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Book Review: When Someone You Love is Kinky

A few months ago on my trip to Los Angeles I was finally able to visit The Pleasure Chest, something I have been wanting to do for a long while. And of course while I was there I knew I had to buy a sexuality book to keep me company on the flight home. There were so many amazing books to choose from, but I ended up going with a book that I knew would be a staple for my BDSM library.

When Someone You Love is Kinky by Dossie Easton and Catherine A. Liszt was published by Greenery Press in 2000. And though it is not a newly published book, it is a solid and wonderful one to have in my collection as an educator and ambassador for kinky life.

I have read other books by Dossie Easton and Janet Hardy (this title was published using Hardy’s pen name) and absolutely loved them. I have reviewed The New Bottoming Book and The New Topping Book and am looking forward to reading the other books by this duo on my to-be-read shelf.

As the title indicates, this book was written for people who are not kinky in relationships with people who are. And while the book does talk a lot about romantic or long-term partners, the authors also address family like children or parents, friends, co-workers, and people in professional fields like doctors or counselors. I really appreciated the wide range of relationships this book emphasizes.

I also really liked the fact that the book never feels like it is talking down to its audience. The authors approach the topic with compassion and understanding and explain concepts thoroughly, but never oversimplify. The reciprocity and the fact that relationships are a two-way street is also emphasized in the book. The authors make it clear that it’s not just about the kinky person: all parties have a responsibility to work on themselves, learn, and grow to make their relationships better.

There are eleven chapters in the book along with a resources guide and glossary. While I felt the resources guide could use an update, the glossary of terms is excellent. Clear, concise, and a wonderful tool for the target audience.

Between the chapters are personal letters kinky people wrote to people in their lives, saying the things they have always wanted to say regarding coming out as kinky. There are letters to parents, significant others, and even an ex-boss. These letters give an emotional anchor to the book that I think a lot of people can relate to.

If you are looking for a resource targeted toward people who are unfamiliar with kink or BDSM, this is a great place to begin. Of course you will likely add resources as you go along. But this book has a clean layout, a friendly narrative voice, reliable information, and a positive philosophy without being overwhelming.

I’m definitely happy I now have this book in my BDSM library. My collection is all the stronger with this title included.


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