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The Dangerous Joy of Dr. Sex and Other True Stories

3.68 of 5 stars 3.68  ·  rating details  ·  53 ratings  ·  15 reviews
Nonfiction is the new black comedy in this hilarious collection of award-winning literary essays written by the infamous Pagan Kennedy. In the title piece, Alex Comfort, author of The Joy of Sex, reinvents himself as a sex guru in California and hatches a plan to destroy monogamy forever. In the stories that follow, a retired chemist finds a way to turn a wasteland into pa ...more
Kindle Edition, 247 pages
Published (first published January 1st 2008)
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Heather
If I could describe this book in one phrase, it would be this: Touchingly candid. Whether writing about her own life or those of the odd and eccentric, Kennedy recounts her stories with loving detail and wonder. The people she writes about are truly people to ponder and marvel at. She deals with them all with a level of respect normally not afforded to these quirky trendsetters. Throughout their stories, she captures their brilliance, strength and mostly their humanness.

Among some of these unusu
...more
Carey
In this interesting collection of unexpected true stories Pagan Kennedy introduces us to some eccentric characters. From Alex Comfort, the middle aged mastermind of The Joy of Sex to Vermin Supreme, fringe candidate extraordinaire, the mix is wonderful and thought provoking.

Ms. Kennedy hooked me in right away with her introduction. She talks about being read Alice in Wonderland by her Grandmother and wanting to get through the looking glass herself. After an unsuccessful attempt she decides tha
...more
Snarky's
I was sent a copy of this from the author and I must say that I loved it with every ounce of my being. Pagan Kennedy has always been my sort of writer, even when she's writing about things that have no utility for me. I mean I don't really know or care about the inworkings of Bostonian hipster living, but I do like zines!

Anyway, the title story about the titular Dr. Alex Comfort (best know for The Joy of Sex) is fantastic. He was far shadier, cheekier and crazier than I assumed and that's always
...more
David
The third book in my 50 in 2009 pastime. This book had a really good introduction that talked about the somewhat hard to pin down genre of creative non-fiction (also called literary non-fiction). It is a shame that she understands the beauty and possibility of this approach to writing so well without the matched ability to write within it. The first, and title, essay was brilliant. Alex Comfort was definitely a weird character. However, the rest of the essays were only fair. They were something ...more
Hazel
a series of those profiles you read in magazines about amazing people that you always remember midst conversation but can never quite remember the details. "Like, yeah there's the lady scientist in africa and she's totally doing something really cool to help grind grain for under 20 bucks. And she won some award..no I don't remember what it was she invented..."
Pagan Kennedy is a very entertaining, insightful author.
Darlene
I've been a fan of Kennedy since I first read her book 'Zine. Many of the essays in this book were previously published, but they were all new to me. Many of the essays were on scientific topics, but focused on the people involved and not the scientific aspects. My only complaint about some of the essays is that they could have been longer, providing more detail.
Lisa
These profiles on serious scientists and wacky inventors make for a fun, fast read. It's obvious that Kennedy is delighted by these characters, whether they are bringng food to starving villages or treating depression with nine-volt batteries.
Jennifer
This book is a perfect read for anybody from this area who is familiar with the local academic institutions, but is also great for anyone interested in how the genius mind works. Short stories about fascinating people.
Kathleen
great fascinating mini true life stories of many geniuses of current day america mostly scientific or eccentric stories
Polly
I *loved* the Alex Comfort piece. The rest was good stuff but just paled after the first part.
Jeremy
A great collection of true stories about real people. Or it that the other way around?
Geoff Wyss
Very uneven, but the title essay is worth it if you can get the book secondhand.
E.smith
Fascinating people, excellent writer. I'm looking forward to reading her fiction next.
Joanne Kiley
Fascinating perspective on real tales.
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Pagan Kennedy, who took her first writing workshop at The Writer's Center (see profile in the winter Carousel), is the author of ten books in a variety of genres - from cultural history to biography to the novel. A regular contributor to the Boston Globe, she has published articles in dozens of magazines and newspapers, including several sections of The New York Times. A biography titled Black Liv ...more
More about Pagan Kennedy...
The Exes Confessions of a Memory Eater The First Man-Made Man: The Story of Two Sex Changes, One Love Affair, and a Twentieth-Century Medical Revolution Spinsters Stripping + Other Stories

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