(Probably) Not Your Parents’ Summer Book List

It’s summer! Classes are out, the beach is calling your name, and your favorite coffee shop has recovered from finals and has some couches available for your leisurely enjoyment. Summer is the perfect time to crack open a book for pleasure instead of assignment or requirement.


I’ve collected a list of some of my favorite books about healthy relationships, GLBTIQ experiences, and general sex-positive vibes. Check them out for some positive, educational, and enjoyable summer reading!

Yes Means Yes: Visions of Female Sexual Power and a World Without Rape
Eds. Jaclyn Friedman and Jessica Valenti
Yes Means Yes aims to end sexual assault by beginning with changing society’s view of women as sexual conquests and instead viewing them as sexual collaborators in the framework of enthusiastic consent. The book provides commentary on media, pornography, and sex education as it encourages both men and women to enjoy sex and sexuality instead of being ashamed about it.
There is a Yes Means Yes blog that you can check out. Both of the authors have Twitter accounts linked on their names above that you can follow as well!

The Guide to Getting it On, Sixth Edition
Author: Paul Joannides
This sex guide has been translated into 12 languages and won 5 awards. Its 928 pages have tips and reliable but down to earth info on everything you can think of, from uncircumcised penises to sex play to myths about menstruation. It is GLBTIQ friendly and very non-judgmental about people’s bodies and their sexual behavior. There are fun illustrations and you don’t have to read it from cover to cover, it’s the perfect book to pull out and flip to a random page to start learning!
The Guide also has a website where there are exerpts on specific topics from the book, as well as links to the book’s facebook page and youtube channel.

Healing Sex: A Mind-Body Approach to Healing Sexual Trauma
Author: Staci Haines
Haines, an educator in the areas of sex education and somatic healing, put together this sex-positive guide for survivors of sexual assault to support them in saying “yes” to wanted sexual experiences. The author is very direct in her writing, so it’s a good idea to be in a good space when you sit down to read this as it could be triggering. The focus of the book is that not only can sex can be good, positive, and feel safe after you’ve survived a sexual assault, but that having such positive sexual experiences can be an integral part of a survivor’s healing process.

These last two are all super interesting reads and could offer great support to anyone who is questioning their gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation, or who is super sure they’re queer and proud of it!

Genderqueer: Voices from Beyond the Sexual Binary
Eds. Clare Howell, Joan Nestle, and Riki Wilchins
This is a collection of 31 true personal stories of gender construction, exploration, and questioning from folks who don’t fit the traditional male/female binary.

Getting Bi: Voices of Bisexuals Around the World, Second Edition
Authors and Eds: Robyn Ochs and Sarah Rowley
Robyn Ochs, one of the authors and editors of Getting Bi, is a bisexual activist who travels to colleges and universities around the country hosting workshops and lectures on breaking beyond or out of the gender binary.
You can “like” Robyn on Facebook or follow her on Twitter if you dig her book!

You can check your local public library or search the UNC library system catalog online here for these books, or see if they’re available on your  kindle, nook, or other fancy electronic reading device!

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