If you're in the mood for some good, clean, science-y fun, you can't go wrong with Mary Roach. Unless, that is, you consider sex, decaying corpses, and the afterlife either unclean or un-science-y.
Stiff was my first Roach book, Spook the second, and Bonk, about the history of the scientific study of sex, ranks firmly in between the lesser Spook and the better Stiff. As is typical with Roach, she doesn't take herself seriously, volunteering herself and her husband for some of the sex studies, and she explains all of the different topics in amusing, non-technical language. Also typical, there are a lot of topics. If you become interested in one particular study or area of scrutiny, you'll have to continue your research elsewhere, because there isn't enough space to get too in-depth.
I found a draft of an email where I had taken notes, and since, like all of these reviews, I neither have the books with me, not remember many details, I'm just going to dump them here to finish:
p114: "Copulation," Leonardo [da Vinci] wrote, "is awkward and disgusting." He is said to have never bedded a woman.
p116: SUNY downstate archives w/ pictures of Dickinson vulvas. In Brooklyn.
p135: "nasal boner"
p138: ""Please give all the penises to me."
p141: she mentions The Rise of Viagra, by Meika Loe, which I read for Medical Inventions, etc.
p144: "slim, pernicious work of hyperbolic quackery" - great insult
150: Penis on Trial!
p170: Priapus, god of garden produce and anal rape
Band name: "Womb Fury" (In olden times, what "hysterical" women were diagnosed with. It had something to do with their wombs being angry that they hadn't produced children, or weren't getting enough attention. Treatment of symptoms included manual stimulation of the affected area.)
I Am Still Alive. Basically.
3 days ago