Continuing the trend of curating resources this year for Sexual Health Month, I'm back with a power packed reads for the sexually curious minds. There is something for everyone and I'm not kidding about it! From sex education guides to books that help you be a pro and everything in between, I got you.
To give you a context for the reading list, I have used broad themes to curate this guide, including:
Masturbation (solo and/or partnered adventures)
Ethical polygamy, healthy monogamy, and open relationships
Marriage, long-term relationships and sexuality
Dating and queer sex
Kink, fetishes and BDSM
Healing from sexual pain
Body image and trauma
This is obviously a non-exhaustive guide, but definitely a good place to start your journey. So, let's dive in, shall we?
Sex From Scratch: Making Your Own Relationship Rules
by Sarah Mirk
Modern life calls for modern relationship advice. Sex From Scratch is a love and dating guidebook that gleans real-life knowledge from smart people in a variety of nontraditional relationships. Instead of telling people how to snag a man, seduce a woman, or find "true love," the book sums up what dozens of diverse folks have learned the hard way over time. Sarah Mirk offers tips and stories from the steadfastly single to people making open relationships work, from people who've decided they're never going to have kids to parents who are consciously producing the next generation. No matter what type of relationship you're in or what type you want, Mirk's wisdom and sense of humor provide perspective, humor, and down-to-earth guidance. This is an essential, fun, insightful resource whose time has come.
by Adrienne Maree Brown
How do we make social justice the most pleasurable human experience? How can we awaken within ourselves desires that make it impossible to settle for anything less than a fulfilling life? Editor Adrienne Maree Brown finds the answer in something she calls "Pleasure Activism," a politics of healing and happiness that explodes the dour myth that changing the world is just another form of work. The book covers an array of subjects—from sex work to climate change, from race and gender to sex and drugs—they create new narratives about how politics can feel good and how what feels good always has a complex politics of its own.
Bang!: Mastubartion for All Genders and Sexualities
by Vic Niu
Want to know how to masturbate? Here’s your guide. Whether you’re jerking the gherkin, flicking the bean, or something in between, masturbation doesn’t have to be a taboo topic. This straightforward, unapologetic illustrated guide to self-pleasure will teach you what you need to know to get to know your own body. This inclusive manual covers basic anatomy, techniques, mindsets, orgasms, troubleshooting, and a wide range of the tools and toys. There are sections on debunking myths, exploring your body for the first time, sex toys, tips from trans people for trans people, and a section on masturbating when you have a physical disability and a caretaker that’s written by disabled folks. You’ll also learn about the history of anti-masturbation stigma, some thought-provoking data, and how to teach your kids healthy attitudes toward masturbation. Perfect for the pent-up teens and adults of all ages alike! Overcome physical and emotional obstacles to discover the stress-relieving potential and joy of unpartnered sex. It includes writing and illustrations by Vic Liu, Nina Chausow, Alex Tait, Clare Edgeman, Leah Holmes, Sam Dusing, Patrick Wiedeman, Rebecca Bedell, Lafayette Matthews, Andrew Gurza, and Angus Andrews.
Queerly Autistic: The Ultimate Guide For LGTQIA+ Teens On The Spectrum
by Erin Ekins
In this empowering and honest guide for LGBTQIA+ autistic teens, Erin Ekins gives you all the tools you need to figure out and explore your gender identity and sexuality. From coming out to friends and family, staying safe in relationships and practicing safe sex, through to self-care and coping with bullying, being out and about in the LGBTQIA+ community and undergoing gender transition, this book is filled with essential information, advice, support and resources to help you on your journey, and also works as a primer on all things LGBTQIA+ for non-autistic teens who are just figuring it all out. Written by an inspirational autistic queer woman, this is a must-read for every autistic teen wanting to live their very best queer life.
Carnal Knowledge: Sex Ed You Didn’t Get in School
by Zoë Ligon
When it comes to sex, there's practically no question that Zoë Ligon hasn't heard and researched. Her Instagram and YouTube videos, as well as product reviews, are extremely popular for their up-front approach. Now, she brings her wealth of experience and open-minded attitude to a sex-positive guidebook that's honest, inclusive, and right on time. Lusciously illustrated, this book takes readers through every aspect of sexuality - from body basics and physiology to maintaining healthy relationships. It highlights the usefulness of sex toys in aiding solo and partnered exploration and explains why there should really be no stigma around using these practical tools. It also includes advice on setting boundaries, being respectful of other people's gender identities, and thinking outside the orgasm. Elizabeth Renstrom's dreamy, colorful photographs drive home Ligon's philosophy that there's no one "right" way to have sex. With its focus on intimacy, body positivity, and self-care, Carnal Knowledge can lead you to enjoy sex with security and confidence.
You Are Not Broken
by K J Casperson, MD
In You Are Not Broken, Dr. Kelly Casperson, offers a unique perspective as a urologist, coach, and fellow woman wondering, when it comes to sex, “Is this all there is?” Dr. Kelly explores how to adjust your mindset and provides an in-depth look at what makes women physiologically unique. Better sex creates a better relationship between you and your partner. With real-life stories, ideas for journaling, and tips to get the conversation going, this book is the sex empowerment secret weapon you really need to live the life you’ve always wanted.
Bliss Club: Sex Tips For Creative Lovers
by Jüne Plã
In Bliss Club, Jüne Plã teaches you how to let go of your hang-ups and explore your sexuality at your own pace. You will learn everything there is to know about sex outside of the ‘penetration’ box, regardless of your gender or sexual orientation. With maps of pleasure zones as well as an inventory of moves, it is full of tips and tricks on how to pleasure yourself and your partner, resulting in explosive new experiences. Whether you’re a virgin or sex expert, Bliss Club is perfect for anyone wanting to reinvigorate their sex life.
The Game of Desire: 5 Surprising Secrets to Dating with Dominance and Getting What You Want
by Shannon Boodram
In this essential how-to guide, she addresses the realities of life today - when the rules of love and attraction are fluid - and teaches a group of young women how to become master daters in just 60 days.
It starts with you. Shan clarifies that love and self-discovery go hand in hand - your dating life is just as much about you as it is about other people. She challenges you to look inside yourself for what you want out of a partner, a relationship, and, most importantly, yourself. Once you figure out what you want from dating, she shows you exactly how to get it. The Game of Desire empowers you to take the lead, learn your strengths, and identify and correct your weaknesses, all the while getting inspired by watching a group of women learn how to succeed in today’s dating pool. While many books tell women why they can’t get a date, Shan teaches you the skills and techniques necessary to take charge in today’s competitive and often confusing dating scene, providing the tools essential to attract - and keep - the partner(s) you want.
From learning love languages to debunking dating myths, she helps women build knowledge and confidence. Featuring conversational case studies, comprehensive facts about the psychology of sex and romance, and expert insight into sex culture, and written with her trademark humor and charm, The Game of Desire is a must for all of Shan’s fans and for every woman struggling to feel loved and desired.
Mating in Captivity
by Esther Perel
One of the world’s most respected voices on erotic intelligence, Esther Perel offers a bold, provocative new take on intimacy and sex. Mating in Captivity invites us to explore the paradoxical union of domesticity and sexual desire, and explains what it takes to bring lust home. It examines the complexities of sustaining desire through case studies and lively discussion; demonstrating how more exciting, playful, and even poetic sex is possible in long-term relationships. Wise, witty, and as revelatory as it is straightforward, Mating in Captivity is a sensational book that will transform the way you live and love.