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Open: Love, Sex, and Life in an Open Marriageby Jenny Block
Synopses & Reviews
"In this memoir of her open marriage, Block recounts how she leapt off the 'Disney monorail of monogamous marriage' to pursue her own version of 'happily ever after.' The author chronicles her growing awareness of the 'social conditioning' that, according to her, defines marriage as the exclusive province of sex and intimacy. She writes movingly of how her perfect marriage unraveled due to her husband's low libido and how she and her husband negotiated a nonmonogamous partnership that saved their marriage. While Block is unstintingly honest in her depictions of an open marriage's sexual and emotional entanglements — the author and her husband share, swap and pursue other partners — she is not entirely convincing when she asserts that she, her husband and her committed girlfriend have the 'perfect' arrangement. Block mentions troubling imbalances in passing while staunchly insisting, 'We have it all... he is my rock and she is my sky.' Readers are likely to be challenged and provoked by this book's insights into the surprising fluidities in fidelity and sexuality, but might find its repetitive, slightly glib delivery better suited for a magazine article than a book-length manifesto. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Jenny Block is your average girl next door, a suburban wife and mother for whom married life never felt quite right. She operates from the assumption that most couples who are curious about or engaged in open marriages are in fact more like her—normal people who question whether monogamy is right for them; good people who love their spouses but want variation; capable parents who are not deviant just because they choose to be honest about their desires.
In Open, Block paints a down to earth picture of how an open marriage can work, and specifically why it works for her and her husband. In dissecting other peoples strong reactions to her choice, she explores the question of why cheating is more socially acceptable than open marriage. In part, she concludes, the lack of models for successful functional open marriages is such that the general public is not yet equipped to handle treating it as anything other than abnormal.
Open challenges our notions of what traditional marriage looks like, and presents one womans journey down an uncertain path that ultimately proves that open marriage is a viable option, and one thats in fact better for some couples than conventional marriage.
Block paints a down-to-earth picture of how an open marriage can work, and specifically why it works for her and her husband. "Open" challenges the notions of what traditional marriage looks like, and presents one woman's journey down a different path.
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