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Bengta Boydstrom

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Achieving It All
by Bengta Boydstrom   

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Category: 

Humor

Publisher:  iUniverse ISBN-10:  0595095313 Type: 
Pages: 

265

Copyright:  Apr 1 2000
Fiction

Thirty-three year old Hazel Newman, sales rep for a Temp Firm, tries to find sexual satisfaction on the home front, while avoiding sexual harassment in the work place.

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It is spring, the most romantic time of the year. It is also nineteen seventy-nine. A year when pop music, glossy magazines, numerous movies and those probing pioneers Masters & Johnson were all urging women to go for it. Subject to this onslaught, shy, sensitive Hazel Newman becomes the Charlie Chaplin of the Sexual Revolution. And just as the Little Tramp was routinely trounced by his battle against industrialization, Hazel finds her all of her experiments with romance go rottenly wrong.

It doesn’t help that her husband is handsome, but obtuse, and that her first affair is with a local newscaster who is a complete cad, while her second is with a string-plucking bass player with fingers as rough as sandpaper. At work, she is harassed by her boss, Big Michelle Medway, the founder of Best Temp, who puts Hazel on a commission basis, rather than giving her an annual raise. The firm’s best client, Harry Glitten is an egotistical pervert who mauls Hazel every time she takes him to lunch. Every time he mauls her, however, he also gives Best Temp more business, forcing Hazel to choose between increased success and continued loss of dignity. Convinced that her husband is having an affair, Hazel also seeks romance. When her tryst partner also comments on her lack of response, she first buys a self-help book and then joins a Sexual Awareness Group, both of which lead to disaster before pointing her toward the empowerment ever woman deserves. Through humor, Achieving It All also tries to remind women of the dangers of sex as well as providing enough biological detail to help them to understand their anatomy more fully.

Achieving It All - It’s everything your mother never told you about romantic relationships.


Excerpt

A new study undertaken by a women’s magazine and the co-directors of the sex-counseling program at a major university…claimed that almost 70% of the women in their control group had rated not having an orgasm as: “Okay, it’s no big thing.” The co-directors said they “were delighted that new evidence indicated that the importance of orgasm to a woman’s sexual satisfaction had been grossly over rated.”


Hazel thought, did the women questioned for this study give honest answers? Did they know their own bodies and minds, or were they once again responding with what they thought the scientists wanted to hear? It was as if the ancient Greek deities, Zeus and Hera were arguing over which gender felt more sexual pleasure all over again. Asked to arbitrate, Tirosias, the only mortal to live on earth as both male and female, had said, “Women.” Enraged, Hera put out his eyes. And that, Hazel thought, is what the women in the new survey were doing. They were behaving like Hera, this time blinding themselves to their own capacity for sexual pleasure.



Professional Reviews

--Diane Morgan, her review appears on the NewBookReviews.com web site
I have to tell you. I read the book today and absolutely loved it. I am going to try to get the review up tonight, if not it will be tomorrow. Great work!

--Chia Chen, author of Among the 36 Strategies, Running Away is the Top One
Between the writings, I have been reading your book. I was laughing hysterically when I read the section where Hazel angrily stormed out of the fancy French restaurant and Glitten's briefcase fell open and a vibrator rolled out of his stack papers and the well-dressed waiter graciously used a napkin to pick up the vibrator. Your description made the whole scene so vivid that I felt I was watching a movie.

--L. L. Lee, author of Taxing Tallulah and The Sisters: Lost in Brooklyn
Hazel is a memorable character as are several others like O’Brien and Connie and Glitten. I laughed out loud several times as I read the book, which makes me wonder why you are marketing this novel as some sort of sex manual since most women of the nineties might laugh at Hazel’s sexual antics, but may not identify with them. Anyway, the book is a good read, no matter what your intentions were.


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