Time for another Tonsil blog book giveaway. This one is a real jackpot — the first three responders will get a package of three new books written by friends o’ mine. You’re not competing for individual titles; winners will get all three. (You don’t want all three? Look, these aren’t lima beans I’m servin’ here. You’ll get three delicious books — and perhaps the pleasure of re-gifting one or two of them out to a wider, literate world.) See instructions below. To win, you must send an email, not leave a comment to this blog post.

First up: Jujitsu Rabbi and the Godless Blonde, a funny and smartly written young-woman-in-the-big-city memoir by Rebecca Dana.

It’s the story of how Rebecca moved to the big city, reached for all the brass rings, and after a time ran smack into her own hubris. Loveless and roofless, she answers a roommate ad and moves in with Cosmo, an Orthodox rabbi who’s also on the verge of a life change. This book has been featured on the “Today” show and everyhere-elsewhere, and look, here’s Rebecca talking about it to

Clearly Rebecca (a former star intern of the Style section, many moons ago) doesn’t need my help at all in the PR department, but two other writers very near and dear to me DO, and that’s why I’ve bundled their books with Rebecca’s, in hopes of just a tiny bit of SEO mojo. The next two books are self-published, which used to be a pejorative description, and now, well, who can say what the best way is to reach the most readers? It’s no longer about putting the horse before the cart. It’s about driving a car there instead.

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So, next up: A former editor of mine from Austin days, Anne Rodgers, with Dr. Maureen Whelihan, has come out with a landmark survey of the sexual history of everyday women. The book is called Kiss and Tell: Secrets of Sexual Desire from Women 15 to 97.

Culled from surveys of 1,300 of Dr. Whelihan’s patients in Florida, the women featured in these in-depth interviews (who’ve been granted pseudonymity) represent every decade, starting with teens, and on up through the 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s … all the way up the 90s.

What turned them on? How did they learn about sex? What have they figured out about it? What do they enjoy? What do they regret?

Here’s what novelist Sarah Bird says about Kiss and Tell, in a blurb for the book:

“Kiss and Tell does what no other book on the subject of sex has done; it sits you down at the kitchen table with real women of all ages as they tell you their stories — of their first times, their secret desires, what they wish their partners would do, or not do, or do again. …”

And here’s just some of what Tinsel author Hank Stuever had to say about it:

“As a journalist and writer obsessed by everyday American lifestyles, I’ve always wanted to know more about the two biggies you’re never supposed to ask about: money and sex. … [Kiss and Tell has] uncorked fascinating anecdotes from the epic, lifelong story of female sexual experiences. [It’s] a surprising, heartfelt and valuable book. …”

What I didn’t say in my blurb: Kiss and Tell is exactly the sort of book I always hoped to run into when I used to babysit in people’s houses as a teenager and do some lite snooping. What better endorsement is there than that?

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And last and so totally not least, we have Spike Gillespie’s The Maine Event, a travelogue/memoir of Spike and her partner Warren’s trip to Maine. This book is a delightful little madcap adventure.

But, Spike being Spike, it’s so much more than that. This is a book for people who seek the calm and the Zen in all situations and yet always find themselves needing to speak to a supervisor, if you know what I mean. One of the pleasures of knowing (and reading) Spike all these years is to follow her journey back and forth from hilarious hothead to Earth mother.

I loved The Maine Event weeks before I read it, when Spike launched a Kickstarter drive to fund the book. I wonder if that’s really the new publishing model? Pitch a book to us and if we’re dying to read it, we’ll pony up.

So, now you know. I of course urge you to seek out these books and spread the word. And BUY them. But, as an enticement, here’s how to win these three very different but excellent books absolutely FREE: E-mail me at hank [at] this website [dot] com. First three responders get the whole enchilada, mailed to you via the U.S. Postal Service. Go for it. UPDATE — 2/19/13, 6:45 p.m. EST: ALL GONE!


  1. Molly Gimmel on February 19, 2013 at 7:11 pm

    I’m always looking to discover new authors, I’d love to read these books. Thanks!

  2. Carol Van Valkenburg on February 19, 2013 at 7:30 pm

    Hey, did I make it?

  3. Carol Van Valkenburg on February 19, 2013 at 7:48 pm

    See how well I follow directions?

    I hope whoever won them enjoys them as much as I did the last two books you gave me: Tinsel and Off Ramp….

  4. Janessa Cobb on February 19, 2013 at 7:52 pm

    Love free books =)

  5. Anita on February 19, 2013 at 10:51 pm

    I want one.

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