Sex, by Heather Corinna

This is a great book. The full title is actually: s.e.x.: the all-you-need-to-know progressive sexuality guide to get you through high school and college. That’s a pretty long title, but long book titles seem to be trendy these days. The title also sets up a pretty big goal for itself. Corinna goes most of the way towards meeting her goal. This is particularly notable because it’s hard for many adults to write for teenagers in a respectful, supportive, and on-task way.

The content of s.e.x. is informative and covers a pretty wide range of information relatively well. As a reader, you at least get an idea of whether you’re interested in finding out more and generally where you can go if you do want more. The book has much the same feel as Corinna’s extensive website,, which is currently celebrating it’s 10th anniversary.

The similarity between Scarleteen and s.e.x. actually underlines the only potential criticism that I have about either the book or the website: they aren’t terrible fun or engaging beyond the inherent nature of the subject matter. This is not necessarily a bad thing. There are plenty of teenagers out there who just want information, and they don’t necessarily need or want it packaged in a fun or candy-coated wrapper. On the other hand, there are plenty of teenagers who don’t have the attention span to research or delve into a relatively informative (i.e., potentially dry) book or extensive website to find the piece of information they need. Rather, these teenagers want to browse through YouTube or and look at all the funny and sexy videos and are fine if they learn something on the side. Neither Corinna’s book nor her website will appeal to this group of teenagers.

So while Corinna’s s.e.x. isn’t for everyone, it can fulfill a fabulous need for many teenagers. And it is a great resource for parents to keep on the shelf at all times in case the teenagers in your house suddenly have a burning question about a particular sex-related topic. Hopefully it will keep them from simply googling “female ejaculation” because there are plenty of results from that search you probably wouldn’t want them delving into.

About Karen Rayne

Dr. Karen Rayne has been supporting parents and families since 2007 when she received her PhD in Educational Psychology. A specialist in child wellbeing, Dr. Rayne has spent much of her career supporting parents, teachers, and other adults who care for children and teenagers.


  1. […] books and websites that I think are worth of a whole-hearted endorsement.  One of those books is S.E.X: the all-you-need-to-know progressive sexuality guide to get you through high school and college and […]

  2. […] looking for some age-appropriate reading material for high school students about sex and sexuality, I recommended S.E.X. by Heather Corinna some time ago, and it’s still the best thing out there.  Oh, and it’s for all genders […]

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