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Live Nude Elf

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3.88  ·  Rating details ·  218 Ratings  ·  39 Reviews
Live Nude Elf chronicles Reverend Jen's two-year stint as sex columnist for nerve.com; she details her “sexperiments,” ranging from harrowing (working as a live nude girl at “Wiggles”) to embarrassing (fellatio school) to transcendent (reaching a mystical state through tantric sex). Along the way there is transvestitism, female ejaculation, opium smoking, and heartbreak.

In
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Paperback, 256 pages
Published May 1st 2009 by Soft Skull Press (first published 2008)
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Audacia Ray
Funny, personable, and self-deprecating. This book is sort of the opposite of porn - I found myself wanting to fast forward through the sex to get to more of the plot.

I read Jen's "I Did It For Science" column at Nerve, so it took me a while to get to her book, because I thought it would just be all her columns put together in a book. Instead, she did a lot of writing and work to make the book a cohesive story, not just a collection of essays.

If you fetishize the East Village of old, it's a goo
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Jim
Dec 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
If one were to oversimplify matters, one would call this book a collection of essays that Reverend Jen, reigning queen of the avant-garde performance scene on New York's Lower East Side, patron saint of the uncool, wrote over two years for Nerve.com, the literary sex website. But it's much much more than that. The name of the column she took over is "I did it for science." The premise of the column is that each outing had to be a new kind of "sexperiment". Not exactly an assignment for shrinking ...more
Marsha
Reverend Jen (who became ordained by mail order from the Universal Life Church, a church that will ordain anyone) shares her unorthodox views on art and sex. She decided to explore her sexuality and threw herself into it with unbridled enthusiasm. She slept with older men, younger men, foreign men; she pretended to BE a man; she went to balloon fetish parties… Yeah, I don’t get that one either.

Clearly off kilter but equally committed to enjoying herself and exploring her options, Reverend Jen s
...more
Erin Lyndal
May 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Aside from this book being cackle-diabolically hilarious and endlessly entertaining, there are other awesome things. Here are a few other things I loved:

-All the stories about art scene types, especially performance artists (like the guy whose performance art was to pour baking soda and vinegar in his Speedo and let it foam up)
-How Rev Jen manages to compare almost everything to Lord of the Rings
-Reading about all the awesome people in her life and how supportive and accepting they seem
-There's
...more
Vanessa
Aug 06, 2012 rated it liked it
found this on the book swap shelf at my condo pool. very raunchy, and very funny. think Sex and the City, only X rated. I couldn't stop thinking about the author's mother when reading this tho, yikes! like, that poor woman, does she know what a slut her daughter is? also, who puts this kind of book on a community book swap shelf??
Sheri LaVigne
Nov 01, 2009 rated it really liked it
I adore Rev. Jen, and this collection of her sexperiments was fanfuckingtabulous.
Jennifer
Dec 20, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Another Bravura Performance from Rev Jen, really top notch!
Carol
Aug 16, 2012 rated it liked it
Recommended to me by a friend who said it sounded like Carrollton, GA in a book. I think that was more or less accurate.
Amanda
Jan 19, 2010 rated it really liked it
Hilarious and enlightening memoir of a woman exploring her sexuality. She also wears elf ears and is a sex columnist in New York...
Jennifer
Jun 17, 2009 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: humor mixed with raunchiness
Reverend Jen certainly does wear her elf ears all over (she had them on at her signing at BEA this year).

Rev. Jen reflects on her life as a nerve.com sex columnist, artist, and inhabitant of LES before it became trendy (if that ever actually happened). Overtly sexual with trysts with men, women, and groups of men & women she delves into the truth she tried to pursue for her audience while trying to carve herself a niche in her own life. She succeeds in finding and losing love like most of u
...more
Autumn
Jan 06, 2014 rated it liked it
This was fun. A one-night read. 3.5

But it was confusing. It shouldn't have been, but it was. I think it's just me. Maybe the chapters were written out of order, but I didn't totally understand how the Rev Jen was squeamish about nudity in one chapter, but had dove into a balloon with nothing but black electrical tape on her nipples a few chapters before - in front of a full fetish party audience. Or how she doesn't feel comfortable holding a key party, but engages in several 3-or-more-somes thro
...more
J.C.
Oct 27, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
3 1/2 stars.

Part autobiography, part collected essays from her column at nerve.com. The autobiography part consists of how she got the job at nerve in the first place and how she ends up leaving. Most of the middle appears to be her essays without much more clarification on the subjects.

This book and subject matter is not for everyone, but I loved it, thought it was great, but I love stories about people diving in head first to new experiences (because I never ever do that), even ludicrous soun
...more
Mary
Jun 30, 2008 rated it it was amazing
From the book-

" For a lot of people, parades offer an opportunity to revel in a celebratory atmosphere, to be with loved ones, eat fried foods and wear colorful costumes. For me parades offer a unique challenge: What is the most masochistic, obtuse and unwieldy costume I can create, which will prevent me from enjoying myself in any manner whatsoever? And how can I make said costume so unattractive as to prevent any member of the opposite sex from speaking to me?

