Sex is a Funny Word – 5 star review

Sex is a Funny Word

By Cory Silverberg & Fiona Smyth

This is a dense graphic novel aimed at preteens to help provide sexual education. I absolutely loved it, and think it is the most inclusive and appropriate sex-ed book that I have found to date! The people within the pages are multicolored, disabled, sexually fluid, and more. Diversity and acceptance ripples through in a way that does not create confusion but instead promotes inclusion. The LGBTQ+ friendly language is one of my favorite additions of this book. However, I will state that it isn’t flawless. The glossary at the back was extremely helpful, but I wish some of the gender identity terms were given a chapter to themselves. 

I really like that this book does not address religion at all. I have never seen a sex-ed book omit religious or marriage ties to sex, and I appreciate that the authors chose to do this. I think this eliminates shame and negative connotations that are often suffused in other sex-ed books. Not all families share the same religious beliefs and I think those conversations and opinions should be left up to the parent to discuss with their kids on a case by case. This book uses scientific language and a full spectrum of education regarding the topic of sex such as genitalia, gender identification, erections, masturbation, consent, safe touch, and more.

This book can be read alone by kids, but it is designed to open conversations between parent and child with the hopes to break down the awkward stigma of talking about sex. Each chapter ends with some open-ended questions for the parent and child to discuss. This is aimed at 8 to 10 year-olds, which I think is highly appropriate. Kids are very familiar with sexual ideas by this time and it’s best that they start having the language to describe their bodies and understand them prior to becoming the teenage group that is beginning sexual experimentation. I would also recommend this book to teens and adults! The information is beneficial to all ages and appropriate for such. 

Reviewed by Coco

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