It’s a lovely little piece without the usual naysaying that so many journalists feel is necessary for “balance,” and there are several other asexual voices mixed in so it isn’t entirely a piece about me or my book. I’m quite pleased with it. Please read!
Decker, Julie Sondra. The Invisible Orientation: An Introduction to Asexuality. Carrel: Skyhorse. 2014. 240p. illus. notes. bibliog. ISBN 9781631440021. $34.95; ebk. ISBN 9781631440175. PSYCH
This is the first substantial book for the nonprofessional to emerge from the small but growing community of individuals who identify themselves as “asexual”—i.e., not sexually attracted to anyone; a portion of the population quoted as being approximately one in 100 people. Decker (contributor, Huffington Post; Salon), who writes in the introduction about her own asexuality, emphasizes that this is an orientation that has to do with feelings, not actions. The author stresses fluidity and inclusiveness: asexuality may change over time; some asexual people enjoy romantic relationships while others have no interest; libido may be high or low; and some are happy in partnered relationships while others enjoy the single life. The language and concepts are clearly modeled on those of the LGBTQ community, with an emphasis on asexuality being a healthy orientation, rather than the result of a mental or physical illness. The final chapter addresses friends and family members of asexual people.
This title is an important resource for readers of any age who are struggling to understand their sexual orientation, or those who would like to better understand asexuality.—Mary Ann Hughes, Shelton, WA
I’ll link it to their site once it’s posted. This is great for me and my publisher!
Kendra Holliday of The Beautiful Kind has posted a sensitive and personalized review and reflection of my book The Invisible Orientation. I especially love her discussion of diversity within the community, and how she seemed excited about the new terminology, not overwhelmed by it.
My biggest takeaway reading this book is that we shouldn’t make assumptions about anyone’s orientation. Be understanding and appreciate diversity. If you find out something you weren’t expecting, don’t blurt out something stupid and insensitive. Instead, nod and process.
Marieke of DiversifYA was kind enough to accept a guest post from me in honor of my book’s publication. I wrote a short essay discussing the importance of inclusive literature—including for asexual people—and spotlighted my experience of never finding myself in a book.
Sciatrix reviewed my book for The Asexual Agenda, arguably the most popular asexual-themed 201-and-up blog out there. Several of The Asexual Agenda‘s contributors have quotes in my book and were involved in helping me prepare the content of the book.
Overall, this is an excellent resource and introduction to asexuality. I’m really excited about seeing it used in the future, and I would recommend it to anyone who finds they want to introduce people to asexuality without having to personally do 101 for them.
Asexual community superstar, early reader and contributor, and awesome blogger Queenie has laid down a really comprehensive, mostly glowing, and occasionally critical review for me at Concept Awesome.
Overall, this book is excellent. It is pretty much everything you could want from a 101 asexuality book. It’s easy to read, it’s well-organized, it has so much information, and it would be equally appropriate to hand to your professor, your partner, your parent, and your questioning best friend.
This is a long overdue book, offering the general purpose introduction to the subject which has heretofore been lacking. It is an essential addition to any academic reading list that encompasses asexuality and should be required reading for any therapists with an interest in sexuality. It provides a sense of what it is like to be asexual that can sometimes be missing from academic work and engages with the literature while nonetheless refusing to be constrained by it. It is also immensely readable, providing an authoritative overview that sign posts the reader who is keen to explore further. I can’t recommend The Invisible Orientation highly enough and hope it has a wide readership.
My book The Invisible Orientation has been featured in TIME online with a six-hundred-word excerpt. They titled the article “How to Tell if You Are Asexual” and showed a bit of my intro and a bit of my section addressing asexual people on how to decide if it’s the label for them.
As of this writing, the feature contains a couple of inaccuracies.
 The article’s introduction claims that “[Decker] explains that asexual people can become sexual later in life, and that doesn’t mean they were not asexual before. Similarly, sexual people can become asexual,” and this is misleading. I discuss both sexual fluidity and label experimentation in my book, but it is part of a more nuanced discussion; I do not say “asexual people sometimes ‘become sexual’ later” or vice versa, and I think including it in this introduction contributes to the damaging perception that asexuality is just a phase. For most people, sexual orientation is a lifelong piece of identity, and the invalidation asexual people experience at the hands of the “you’ll grow out of it” myth makes this at best inaccurate.
 As for “Decker has written for the Huffington Post, The Daily Beast and Salon”–That’s incorrect. I have been interviewed in all of those publications but have never written for them.