Book review: Doing It!: Let’s Talk about Sex, by Hannah Whitton

Witton, Hannah. Doing It!: Let’s Talk about Sex. Sourcebooks Fire, 2018. $16.99. 352p. ISBN 978-1-4926-6503-8. Ages 14+. P10Q10

Only 24 states provide sex education in schools—and some of that is only abstinence-only teaching—which leaves young people on their own to learn about what might be the biggest influence in their lives. Witton has filled in this gap with her videos and blog posts before her book was published in Britain last year. A concentration on the myriad of topics—consent, virginity, contraception, rape, sex shaming, porn, etc.—is on healthy relationships and respect for people. Highly inclusive, the book covers both straight and LGBTQ+ relationships, allowing others to provide the information who might have more insight to it.

Verdict: Whitton’s funny, insightful book may be the best one on this subject for youth ever published. Her honest voice goes from formality and casualness to combine education with a conversation in a book designed to develop confidence in the reader. The topics she addresses can be difficult for some people, but the nonjudgmental approach escapes a sense of pushing guilt on the reader. Witton concludes: “I’m still learning, and the world is still learning, and that makes me really excited.” She addresses everything that young people wish could be included in the sex education curriculum.

May 2018 review by Nel Ward.

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