Between the sheets: top 10 most provocative books out this month

The best books on sex, sexuality, and gender (re)released this February.

Love Illuminated: Exploring Life's Most Mystifying Subject (with the Help of 50,000 Strangers) (2/4/2014)
by Daniel Jones

As the editor of a column about love in the New York Times, Daniel Jones has been privy to the deepest personal revelations of tens of thousands of strangers. Deluged with stories of scheming cheaters, hopeless romantics, racy texts, and fierce devotion, he has spent much of the past decade wading through love's muck and majesty—and has taken plenty of notes along the way. In Love Illuminated, he uses his unique perspective to tease apart life's most mystifying subject. Drawing from the 50,000 tales of love that have crossed his desk, Jones traces the arc of human relationships through ten phases, starting with the pursuit, destiny, vulnerability, connection, and trust of new love, and then turning to the practicality, monotony, infidelity, loyalty, and wisdom of love matured. With empathy and wry humor, he takes readers on an enlightening journey through the highs, lows, and enduring unknowns of this universal experience that rattles the head and stirs the heart.

Partners In Passion: A Guide to Great Sex, Emotional Intimacy and Long-term Love (2/18/2014)
by Mark A. Michaels and Patricia Johnson

Happily married partners in passion themselves, award-winning authors Mark A. Michaels and Patricia Johnson provide readers with a fun, step-by-step manual to creating a lasting, loving and erotic relationship. Partners in Passion proposes alternative models of long-term connection, founded on mutuality, a collaborative mindset, empathy and transparency. It features interviews with long-term couples and includes an extensive resource guide that covers everything from health to erotica, with excellent advice from many of today’s leading sexuality and relationship educators.

Best Bondage Erotica 2014 (1/7/2014)
by Rachel Kramer Bussel (Editor)

This book features 21 hot bondage tales that titillate from the bedroom to the dungeon and beyond. Handpicked by best-selling erotica editor Bussel, these kinky stories show and tell exactly what it means to wield the special power of being in charge of someone else. These characters manipulate rope, handcuffs, leather straps, a St. Andrew's cross, a chair, and, in Raziel Moore's "My Own Device," a special contraption crafted just for bondage, with the ultimate aim of pleasing each partner. Here, bondage takes place behind secret doors, at sex parties, at the office, on a mountain hike, and, of course, at home.

Best Gay Romance 2014 (2/18/2014)
by R.D. Cochrane (Editor)

This book reminds us all of how love can begin: at the grocery store, the gym, the library or even online. Star editors Timothy J. Lambert and R. D. Cochrane bring us stories of real romance between real men. A meet-up at a marriage equality protest is the beginning of something real in Eric Gober’s “Strange Propositions.” Sometimes being a true friend is the best thing you can do for your lover, as in N. S. Beranek’s “There’s No Question It’s Love.” Skinny-dipping strangers heat up the water in James Booth’s “Falling.”

Best Lesbian Romance 2014 (2/18/2014)
by Radclyffe (Editor)

Falling in love opens us up to possibilities we never imagined, leaving us with a deeper sense of self and a greater appreciation for life. Whether you find yourself at the beginning of your journey or far down the road of love, you’ll discover Best Lesbian Romance 2014 has stories of satisfying intimacy and soaring desire. A blind date seems destined for disaster but turns out to be the start of something special in Jillian Boyd’s “Aussie Girl.” A grief-worn widow gets back in the saddle, for life and love, in “Second Chances,” by Jade Melisande. Shisuma’s “An Adventure” is a love song to marriage and how the fire of attraction can grow even stronger over the years. Award-winning editor Radclyffe and the rest of the best will guide you on an unforgettable, rosy-tinted adventure of endless possibility.

Best Erotic Romance 2014 (2/18/2014)
by Kristina Wright (Editor)

Desire, love and realism are the heartbeat of Kristina Wright’s Best Erotic Romance 2014. From first crushes to new lovers, to married couples who have withstood the tests of time and parenting, these are luscious, heartfelt tales layered with eroticism and emotion. A happily married woman dresses to thrill and discovers how fun it is to break the “Rules” in Emerald’s sizzling story. A devoted couple finds time for lovemaking while juggling the busy whirl of childcare in “The Shortest Day,” by Nikki Magennis. Walking the dog leads to sparks and a red-hot flame in Lucy Felthouse’s “Going It Alone.” This decidedly blissful and deeply romantic anthology is filled with couples in every stage of love and lust who simply can’t get enough of each other.

Kissing: A Field Guide
 (February 14, 2014)
By Violet Blue

Kissing is an art form and Violet Blue shows you every trick for the ultimate lip lock in this indispensable field guide, which includes a foreword by bestselling author William Cane. She helps you choose—and perfect—your own unforgettable kissing style. Learn how to time a kiss flawlessly, how to deliver (and receive) a first kiss, and how to ask for kisses with body language. If you’re tired of being a one-date wonder or want to turn up the heat with your honey, these tips and techniques guarantee confident canoodling. You’ll have all the advantages in the game of love as Violet divulges her secrets for a five-alarm kiss.

Sexy Ways to Play: A Guide to Sex Toys (2/1/2014)
by Emily Dubberley

This book presents all you ever wanted to know, but were too shy to ask, about bedroom toys. The range is wide, bewildering, and sometimes bizarre, but Emily Dubberley leads us through this exotic maze with the confidence of her vast experience - and some humor. After all, sex is far too important to be taken seriously, especially when discussing the finer details of using a "rabbit" or a "bingo"! Nevertheless, sex toys can have an important role in every relationship, and this pack is essential reading for couples everywhere.

Find Your Inner Sex Goddess: An Erotic Guide to Sexual Empowerment and Possibility (2/4/2014)
by Louise Weston

What makes a sex goddess? Attitude—with a few “man-handling” skills thrown in. With this erotic guide, you'll learn how to stop worrying, let go of inhibitions, and focus on the lovemaking itself. Tap into the full strength of your female power with advice on everything from boudoir wear, talking dirty, and the full strip to sexual skills, sensational orgasms, and way beyond. Top 10 and Top 20 lists cover foreplay tips, sex positions, and role-play fantasies, and sexy specially commissioned illustrations show it all.

Pop.Sex — Popular Sexuality: Popular Sexuality (2/3/2014)
by Angie Bowie

Pop.Sex is Angie Bowie's take on the history and madness of sexual motivation as the reason for humanity's survival and at what odds? Full of stories and research that bring times and a luminous cast of characters, heroes and villains to life. Angie Bowie's lifetime of research into popular sexuality is showcased in this compelling and Funny, hard to put down roller coaster of a book tumbling through the Sexuality of the Ages.

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