Each year about this time I begin doing a mental inventory of what I considered to be the best books I’ve read over the last six months. While I’m not 100 per cent sure which books will be on that “Best Books at Mid-year” list I do know of one book which for sure will be included. That book is Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach. Roach, best-selling science writer and author of the acclaimed books Stiff and Spook has written an incredibly interesting and perhaps above all wondrously funny tour of the world of sex. By visiting numerous scientists, doctors, researchers and professionals of every conceivable type, Roach’s first person account reads like a quirky and intelligent travelogue of the borderlands of human (and animal) sexuality. Her book is too smart to be smutty and too well-written and clever to be dry. Roach’s book is also filled with hilarious little footnotes, making it the best use of footnotes I’ve ever seen since Manuel Puig’s classic novel Kiss of the Spider Woman. Bonk entertains while it educates.
This was one of the books I saw on a library shelf and based solely on word of mouth, in this case regarding her previous book Stiff, I grabbed. Sometimes life rewards you if you take a chance. I took a chance with Bonk. I was not disappointed.