Martha Cornog reviewed Better Than I Ever Expected: Straight Talk About Sex After Sixty, along with other new books about sexuality and older women, in “The Go-Go Golden Libido” in Library Journal, February 1, 2006:
Our third senior sexpert, health writer Price focuses on a smaller number of women of the 1960s “love generation” who are still having happy and wonderful sex. Drawing on data from emailed questionnaires and telephone interviews, the author shares personal stories and a wealth of insightful information about having good sex; dating; staying sexy; coping with hormonal, physical, and medical problems (including vaginal atrophy); and keeping erotic warmth alive in a long-term arriage. Many of these women have been adventurous and continue to be—their stories are not for the monogamy-at-all-costs crowd. Yet this is the book’s strength: reassuring senior-aged women who feel abandoned by the numerous “coupled through life” books (and perhaps distanced from “vanilla” friends) that they are not freakish or alone. One quibble: it could’ve been more inclusive about safe(r) sex, though there’s an excellent reading list and even footnotes.
The Weekend Arts section of the New York Times, 1/13/06, featured a cover story titled “Post-Salad-Days Women Agree: They Want ‘What She’s Having'” by Dinitia Smith about books and movies that “echo the message that seasoned women can be sexually spicy.”
Better Than I Ever Expected was quoted twice:
Also arriving this month, from Seal Press, will be “Better Than I Expected: Straight Talk About Sex After Sixty,” by Joan Price, who spices the book up with her own experiences. (“I rub moisturizing lotion gently into Robert’s skin,” she writes. “I love seeing him standing naked before me.”)
By and large, the books carry an optimistic message — that despite age, menopause and wrinkles, women can continue to enjoy sex. “We are having hot, fabulous sex after sixty,” Ms. Price writes. “Society’s vew of aging women as sexless is wrong, wrong, wrong.” Her book includes advice on fitness and remedies for those who can’t achieve orgasm.
The article discusses Gail Sheehy’s Sex and the Seasoned Woman at length, references movies like “Something’s Gotta Give” and “Under the Sand,” and quotes Jane Juska (author of A Round-Heeled Woman and the upcoming Unaccompanied Women: Late-Life Adventures in Love, Sex and Real Estate), historian Linda Gordon, and NYU professor of psychiatry Leonore Tiefer. I’m happy to be in such company in this well-written, provocative article.
Here’s Peter King’s 12/31/05 review of Better Than I Ever Expected at Newsday.com:
Sex after 60: It’s good news
Guys, leave the room.
“Better Than I Ever Expected: Straight Talk About Sex After Sixty” (Seal Press, $15.95) by Joan Price is for women only. The book is part motivational memoir, part self-help guide and part sex manual in which Price asserts, “Society’s view of aging women as sexless is wrong, wrong, wrong.”
Price, 61, writes from experience. The book sprang from her own bout of “post-menopausal angst” when she thought her sex life was over. It wasn’t, although she writes that “changes after menopause make sexual enjoyment challenging.” Even so, Price says her sex life now is better than ever.
“Better Than I Ever Expected” gives older women advice on how to date and how to love. Price, who has written several books on health and fitness, also includes many tips on how exercise makes sex better.
Price recognizes the challenges of older sexuality but revels in the rewards. “We’re the Love Generation – we practically invented sex,” she writes. “We’re not about to shut the gates now!”
A Woman’s Touch Sexuality Resource Center has posted a review of Better Than I Ever Expected: Straight Talk about Sex after Sixty. I have their permission to reprint it here:
What really happens in the bedrooms of older adults? Are people over the age of 60 still having sex? According to author Joan Price, many women over 60 find themselves in the prime of their sexual lives. This book does a great job of addressing the needs, concerns, and realities of women over 60 and their partners.
Price does a great job of touching on physical, mental, and emotional aspects of sexuality. Expect information on physical fitness and health, dealing with the challenges that accompany postmenopause, how to keep your libido going strong, how to keep your sex life with a long-term partner interesting, what to do if you don’t have a partner or have lost your partner, what to do if you or your partner can’t have sex, and much more.
There are also helpful appendices including when and how a therapist can be helpful, a list of resources, and the interview questions given to the women who shared their experiences in the book.
Overall, this book is very comprehensive, filled with helpful real-life anecdotes, and a truly straightforward resource for those of us who are past 60 and still going strong.