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Summary

In Letters of Note: Sex, Shaun Usher collects together some of the most noteworthy missives ever written on the subject, from euphemism-laden, flirtatious exchanges and desire-driven expressions of passion to sincere and thoughtful meditations on the meaning of sex. 

Includes letters by John Cheever, Sigmund Freud, Dorothy Day, James Joyce, Margaret Mead, Henry Miller, Anaïs Nin, Mae West and many others. 

©2021 Shaun Usher (P)2021 Canongate Books Ltd

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Insightful and highly humorous

Wonderfully insightful and humorous addition to the series.

I read the first two in the series when they first came out, beautiful hardback versions with copies of the original letters and transcripts, the backstories included - coffee table books and a series that made me feel included in secret histories.

This series has now expanded to include a wealth of more specialised areas, from dogs to space, and here, the Adult Only entry - Sex.

Now I listened to this edition, and while I loved the voices and the letters and hearing them read out, it's a very 'visual' read so I did miss seeing the actual letters and handwriting and feeling more connected to the stories and people. The Audible readers are excellent, and it was well-produced and highly engaging, but if you want to SEE these letter it does feel lacking, especially as it's only a few hours long.

The letters themselves are superb. Some very serious, some offering advice, some frank, some revolutionary in their outlook and some tea-spitting-out hilarious. A mixture of more and less well-known names, with the background to each included as much as necessary to understand the context.

It's one I'll want to listen to again, definitely, and write down some names and stories to look into in more detail.

Adult content. For lovers (pun intended) of social history and letter writing and.... adult themes.

With thanks to Nudge Books for providing a sample Audible copy.