John Heidenry, a former editor at Penthouse Forum, has lived on the frontlines of the sexual revolution and knows whereof he writes in What Wild Ecstasy: The Rise and Fall of the Sexual Revolution. Despite its bodice-ripper title, the book is a serious look at modern sexual mores and issues. Heidenry is unabashedly pro-sex, but responsibly so. As he chronicles the coming of age of sexology, the growth of pop-culture pornography in Screw magazine or the film “Deep Throat,” and the legal battles fought by gays and lesbians, he is as forthcoming about the idiocies his subjects often fall into as he is about their heroics. He gives equally scathing treatment to people he views as crass opportunists (the porn-star John Holmes, for example) and anti-sex moralists on the right. Heidenry is particularly sympathetic toward those who occupy the margins of mainstream sexuality – the bisexuals, transsexuals, and homosexuals, the prostitutes and pornographers. In these cases, he focuses on shared qualities: a need for love, for pleasure, for intimacy. What Wild Ecstasy is a frank, humane, and open-minded discussion of a subject that many people still find it difficult to talk about. Readers who approach Heidenry’s book in the same spirit in which he writes will find, perhaps to their surprise, that underneath all the hoopla surrounding the sexual revolution, sex is still just one part of life, not the whole enchilada.