cementisawkward (cementisawkward) wrote in bookish,

I was given this book as a present from a dear friend, and I loved it. It can be triggering because it addresses rape and assault bluntly. The book's chapter list has tags underneath to help navigate you toward a passage you want to read, at the end of each essay Valenti and Friedman have a list of other essays to read in the book if you enjoyed that one. The tags also are a way to let you know if the chapter will be troubling for you.
The book discusses date rape, sexual violence against immigrants, BDSM, vocalizing consent, among others. One of my favorite essays is written by Brad Perry who talks about how when he was 15 he came close to being an assaulter. They were sipping beer, and he wanted to sleep with a girl. After she said no the second time he stopped. They even stayed friends throughout high school. He then goes over what boys aren't taught, and how he believes this perpetuates a rape culture.

However, even though I earnestly like this book some of the authors can be annoying. One of them when discussing working at a clinic says she's 'psychic' when what she describes is actually just reading body language. They use the words cock, cunt, pussy, dick, fuck, etc. with abandon which annoyed one of my other friends.
The book has 27 chapters which allowed me to pass by the authors I disliked and still be able to read some genuinely good essays.

End result - Some of the authors are irritating. I found the book strangely empowering. My boyfriend saw it and read an essay on body sovereignty, and enjoyed it. It isn't a gender exclusive book, which is why we both find it appealing. The triggering aspect was the part I had the most trouble with. If you are easily triggered you may want to ease yourself into this book, but that is why the tags are nice.
Pick it up from your local library!

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