"Pleasure U," Carole Hart

Pros: Tons of sex of nearly every variety if you’re looking for that
Cons: Conflicting tones; utterly ridiculous situations
Rating: 2.5 out of 5

Review copy courtesy of Penguin Group.


Lila had her life planned out: she’d graduate from high school, marry her high-school sweetheart, Tad, take a year off, then go on to college. Instead, Tad slept with a stripper and dumped her (calling her sexually boring in the process), and now she’s decided to go to Babylona, the university for sex professionals. She sleeps with her student advisor, Ben, on her first day there, and then, despite her misgivings, settles in to participate in the wild classes (and even wilder extra-curricular activities).


If the set-up sounds ridiculous and silly—well, that’s because it is. You have to take it as humor in order to suspend disbelief at all; so many logistical objections come to mind while reading that there’s no other way to buy into it.

The only problem with this is that there are parts of the book that try to be earnest rather than humorous—such as the angstful attempt at a relationship between Lila and Ben. It’s tough to let go and say hey, this is ridiculous, but it’s fun, so who cares, when part of the story is still trying to engage you with semi-soulful character development and angst.

If you’ve ever had a dream of being the ‘nice girl’ who happens to have porn star looks, gets the great guy, and manages a fantastically posh career in a surprisingly erotic and non-seedy sex industry, well, this book is for you. If you can’t read that last sentence without bursting into laughter over how ridiculous the setup sounds… then you see the problem. It’s a great book for an exceedingly narrow audience, in my opinion. I can’t help thinking that without the romance, or at least tossing aside any pretense at drama and sticking with the humorous approach, the book would have been much more consistent and easier to swallow (ahem).

At any rate, if you want to read tons of wild and crazy sex scenes of all varieties and don’t care whether the setup makes any kind of logical sense, go for it. Otherwise… this probably isn’t the book for you.

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