Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and…

Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex (2008)

by Mary Roach

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,533None2,377 (3.8)254
2008 (30) 2009 (13) 2010 (14) anatomy (18) audiobook (13) biology (113) ebook (15) history (37) history of science (12) humor (112) Kindle (17) library (17) non-fiction (468) own (14) physiology (22) popular science (39) psychology (29) read (37) read in 2008 (19) read in 2009 (20) read in 2011 (14) research (33) science (389) sex (340) sex research (17) sexuality (118) sociology (18) to-read (75) unread (26) wishlist (17)

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 254 mentions

English (150)  Dutch (1)  All languages (151)
Showing 1-5 of 150 (next | show all)
Entertainingly written, but not as good as her other books. ( )
  bke | Mar 30, 2014 |
I enjoy the dry humour of Bill Bryson and Lynne Truss, and the writing style of Mary Roach is similar. Even though I listen to Dan Savage podcasts there's always something new to learn about human sexy times (not to mention that of monkeys), though when it comes to the finer details (e.g. natural lubrication of the anal sphincter) I'm going to listen to Dan before Mary. Whether the clitoris is in fact a vestigial penis is still up for debate in other quarters, despite Mary's somewhat reluctant insistence that it is so. In short, I would read this book as entertainment. Though at times, some serious issues (in feminist world and in homosexual world) are given a light touch that I find almost disturbing, and I definitely had to skip over the section on penis modifications because I'm queasy. And I don't even have a penis. My phantom penis was in pain just reading about the things that go on in China.

This book makes much use of footnotes. Sometimes they fill half the page. This is part of the humour -- footnotes lend a pseudo-scientific flavour to a work designed to entertain, and they do achieve that. But footnotes are like parentheses -- whenever I read them I feel I've been taken out of the real story, and when they occur with such frequency it gets annoying, stopping mid-sentence before turning the page to read the footnotes. And these footnotes should rightly have been placed within the text, because you've really got to read them to get the most out of this book.

This is the first book by Mary Roach that I've come across, but now I'm fascinated by what she has to say about human cadavers. ( )
1 vote LynleyS | Feb 8, 2014 |
Fascinating and weird, and at times a bit uncomfortable to read, which makes for a great discussion...with people you're comfortable with! :D ( )
  kayceel | Feb 5, 2014 |
Mary Roach does it again. What a pleasure to read! I am a bit baffled by the comments by some people here, that Bonk was not as much fun as Stiff (which I've read and enjoyed) and Spook (which I have not read.) I found Bonk to be as much fun, if not more, and actually I thought the author's style actually matured, as the jokes and winks became more subtle than in Stiff, perhaps necessary to deal with a more delicate subject matter (As sad as it is, I think for most people the subject of sex is a more delicate one than cadavers!) Roach is a great reporter, and a fun observer who can astutely describe the subjects, the researchers, and the research being done (or being reported in earlier studies.) Her footnotes are extremely fun to read (and as a scientist, I am envious of fun-to-read footnotes!) and her language is, as always, fluent, free, and inspiring. All in all, I like Bonk better than Stiff, as I found not only the subject matter, but also the way it was developed and presented more fun and effective.

As a side note (my footnote envy, perhaps...): So that machine George Clooney's character built in "Burn After Reading" (Coen Brothers)... Has Mary Roach seen it (the film or the machine?) That whole part about men tinkering in their garages reminded me of the scene from the film (also, what I am reading in the Evolution of Useful Things, about how the man tinkering in his garage is the original inventor of the modern times) ( )
  bluepigeon | Dec 15, 2013 |
Another fun pop science/history book from Mary Roach. Great audiobook for a long, otherwise boring drive. ( )
  akswede | Oct 14, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 150 (next | show all)
Ms. Roach does, however, clutter “Bonk” with so many long, chatty footnotes that she underscores how spotty and disorganized her material is
Surprisingly fun & informative, best when enjoyed with friends/spouse/significant other

» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Mary Roachprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Burr, SandraNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
For Woody
First words
A man sits in a room, manipulating his kneecaps.
The first prize must go to the Deodorizing and Sound-Muffling Anal Pad. The patent's background material details the sad decline of the human anal sphincter muscle, whose gripping capacity fades as we age. The absorbing Layer is said to "trap the sound of a flatus, " as though one might later drive it to a less populated area and release it.
There are also inflatable, rather than malleable, penile implants. Here you don't bend the penis, you pump it up. The surgeon implants a small bladder of saline or air above the pubic bone. This gets pumped into the implant by means of a hollow, squeezable bulb implanted in the scrotum and attached to the prothesis by a plastic tube. Inflatables are more popular because--unlike a malleable implant--they enlarge the girth of a penis, as would happen in an unaided erection. To many men, it seems more natural--except, of course, for the scrotum-squeezing aspect of the event
This book is a tribute to the men and women who dared. Who, to this day, endure ignorance, closed minds, righteousness, and prudery. Their lives are not easy. But their cocktail parties are the best.
Cheese crumbs spread in front of a copulating pair of rats may distract the female, but not the male.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0393334791, Paperback)

“Rich in dexterous innuendo, laugh-out-loud humor and illuminating fact. It’s compulsively readable.” —Los Angeles Times Book Review

The best-selling author of Stiff turns her outrageous curiosity and insight on the most alluring scientific subject of all: sex.

16 illustrations

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:19:33 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Roach shows how and why sexual arousal and orgasm can be so hard to achieve and what science is doing to make the bedroom a more satisfying place.

» see all 5 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
8 avail.
1579 wanted
7 pay11 pay

Popular covers


Average: (3.8)
0.5 1
1 5
1.5 4
2 43
2.5 12
3 184
3.5 58
4 313
4.5 49
5 155


Two editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

See editions

W.W. Norton

Two editions of this book were published by W.W. Norton.

Editions: 0393064646, 0393334791

Canongate Books

Two editions of this book were published by Canongate Books.

Editions: 1847672264, 1847672361

Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

» Publisher information page

LibraryThing Early Reviewers Alumn

Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach was made available through LibraryThing Early Reviewers. Sign up to possibly get pre-publication copies of books.

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 89,473,154 books! | Top bar: Always visible