Guide to Getting It On!: Sixth Edition - book by Goofy Foot Press - review by T&A1987

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Don't Panic, Just Read The Guide.

Almost any sex topic a person wonders about is addressed by an author with a PhD., so the information is trustworthy. Covering sexual health, anatomy, relationship advice, history, some mechanics and political science, when shared with a friend, this is like freshman year of college in book form, at 1/1000 the cost.
Published:
Pros:
Easy to read, covers a lot of topics and is relatable.
Cons:
Lacks in specifics and focuses too much on theory rather than methods.
Rating by reviewer:
4
extremely useful review

Content / Style / Audience

The name of the publishing company explains the style in a nutshell, “Goofy Foot Press.” The author, Paul Joannides, weaves humor throughout most chapters, which reassures those intimidated by the subject and is just fun for those not intimidated. Sometimes, as the book points out, sex is taken too seriously and a good joke is needed to lighten the mood.

It’s difficult to go more than a few pages without seeing their humor. The illustrations, when not comical, are often lighthearted, as evidenced by chapter 29’s illustration of an elderly couple, each using a walker, kissing, while holding a copy of the Guide. There are also copious illustrations of voyeuristic cats, which is more amusing than it sounds.

Cartoons and illustrations are frequent throughout the book, which range from instructional (Pelvic examination, page 582) to silly (A couple using their laptops during intercourse, page 915). This sends, at least to me, a simple, but important message: sex is best when you can laugh with it. Either that or they just enjoy cartoons with voyeuristic cats, because those kitties are EVERYWHERE.

Sex isn’t taken too seriously, but they don’t joke around either. Where the Guide excels, especially compared to other sex books and sex humorists, is that it doesn't rely upon copious sex puns. Whereas books like “Sex is Fun” have dozens of characters named Dick and Virginia, the Guide doesn’t often stoop to this usually repetitive humor.

Further, there’s a personal touch to the Guide. Most chapters and every chapter of importance have reader’s comments about the topic, ensuring more than just a scholarly review of sex. The questions of the readers are similarly important and have been answered throughout the book, demonstrating the Guide’s dedication to both its readers and the personal touch.

Readers who see sex as sacred, serious, or stoic may not enjoy the tone, however. My personal sense of humor regarding the issue is pretty good (I hope so at least) but I cannot speak for everyone and the humor may seem offensive or wrong to some. Of course, those might be the people that need to read this the most.
  • Who / How / What
    [ ? ]
    Who might this product be best for? How is it best used? What are the best circumstances or situations for using this product?
    • Couples
    • Individuals.
    • Sex education
  • Where
    [ ? ]
    Where / what types of places can this product be used?
    • Home
  • General
    [ ? ]
    Other tags that are useful and descriptive for this product.
    • Good mix of styles and content
    • Humorous
    • Instructional / educational

Design

The Goofy Foot Press chose to go with paper for the materials, this turned out to be a wise decision. While metal and plastic are easier to clean than paper and have superior resilience, those books are often heavier and more expensive. Even made of paper, however, it’s still quite heavy.

At 1000 pages, it’s larger than any Harry Potter novel and a handful of Stephen King novels. This additional heft and volume opens up a myriad of uses other than reading. It can be used as a hat, or more accurately, a helmet, as well as a blunt object, table balancer and bug killer.

Seriously though, the book is quite large. This makes transportation and storage somewhat more difficult than lighter books, as it’s more apt to fall over and takes up more space. The front cover is discrete, other than the term “getting it on” but the back cover has ads for two other books that are less discrete. I would not recommend reading it outside if discretion is a concern.

The interior layout has numerous illustrations, that fit perfectly with the chapters. Said illustrations are detailed, a few qualifying as diagrams, but would not be considered obscene (at least not by most). No photographs were included.
    • Diagrams / photos included
    • Soft cover

Experience

Do you have a question about sex? How to perform oral sex? Cybersex? The history of Barbie, the bra and sex in the 1800s? The Guide To Getting It On will answer these questions while successfully walking the line between serious and silly. Sadly, where it succeeds in breadth, it fails in depth of detail and its preference for theory over methods, but it still succeeds compared to many other books in knowledge and tone.

To begin, consider the ambiance of the Guide. It opens with an illustration of a couple kissing and on the flip is a knight groping the Queen. This is a book that doesn’t take itself too seriously. The atmosphere was already described, but readers should remember this: the light tone does not mean a slipshod work.

While the atmosphere is appreciated, how does the Guide help answering common sex questions, especially for beginners? That depends on what a person wants to know, but for most of the common questions, the book excels in the basics, but fails in specifics. It’s still better than alternative books on the same topics.

Consider looking at this book from the view of the inexperienced. Nearly every possible sex question is addressed and, if not explained, described. The best chapters for the inexperienced or those who know the inexperienced are pages 175-366. These chapters cover every type of sex, including masturbation and sex toys, as well as foreskin issues, but have some problems, as demonstrated by chapter 28.

