re dating because was more objective and honest. I will say at times there were things that just didn’t apply to me like when to introduce your child to a new man and stuff. I can’t say that I learned anything that I didn’t know before but it definitely reaffirmed some things and hearing them from a man’s point of view was refreshing so it speaks a little bit more to the discourse of relationship talk. I feel that so often it is women telling other women what to do. I loved hearing a man talk about the kind of stuff we wonder about. ”

The second book, as indicated by the title, aims to help women find a “good man” by helping them understand how men function. The book is broken into three sections: Understanding Men, Finding a Man, and Keeping a Man. In the first section you will find chapters such as “Every Sugar Daddy Ain’t Sweet” and a guide to the ways men view relationship in their 20s 30s, 40s, etc. Among other things, the section designed to help you find your man, gives tips on how to ask all the right questions when considering a potential suitor and how to tell whether or not he is answering truthfully. The final section on “Keeping a Man” includes chapters on “how to get what you want without nagging,” how to show your appreciation for your, how to handle money problems in a relation and how to get a man to give you what you want.

He’s Just Not That Into You: The No-Excuses Truth to Understanding Guys by Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo

Another dating guide-turned-feature film, this novel is a perfect fit for the single Cosmo reader dying to know what it takes to snag and bag a real keeper. Nia Crosley, UT undergraduate academic advisor discusses her likes and dislikes of the book that she found insightful but a bit condescending at times.

Reader reviews:

“I read the book when I was in high school, which is kind of the breeding ground for unrequited relationships. The material sort of rocked my world. I had never considered that someone just wouldn't like me, or that I couldn't MAKE someone like me back, so honestly the book didn't really have that much impact at first because I didn't believe it (and probably wasn't really that invested/interested in a real relationship anyway at this point)."

“I would suggest the book to someone who is seriously looking for love and doesn't value themselves as much. I think you have to have both going on to get anything helpful from it... and also, the book was kind of sexist in general, the idea that we need a man to explain to us helpless females how to get into a relationship.”