A New York Times Bestseller
"Rich in dexterous innuendo, laugh-out-loud humor and illuminating fact. It’s compulsively readable." —Los Angeles Times Book Review
In Bonk, the best-selling author of Stiff turns her outrageous curiosity and insight on the most alluring scientific subject of all: sex. Can a person think herself to orgasm? Why doesn't Viagra help women—or, for that matter, pandas? Can a dead man get an erection? Is vaginal orgasm a myth? Mary Roach shows us how and why sexual arousal and orgasm—two of the most complex, delightful, and amazing scientific phenomena on earth—can be so hard to achieve and what science is doing to make the bedroom a more satisfying place.
Roach is not like other science writers. She doesn't write about genes or black holes or Schr dinger's cat. Instead, she ventures out to the fringes of science, where the oddballs ponder how cadavers decay (in her debut, Stiff) and whether you can weigh a person's soul (in Spook). Now she explores the sexiest subject of all: sex, and such questions as, what is an orgasm? How is it possible for paraplegics to have them? What does woman want, and can a man give it to her if her clitoris is too far from her vagina? At times the narrative feels insubstantial and digressive (how much do you need to know about inseminating sows?), but Roach's ever-present eye and ear for the absurd and her loopy sense of humor make her a delectable guide through this unesteemed scientific outback. The payoff comes with subjects like female orgasm (yes, it's complicated), and characters like Ahmed Shafik, who defies Cairo's religious repressiveness to conduct his sex research. Roach's forays offer fascinating evidence of the full range of human weirdness, the nonsense that has often passed for medical science and, more poignantly, the extreme lengths to which people will go to find sexual satisfaction.
Skip the download - buy the book
This is Mary Roach at her most curious and funniest. BUT, the e-book lacks the extensive footnotes found on nearly every page of the printed book. Mary's footnotes are full of relevant information and hilarious observations. Example page 195: "... Meston called the questionnaire the Washington Examination of Expected Negative Identity Post-Peyronie's: the WEENIE PP."
Without the footnotes you're missing some valuable background information and only getting half of her sense of humor.
Funny and informative
Mary Roach is a fantastic author. I have read Stiff and Bonk and enjoyed both very much. She has an entertaining way of writing that keeps her witty comments intact but also allows you to learn about the subject she is focusing on. I am a freak for medical books and this one was very interesting to me.
Footnotes Have Become Endnotes
This was a fun little read. It’s strange, hilarious, and cringeworthy at different times. This is more on the scientific level, but if you just need to find a way to be comfortable talking about sex and sexuality, this book will absolutely do that. All the variations on the word coitus made me think of Sheldon from Big Bang Theory, and (I think rather unintentionally) she broaches the topic of the effects of negative messaging about sex from religious organisations.
The footnotes have become endnotes for the ebook, allowing the reader to adjust font size without throwing off the formatting of footnotes. There are active links to each note where it belongs in the text (click on an * to go to the note in question, click it again to go back to the book) which allows readers to access them easily without formatting issues.