The Sea Monkey costume fulfilled a
...more
Autumn
Jul 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
Rev Jen never disappoints. Though this book is more lighthearted and playful than Elf Girl, it has its share of solemn points that add an emotional subplot to the experiments in masturbation and anal sex. Admittedly, some parts of the book dragged on and made me skim and wonder when the next chapter would come, something that was disappointing given how profound I found her Elf Girl. Like all of her writing though, Live Nude Elf is exceedingly heartfelt and sincere. That being said, if you're co ...more
Elaine Meszaros
Dec 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
Not a book for this with rigid morals or no sense of humor, Reverend Jen covers her year as a sex writer for Nerve magazine. While most of her experiments are scary/gross/dangerous they also have a tinge of quirky dorkiness that makes her lovable... in a deranged sort of way. In one experiment, Jen and friends try to become groupies:

"We rushed to the foot of the stage to get a better look and were instantaneously swept up in the madness. Legions of dudes banged their heads, genuflecting with dev
...more
Jaimie
Feb 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
This charming, witty, ridiculous, inappropriate, and laughter-inducing memoir is surprisingly heartwarming. As we follow Reverend Jen along on her sexperiments for Nerve.com we see her find and lose love of varying degrees on a journey that is ultimately about self-discovery. Rev. Jen writes with an honest and simple voice that is sure to charm its way into the hearts of even the world's biggest prudes.
Sarah
Jul 02, 2009 rated it really liked it
Reverend Jen’s writing reminds me of some of the cheekier columnists from Creative Loafing. You can’t help but chuckle when you read their work, even when it is border line disturbing. She pushes the boundaries of sexual exploration, allowing readers to expose themselves to experiences that I, for one, could never bring myself to partake in. Written from the wrong perspective, this could have been a creepy memoir, but Reverend Jen managed to keep it lighthearted and amusing.
Blake
Jan 04, 2011 rated it liked it
An entertaining, if not terribly insightful read chronicling her own life experiences as a gleefully debauched sex columnist. I felt it lacked cohesion between the segments, aside from a linear passage of time, and the autobiographical aspects of the book ended up being absorbed by a detail focus that ends up making her personal memoirs read like they're just another column.
Jenny Gonzalez- Blitz
Nov 22, 2010 rated it liked it
Recommended to Jenny by: bought at release party
While I've gotten to the point where I cringe at yet another person's memoirs of their sex work/exploits/fetishes, Rev. Jen's humorous approach to popular culture and lifestyles keeps this fresh and entertaining.The chapter where she and her friends attempt to dress themselves up as over the top "MILFs" was one of my favorites.
Clifford
Jan 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I love Reverend Jen. Let me just get that out of the way first. What a talented artist and writer. This book was enjoyable not simply because it was about sex, but just having a unique and hilarious, but very honest perspective on such a taboo subject. Perfect. On to her next book.
Malia
Jun 15, 2009 rated it really liked it
This book was sometimes dirty and often graphic but also really funny and I admire her honesty and...wow. I'm kind of in shock that she doesn't have syphillis or something but yay condoms! This was a good and fun read and I would recommend it to anyone who isn't easily offended.
Jo
Jul 06, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Reverend Jen, a sex columnist, embarks on a series of 'sexperiments' ranging from being a nude house cleaner to the Sex Toy Olympics. It's certainly an eye opener and I wouldn't recommend this to anybody who wasn't open minded.
David
May 21, 2010 rated it liked it
This was a fun fluff read if you enjoy x-rated experimentation. Easy to read a chapter here and there and not feel compelled to have it be "the book" you are reading; felt like the collection of articles from which it was derived.
Danimal
Jan 01, 2011 rated it liked it
Jovial writing about the author's sexual hijinx. One chapter even pretty hot.
Becca
May 08, 2013 rated it did not like it
Strange. This woman had ha an interesting life, to say the least.
Norman
Oct 17, 2009 rated it really liked it
Good, fast, goofy, fun read. If you have any knowledge of the East Village and environs, it's particularly fun due to the fact that many of the anecdotes take place there.
Michelle Hoogterp
May 11, 2010 rated it really liked it
Fabulous! This was thoroughly enjoyable. The writing style was solid and entertaining and the people in her book really came to life for me.
Jim
Aug 21, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sensual
Kind of scary, did I say kind of? I meant scary diary of an adventurous lass trying out various jobs that require nudity and more. Makes ya wonder why people do it.
Kristy
Mar 15, 2010 rated it really liked it
Amazingly interesting and entertaining. Rev. Jen is a more hardcore version of Carrie Bradshaw.
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Reverend Jen got her B.F.A. in painting from the School of Visual Arts in NYC in 1990 and has since experienced no financial success whatsoever. She is a performer, painter, playwright, columnist, ASS Magazine founder, Troll Museum curator and Patron Saint of the Uncool. For 12 years she hosted the Anti-Slam, a weekly open mike on Manhattans Lower East Side. She has performed all over the world at ...more
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“Love is like the human appendix. You take it for granted while it's there, but when it's suddenly gone you're forced to endure horrible pain that can only be alleviated through drugs.” 21 likes
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