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A Round-Heeled Woman


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This is the best book about sex I have read in a long time' Lynne Truss, Sunday Times

About the Author

Born in 1933, Jane Juska taught English for more than forty years in high school, in college, and in prison. A Round-Heeled Woman, her first book, made her an overnight celebrity. She has since retired from teaching and lives in Berkeley, California.


Contrary to the lurid title (a "round-heeled woman" was once slang for a prostitute), Juska is a semiretired English teacher with refined tastes: Trollope novels , opera and museums. "Before I turn 67-next March," she wrote to the personals column of the New York Review of Books, "I would like to have a lot of sex with a man I like." While her adventures meeting these men frame her narrative, she's no geriatric Emmanuelle on a coast-to-coast fling, in spite of proclamations like "I adore penises." It's just that she was raised by repressed Midwesterners and had never managed-given her spiritual and physical bulk-a truly fulfilling love affair. Married to a loveless man, she then spent years in social retreat as a single mom. By the time she emerged from her chrysalis, she realized she'd never had a chance at pleasure, hence the ad and her comic adventures with the assortment of men culled from the daily mail. While it's no surprise that the best man comes last and that he's a hunk with a brilliant mind, this Harold-Maude liaison is hardly the most compelling chapter of this quirky little memoir. Surprisingly, it's Juska's accounts of visiting the Berg collection at the New York Public Library, or the stories of her writing classes at a prison, that remain in mind, long after her personals game has faded. Old women looking for sex may not seem a hot topic, but there's something universal in this woman's love affair with the written word. Agent, Ginger Barber. (On sale May 6) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Divorced and dateless for 30 years, Juska retired from teaching and spent five years in psychoanalysis. Then, feeling newly awakened at age 66, she placed a personals ad in the New York Review of Books seeking "a lot of sex with a man I like." Could this dowager out-Bridget Ms. Jones and live up to her favorite author, Trollope? You betcha. Juska spins an engaging memoir about her exploits, wryly comic and bittersweet, an Everywoman confronting the legendary meat market of romance. And an uncommonly literary Everywoman, dancing with similarly intellectual, if endlessly frustrating, partners. Alas, Juska's scholarly background could not prepare her for the seductive but mercurial behavior of the opposite sex. (Perhaps men are from the planet Janus.) A hopeful rather than happy ending, but, hell, "it's not the ninth inning until it is." Juska taught storytelling as well as literature, and her skill is evident as she interweaves her prior life history with her recent sexual adventures. This page-turner is highly recommended for collections in sociosexuality, aging, and contemporary autobiography. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 2/1/03.]-Martha Cornog, Philadelphia Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

"Real and raunchy!" Elle "A moving meditation on the libido of the pre-baby-boomer, post-menopause generation. In case that sounds forbiddingly high-minded, rest assured that it is also raunchy" Daily Telegraph "This is a memoir that sings with passion not just of the physical kind... A seamlessly wonderful read" Independent "Juska is honest, graphic, funny and moving. What she's got to say is a challenge to our own preconceptions about elderly sex...her story is nothing short of inspirational" Daily Mirror "Well-written as well as funny and brave" Spectator

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