The Whole Lesbian Sex Book by Cleis Press Inc. - review by aliceinthehole

Sex for Dummies

The answers to pretty much anything you've ever wanted to know involving sex are contained in this easy-to-read instructional book. Diagrams and conversational writing accompany in-depth looks at everything from multiple orgasms, creating lasting relationships, depression and sex, and BDSM. A great book for anyone at any stage of their sexual journey.
Covers wide range of topics
Easy to read
Conversational tone
Expert author
In-depth information
Some diagrams aren't appealing
Several typos
Rating by reviewer:
extremely useful review

About author

Felice Newman is an inspirational author, sex educator and somatic coach. She's also a sex columnist and editor of such erotic books as Best Sex Writing 2006.

With The Whole Lesbian Sex Book, Felice brings her readers, of any orientation or gender identification, an all-inclusive, no-holds-barred sex encyclopedia. A marvelous resource for all things vanilla, kink, transgender, BDSM and more, Felice really shows off her expertise here, and in a manner that is very easy to read.

You can find out more about Felice and her works at her website, here.
    • Engaging
    • Expert author
    • Very personal approach

Content / Style / Audience

The Whole Lesbian Sex Book should've been titled The Sex Encyclopedia, with a Heavy Lesbian Influence. Straight folks, trans folks, gay folks, queer folks, alien folks alike will find this book incredibly welcoming. The diagrams are only of lesbians partaking in sexual activities, of course, however they're of many persuasions. There's fat lesbians, skinny lesbians, biker lesbians, nerdy lesbians, black, prego, pierced and tatted, super dyke lesbians, FTM folks, old lesbians... the list goes on and on. I've never seen such diversity in a book before! (Take that, Victoria's Secret... with your tall, long-haired models with their big tits, long legs and flat stomachs. Gag me with a spoon.)

In her incredibly sweet, intelligent, conversational tone, Felice guides us through a smorgasbord of sexual topics:

*Chapter 1. Welcome - Introduction and overview.

*Chapter 2. Desire and Fantasy - from how to discover yours to an overview of fetishes, to where to find things to fulfill your fetishes.

*Chapter 3. Anatomy and Sexual Response - from what happens in the body during arousal through orgasmic decline, to depression, disability, menopause, and herbal supplements to increase libido.

*Chapter 4. Orgasm - methods on how to achieve it, anorgasmic vs. preorgasmic, Viagra for women, getting your girlfriend off, multiple, tantric, extended, and ejaculatory orgasms.

*Chapter 5. The Road to Heaven Leads to You - a chapter on self-loving and healing. Felice goes into loving oneself, getting to know one's body, somatic healing for survivors of sexual trauma, gynecological health (diving deeper into gyno visits for female-bodied persons who don't identify with the female anatomy), and safe sex - everything you've EVER needed to know.

*Chapter 6. Masturbation - masturbation workshops (yes, they exist!), techniques, toys, erotica.

*Chapter 7. Communication and Finding Sex Partners - how to communicate without arguing, how to determine what you want in a partner, and find it, how to turn down an unwanted offer for sex, where to find partners, sex parties, and more!

*Chapter 8. Sex and Partnership - erotic intimacy and the deeper meaning of making love, overcoming libido issues, how to keep and/or reignite the spark.

*Chapter 9. Breast Play

*Chapter 10. Clitoral Play

*Chapter 11. Oral sex

*Chapter 12. Vaginal Penetration - Fingers, fists, strap-ons, toys, positions.

*Chapter 13. Anal Penetration - everything you've ever wanted to know!

*Chapter 14. Gender (Not Destiny) - what is gender? Sexual fluidity, sexual orientation, butch/femme notions

*Chapter 15. Play Nice (... Or Else) - BDSM. The appeal of pain play, master/sub relationships, creating a scene, toys, safe play, techniques, how to determine what you want out of a BDSM relationship or scene

Followed by 3 chapters entirely devoted to play parties/public sex, sex toys, and safer sex/gynecological health.

See what I mean? Literally everything but the god damn kitchen sink. And such an easy read! For sections you feel more expert in, you can skim them easily with the aid of subchapter headings. For chapters you'd like to learn more indepth information about, however, there's plenty to learn. Felice covers all the bases and then rakes the field. Twice.
    • Bdsm
    • Instructional / educational
    • Queer


With multiple headlines highlighted in bold, the chapters are divided into subchapters and therefore is very easy to skim through, if need be.

Though the diagrams were not appealing to this visual artist's senses, and were even off-putting throughout the book, it was good to have them. They certainly illustrated their point, and stimulated the visual center of learning.

An intense index proves very useful when looking for further information, as well as the section full of resources for anything from online support groups, sex shops and workshops. The only thing that bothered me here was that Eden Fantasys wasn't mentioned once; not in the section on online support communities or sex toys. What?! Eden is the BEST online sex toy resource. Pshaw.

The book is hefty, at 1' x 7", and therefore best not read while lying in bed. Your arms may get tired after a while!

The cover is anything but discreet, with the words The Whole Lesbian Sex Book in bold caps across the front. Anyone who sees it will think you're a freak, if they don't already know it. Insert giggle here.

The softcover book is made very well, and is certainly professional quality. The slick cover will protect its pages for a long time.
    • Diagrams / photos included
    • Large coffee table style
    • Not very discreet cover

Personal comments

I have to give this book 5 stars. If for nothing else, then for the simple fact that it covers literally everything you've ever wondered about sex and then some. No other sex guide on Eden covers even a fraction of the subjects dove into here, and certainly not in such detail.
This product was provided at a discounted price in exchange for an unbiased review. This review is in compliance with the FTC guidelines.
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  • ShinySuicide
    Thanks for the great review!
  • zizfaye
    Thanks for the review!
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