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As a little-understood sexual orientation, asexuality may seem inscrutable to non-asexuals and overwhelmingly nuanced to people wondering how or whether to place themselves along the asexual spectrum. Julie Sondra Decker's book patiently and thoroughly covers a vast range of those nuances. She's extremely careful and precise in her language, inclusive and conscientious. She doesn't descend into sarcasm or irritation, even when addressing some of the most tone-deaf FAQs lobbed at out and activist asexuals.
I identify in the asexual spectrum, and after frequenting online ace forums and doing some reading, I was still confused (and sometimes alienated). This book provided a lot of clarity, teasing out all kinds of variations on the asexual orientation and giving me much more confidence about my choice of "label." Listening to it was a validating experience. As others have mentioned, it's repetitive (which actually helped hammer home some of the ideas in my mind): definitely view each section as a long article designed to be read by itself.
Decker's writing style doesn't lend itself particularly well to the audiobook format, apparently featuring lots of slashes (e.g., "and/or," which is read aloud as "and slash or"), tables and lists. Part Six, Additional Resources, is a heroic and sadly unlistenable reading of dozens of long URLs. The resource section would have been better served by a single simple URL that audiobook listeners could go for the rest of the links. It's a minor quibble, but if the author is looking at reviews: Julie, any chance you could post a links page like that?
Nevertheless, Reay Kaplan's narration is clear, well-paced and easy to listen to, so hats off, especially for soldiering on through Part Six! I'm so glad to have found this subject covered so excellently.
9 of 9 people found this review helpful
The first half of the book was really interesting and very eye opening. The second half was a lot of rehashing of "don't be insensitive". Also, I don't think anyone edited this for reading as the narrator spent the last 30 minutes reading a references section INCLUDING EVERY URL IN DETAIL (also, who puts YouTube and Google Doc links in a printed book?). Narrator was a bit monotone, but I don't know how much more inflection you can give to a book like this. Anyway, if you're looking for a good overview, listen to the first half of this book, definitely don't listen to the last 30 minutes.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Very whiny and bee-in-a-bonnet approach to explaining asexuality. Perhaps it could be informative to some though she spends too much time moaning about how cruel the world is. A less emotionally laden approach would have been better.
I wanted to try and learn about Asexuality. I've listened to half of the book so far and it is so difficult to listen too and to understand what is being said. This book essentially preaches about how hard it can be to be Asexuality in our "terrible" society. I wanted to learn about it