Is There Still Sex in the City?by Candace Bushnell
From the pioneering, New York Times bestselling author who brought us Sex and the City comes a wry, witty, and wise look at sex, dating and friendship in New York City after fifty.
Twenty years after her sharp, seminal first book Sex and the City reshaped the landscape of pop culture and dating with its fly on the wall look at the mating rituals of the Manhattan elite, the trailblazing Candace Bushnell delivers a new book on the wilds and lows of sex and dating after fifty.
Set between the Upper East Side of Manhattan and a country enclave known as The Village, Is There Any Sex in the City? gathers Bushnell’s signature short, sharp, satirical commentaries on the love and dating habits of middle aged men and women as they continue to navigate the ever-modernizing world of relationships. Throughout, Bushnell documents 21st century dating phenomenon, such as the “Unintended Cub Situation” in which a sensible older woman suddenly becomes the love interest of a much younger man, the “Mona Lisa” Treatment—a vaginal restorative surgery often recommended to middle aged women, and what it’s really like to go on Tinder dates as a fifty something divorcee. Bushnell also updates one of her most celebrated stories from Sex and the City, “The Bicycle Boys,” a breed of New York man who was always trying to bring his bike up to women’s apartments. Once an anomaly, Bushnell charts their new ubiquitousness, in addition to where, and how to do your own man stalking via bicycle (and whether or not it’s worth it).
In Is There Any Sex in The City? Bushnell looks at love and life from all angles—marriage and children, divorce and bereavement, as well as the very real pressures on women to maintain their youth and have it all. This is a pull-no-punches social commentary and an indispensable companion to one of the most revolutionary dating books of the twentieth century.
“Bushnell [is] the modern flame carrier of an established literary tradition: that of American (usually New York) women writers depicting the rigid social and slackening sexual rules of a very particular American (and, again, usually New York) set through a mix of close personal knowledge and fiction. Edith Wharton, Dorothy Parker and Mary McCarthy can all be cited, in varying degrees, as Bushnell’s predecessors, with a bit of Elaine Dundy thrown in…Compared with the hugely popular television series, the book is tough, unapologetic and jittery with anxiety…. hilarious, hard-edged, delightful, harsh, elegant and fun.”—The Guardian
“The book that sparked a cultural phenomenon.”—Oprah
“I did not move to New York because I watched Sex and the City. I moved to New York because I read it…[it is] dark and cynical and weird….Everyone is mean, and selfish, and complicated, and many of them are not rich, and most of them have wardrobes that go unmentioned… All are reported with Bushnell’s savvy reporter’s eye.”—Garage Vice
“Fascinating….Hilarious.”—Los Angeles Times
Praise for The Carrie Diaries
“If ever a book resounded with positive messages for young people, it’s this one.”—USA Today
“An enjoyable romp of a read.”—Entertainment Weekly
“An addictive, ingenious origin story.”—Los Angeles Times
Six months into my retreat, I got a call from Tina Brown. She had a story idea for me. Now that the appropriate time had passed since my divorce, I should throw myself back into the dating world and write about what it was like to be dating over fifty. I could do internet dating. I could hire a matchmaker. . .
I cut her off.
I don’t think so.
I wasn’t ready to start dating. But most of all, I didn’t want to. I’d been in relationships for nearly thirty-five years. I’d even experienced the full relationship cycle—fall in love, get married, and get divorced.
And now I was supposed to do it all over again? Was engaging in the relationship cycle the only thing I could do with my life? I thought about that good old definition of crazy: Doing the same thing over and over again and hoping for a different result.
It was time to put an end to the cycle. And so I decided for the first time in thirty-four years, to be man-free.
This also meant being sex-free. At this point in my life, I’m not a casual sex person.
I didn’t talk about it, of course. The topic of sex, once the source of so much amusement, embarrassment, fear and joy, rarely came up. My single friends had been single forever and not dating and therefore not getting any, while my married friends were married and dealing with kids and also—I imagined—not getting any.