Really Nice Book Reviews: Asking, Teaching & Sex Researching

Here are some audio books I’ve thoroughly enjoyed listening to on Audible.

bonk

Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach

Packed with stories from the early days of established sex research through modern laboratory adventures, Bonk keeps things moving at a well-lubricated clip.

I won’t give away too much, but if you want to find out exactly where a pig’s clitoris is located, or if you’re dying to find out if renowned sex researcher Alfred Kinsey really did insert a toothbrush into his urethra (bristles first), Bonk is the book for you.

natty

The Natty Professor: A Master Class on Mentoring, Motivating, and Making It Work! by Tim Gunn

My sister used to watch Project Runway religiously, so most of my PR viewing has occurred by her side. I may have seen as many as six complete episodes over the years — not for lack of appreciation, but more lack of the ability to sit still amidst distraction for any period of time. Anyway, watching Tim Gunn keep it real on PR was always the best thing about the show. He was honest, helpful, sensitive and kind. He didn’t kiss anyone’s ass, and when he gave criticism it was always with the best intentions. He wanted the designers to learn, and he knew he had to be honest with them if this was going to happen.

In this book, Tim explains why he takes the approach he takes. He talks about different teachers he’s known over the years, about teaching techniques that work best and about the ones that leave room for improvement. He discusses his own journey with candor and humor, and I just can’t help but love the guy.

I’m not a classroom teacher, but I write online massage therapy courses and I volunteer with a teen horror fiction writing club. I learned a lot from this book that I can easily apply in these settings. Tim’s tips on providing honest, kind feedback are top notch!

palmer

The Art of Asking or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let People Help by Amanda Palmer

I wrote a longer review of this audio book for The Young Thumbs, but I’ll highlight some key points here, too.

Amanda (best known for her music, her time in the Dresden Dolls, her marriage to author Neil Gaiman, and her hugely successful crowdfunding campaign with which she produced an album) talks about fear, connection, honesty, vulnerability, art, music, death, illness, depression, meanies, love and life. Her words are accessible and brought me to tears more than once. But you know what makes this audio book version even more kickass?

The narration and music.

To hear Amanda reading her own words is a pleasure, and the songs dispersed throughout her narration are perfectly chosen and span her career. If you sign up for Audible for 30 days just to get your free audio book, make it The Art of Asking.

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