When I did my year end review of books I read in 2008, I mentioned that it was my goal to read 12 non-fiction books this year–one per month. On Last Monday, it occurred to me that January was almost over so I needed to get my ass in gear and pick up something non-fiction. So, I headed to the bookstore and picked up Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach.
I’ve been wanting to read Bonk for awhile. I’ve read Stiff and Spook, both by Mary Roach and both funny as hell, so I figured Bonk would be along similar lines. It didn’t disappoint. Scicurious at Neurotopia has already written a stellar review of the book that I pretty much agree with so I’ll just give you a few of my impressions.
It’s a fast and fun read (which is what I need in a book these days). The style of the book is such that you feel it’s as though your best friend went and did a whole bunch of research about sex and now you’re talking about it over lunch. (Although, when I was telling R about the book over lunch the other day, at one point she said, “This subject makes me uncomfortable.” So, I guess it would have to be a pretty uninhibited best friend.) Roach has the kind of sense of humor and curiosity that I can relate to. And she’s not shy about it. If I met a man whose job it was to artificially inseminate pigs I’m pretty sure that there would be some questions in my head that I simply wouldn’t ask. Roach doesn’t have that kind of inhibition. And you got to admire someone who was so curious about a particular study that she went and participated in it herself (btw, her husband must be a saint; if I asked my husband to participate in a study where we have sex while a doctor stands next to us operating an ultrasound machine and giving us instructions, I’m absolutely certain he would look at me like I’d been smoking crack).
So, all in all, I would highly recommend Bonk to anyone looking for some interesting and lighthearted non-fiction to read. Next on the non-fiction agenda: The Wordy Shipmates by Sarah Vowell.
P.S. On the fiction front: still mostly reading vampire smut. I think I may have a problem.