Want an extremely heterocentric, horrifically gender-stereotypical, infuriating book that advises readers to compliment their partner’s vulva by gently whispering “you have a beautiful flower”? Meet the newest volume from Sadie Allison (self-described as a “leading authority on human sexuality for over a decade”), a pocket-sized sex guide that winds me up into a flaming volcano of bitter exasperation.
The Mystery of the Undercover Clitoris could have been a great little book. The illustrations are nice, the author provides some really useful information and good clitoris-stroking techniques, and she continually stresses the importance of using lube. Even though some of her tips are asinine (such as spelling out “I love you” on someone’s clit with your fingertips), there is some quality information here. However, any shiny gem of potential is slathered in a thick, crusty gravy of misogynistic writing.
Within the first few pages, Sadie Allison explains why she wrote this book with the following:
…I found that many guys were truly willing to learn when I took the time to make discovery fun. That’s when it dawned on me that I had a knack for sexual guiding, without bruising their egos or causing embarrassment.
God forbid we bruise a man’s ego by trying to teach him how to give us pleasure. I’m also incensed by the suggestion that it is the responsibility of women to make learning to pleasure vulvas “fun” – because otherwise no guy gives a shit about touching a clitoris, right?
Behold a horrific sentence that floors me every time:
[In order to orgasm] …a woman’s mind must also be at ease, without worries about kids, deadlines, groceries, or whether she thinks you think she’s overweight.
Women just have so much to worry about – laundry, baby shower gifts, the calorie count of salad dressing, slicing down the patriarchy with a scythe forged from male tears, etc.
Occasionally, the author attempts to awkwardly connect with her target audience by trying to speak “dude” – by using weird sports and Star Wars references1. Far more distressing are her efforts to titillate and arouse the reader, with nauseating, adjective-ridden sentences such as the following:
The Vagina: Welcome to Intercourse Central – the female’s soft, flexible canal designed to embrace your eager, erect penis.
You’ll surely agree how magnificently your erect penis aligns with your lover’s excited vagina.
The vulva includes ALL of a woman’s external genitalia, while the vagina simply defines the canal where you spend your waking hours planning to plunge your penis.
I’ve realized that at the core of it all, the thing that pisses me off most to the point of pure, unabashed rage is that MANY TIMES throughout the book she promises you – the assumed heterosexual male reader – that if you follow the tips in this book, women will want to have more sex with you.
Let’s just stop for a moment and think about how fucked up that is.
Now, it may be true that often, people who feel like their partner(s) honestly put effort into and care about pleasuring them, are more likely to put effort into and care about pleasuring their partners in return. But in this book, the author is basically repeatedly telling male readers that they should expect (and consequently feel entitled to) more sex from their partners if they follow these clitoris-touching techniques.
Although The Mystery of the Undercover Clitoris is written to sound like it’s instructing the dude on being a better lover, this is not a book about her – it is about him. Rather than creating a real educational guide on how to pleasure a clitoris, the author spends a lot of time cushioning the reader’s ego and assuring him that he will receive pleasure in return. Everything always comes back to how the man will benefit.
Sadie Allison’s promises to men are: 1.) Women will give you more sex, and 2.) People will respect you and be impressed and/or jealous of your sexual prowess. Lest you think I am exaggerating, observe these quotes taken straight from the book:
- “The more satisfied your partner is, the more sex she’ll want” (pg 34)
- “You’ll soon find your virtuoso performance will inspire her to return all that pleasure with equal or greater gusto” (pg 2)
- “Your rewards will come. Again and again. And again.” (pg 79)
- “Clitoris happens to be the Greek word for “key”. Does that mean it’s the key to your lover’s orgasm? Or the key to you getting more sex? The correct answer is: why can’t it be both?” (pg 16)
- “If a guy speaks clitoris, the world is his oyster.” (pg 5)
- “It could be the beginning of an endless, upward spiral of passion, rewarding you in ways you can’t imagine.” (pg 105)
- “You’ll likely fulfill her desire to climax during intercourse – even simultaneously with you!”2 (pg 76)
- “The instant you fine-tune your touch to your lover’s clitoral wavelength, you may officially add the title of Sexgod [sic] to your name.” (pg 13)
- “That’s the passion that comes back to you many times over.” (pg 49)
- “You might bring her to orgasm with your labial artistry alone – which she will reward you for many times over” (pg 49)
- “It all comes down to pleasing your woman in the sack, so she’ll truly see you as her Lover with a capital L” (pg 41)
- “These touching techniques are guaranteed to bring your lover pure sexual ecstasy – while you get full credit, along with her undying passion-in-return” (pg 53)
Don’t do it for her – do it for YOU! Do it because you want to be a Total Stud. The man is king and his woman needs to view him as her Lover with a capital L! If he learns these things he will be a sex god and all women will want him and he can DO ANYTHING. THE WORLD WILL BE HIS OYSTER.
I didn’t remember the last Sadie Allison book I reviewed, Tickle His Pickle: Your Hands-On Guide To Penis Pleasing, being this bad… I recalled actually liking that book. I dug it out to check, and sure enough, despite being very heterocentric, the writing was nowhere near this misogynistic. Is it because according to our culture, women are supposed to want to pleasure their partners better – it just makes them HAPPY and they don’t need anyone to “make it fun” because that’s how women work?
Whatever the reason, this book very much closes out all past and future Sadie Allison books for me forever. I have zero desire to read anything else from her warped, sexist point of view, as any tidbits of useful information she might have to offer are ruined by a tidal wave of horrific writing. Want a real book to teach you how to pleasure someone with a clitoris that isn’t demeaning to women? Look elsewhere – The Mystery of the Undercover Clitoris is not your answer.
This book was sent to me courtesy of the publisher Tickle Kitty Press in exchange for an honest review.