I just finished reading The Seven Sexes by William Tenn , and all I can say is… wow! The book contains eight short, science fiction stories, written between 1946 and 1968.
Known as a dark, satirical writer, Tenn doesn’t directly espouse his points of view. Instead, he utilizes clever sarcasm and wit to give us a point of view without being preachy. In Venus and the Seven Sexes, Tenn demonstrates these traits in marvelous fashion. I will not spoil it for you, but this line should seem particularly prescient to modern readers. “It seems that Hollywood California, USA Earth is considered the greatest civilizing influence in the universe by the Terran Government.” Keep in mind, Tenn wrote this in 1949!
Like all great fiction writers, William Tenn demonstrates an uncanny grasp of human motivations and desires. Throughout The Seven Sexes, we read about characters who behave as we would expect. This allows our brains to accept life on Venus, baby-making chemistry kits, and omnipotent, chubby, little girls.
I highly recommend this book, not only to science fiction fans, but to fans of great writing and great stories.
Tip: Google Books has a link to find this book in your local libraries. Just click the link “Find in a Library” on the right side of the page.