I’ve known about asexuality for about two years (thanks, House, even though your depiction of asexuality was terrible). But I didn’t really learn about asexuality until this year. Most of my information comes from the internet, but I wanted to read some books about asexuality, too. It’s very difficult to find books with asexual protagonists (my library has zero fiction books with an asexual character as far as I can tell), so I’ve settled for nonfiction for now.
The Invisible Orientation by Julie Sondra Decker
Of the three books on Asexuality that I’ve read this year, this one was my favorite. It’s written in very clear, accessible language. It covers a variety of topics and issues. It’s a great starting point for anyone looking to learn more about asexuality.
The book covers Asexuality 101, asexual experiences (this section is very inclusive), myths of asexuality, a section specifically for asexual people (and any questioning people), and friends/family/acquaintances of asexual people. And I haven’t checked them all out yet, but the resources at the end of the book look great.
Asexuality: a brief introduction from the pages of AsexualityArchive.com
I didn’t enjoy this book as much as The Invisible Orientation, but it was still an interesting read. There are several mentions of the “opposite” gender, “either” genders and “both” genders which I found annoying. It also seems weirdly sex-shaming (with all the, “Aces don’t understand why someone would wear ‘sexy’ clothing. It just looks uncomfortable.”) I definitely don’t agree with all the opinions presented, but some of the information is still good.
Asexuality: a brief introduction covers Asexuality 101, common questions, possible signs of asexuality, myths and misconceptions, what asexuality isn’t, and the difference between celibacy, abstinence and asexuality (among other topics). I enjoyed the Personal Perspectives chapter at the end.
Understanding Asexuality by Anthony F Bogaert
Understanding Asexuality is the most scientific of the three books that I read, but it’s not a difficult read. The writing is very accessible though I found Bogaert’s use of exclamation points (and asking questions just so he could answer them) distracting. The book was also very repetitive by the end. I lost interested and just skimmed the last four chapters.
If you’re interested in the biology behind asexuality and how people are studying it, this is the book for you. I didn’t find it that interesting. There’s too much speculation for me.
The study of asexuality is relatively new, so there’s just not that much information about it. I hope that changes in the future though. I’d love to see more books written about asexuality and asexual people in the future.