Chapter 28, “Your First intercourse” pages 374-384, offers a litany of advice for the first time, but like much of the book, it feels more like advice than instructions. "Go slow and ask”, “Use pillows and lube” and a subsequent chapter entitled “The first time, not what you think” provide insight into the emotional, but not physical aspect of sex. People and couples are of course different, a point they rely heavily, perhaps too heavily on, so they can’t be too descriptive, but a list of common, popular physical acts would have been helpful.

Speaking of physical acts, the Guide does not list common sex positions, the mechanics, or even advice for them. This may not be part of the fundamentals, but it certainly cannot be so advanced that it doesn’t warrant at least a mention. Pages 176-366, not counting chapter 28, offer better advice in regard to the mechanics of sex, but do tend to focus more on the theory than methods.

Chapter 15, in regards to finger sex, the mechanical advice, “don’t press too hard, ask what she wants,” is intermingled with the theory, “don’t make orgasms you goal, be sensitive". Chapter 19, regarding oral sex does this as well, offering positions, and a list of basics, as well as the standbys of ask your partner what they like and don’t be arrogant. For beginners, the book is useful, but the information is hard to discern without additional knowledge.

As so much of the information is theory, “don’t be arrogant”, “ask questions”, “try to get the proper rhythm”, without actual experience, it is not very useful. Half of the non-mechanical advice is dependent upon the partner and the rest is at odds with preconceived knowledge, necessitating confirmation. That being said, it paints a vivid picture of what to expect regarding most types of sex.

What the Guide lacks in mechanics however, it more than makes up for in theory and detail. The Guide covers an amazing breadth of topic, in a linear manner. Rather than jumping right into sex, as other books might, the first hundred pages combine refresher courses in human anatomy, with the importance of romance and nakedness. It’s not until a person is prepped on anatomy, lube, discussing sex with their partner and current sex laws that it begins to discuss the most common topics, oral, anal and intercourse sex.

Such diversity of topics is possible in a 1000 page tome and the result is that any topic under the sun is discussed. Chapter 26 discusses foreskin, chapter 71 is a history of men's underwear, with 72’s companion piece on the bra, while chapters 30-32 encompass new issues arising from the intertwining of sex and the internet. Nearly any question, regardless of how odd are mentioned and described in some detail.

It’s that “some detail” that is one of the Guides only other failings: it lacks depth with some chapters leaving readers wanting and not in a good way. Consider chapter 77, “God & Sex” which describes a topic that could fill libraries and condenses it to a single two sided page (with two quarter page illustrations). As good as the Guide is I have to question the logic of including topics if they’re only going to be discussed for a page or two.

Lacking in depth or not, this book does not pad for space. Some books, such as “Lip Service: A His and Hers Guide to the Art of Oral Sex & Seduction” seem to realize half way in that they’ve run out of useful material, so they offer redundant information, or restate the same facts, or say the same things again and again just to make a sentence or page longer, even if it runs on and says that same thing yet again. What is described in detail is done so concisely, without any redundancies.

They are not alone amongst sex guides however, in not offering the mechanics. The book “Sex Is Fun” by Kidder Kaper addresses similar topics, but with more puns and illustrations and less information. This doesn’t change the fact that more mechanical information would be preferable for, say, a newer edition of the book, but considering that other books are just as informative or less, it shouldn’t be counted as a detriment.

This book gets its reputation as the Sexual Bible for good reason, it covers almost every imaginable topic, but not in a manner everyone would like. The focus of this book is qualitative, focusing on information and theory, over quantitative, with emphasis on methods and application. This is not uncommon amongst sex books, so for those who read this and want more in depth information, try a specialized book instead.
    • Detailed
    • Specific
    • Varied topics
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This review was edited by
  • Pixel Pixel
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Comments
  • NarcissisticLust
    Thanks for the detailed review! I really enjoy reading books with my partner and this one seems like a fun one to choose. I'm surprised things are written in theory, interesting. Great review, thanks : )
  • Pixel
    Awesome review! You had me giggling several times during the proofreading process, which doesn't usually happen. (Also, is your title a Hitchhiker's Guide reference?)

    I do have a question, though. Is gay and lesbian sex and bisexuality touched on in this book at all, and if so, is it in a positive or negative way?

    Cheers!
    Pixel

  • sktb0007
    What an informative review, thank you very much!
  • Beck
    What a great review. Thanks for it!
  • alayamae
    Thanks for the review!
  • eroticmutt
    Very helpful review, this sounds like a great booK!
  • xGOLDx
    Thanks for all the info!
  • TransMarc
    Great review but I'd have the same question as Pixel (going to see their wall to check if you answered there!)
  • elli
    Thanks for the review!
  • Aydios
    Great review
  • animepanda89
    Great review!
  • Missmarc
    Thank you for the review.
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    Thank you!
  • vanilla&chocolate
    Thanks so much for this review!
  • x203
    Thank you
  • ViVix
    EU review!
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