Diverted into psychiatric hospitals time and again to be "cured" of his homosexuality, her father committed suicide when the author was nine. But he can't deny that the spark between him and Jane is a blaze from the moment they meet. But what began as an all-American childhood soon spun off and went spectacularly awry. In the midst of private trauma and loss, Jane Vandenburgh delights in revealing larger truths about American culture and her life within it. She followed all the rules, and look where it got her--divorced from a cheating accountant who cleaned out her bank account. Her mother - an artist and freethinker - lost custody of her three children when she too spun out of control and was consigned to a mental institution. The author and her brothers were given over to an aunt and uncle who suddenly had, under one roof, seven children and serious problems of their own. Born into "a certain kind of family" - affluent, white, Protestant - she came of age during a time when the sexual revolution began sweeping the cultural landscape, changing our manners and mores forever. Now she's got a new career, a new wardrobe, and a new attitude--she's going to throw caution to the wind while she's in Vegas on business, and have herself a steamy fling. A firefighter by trade, he's in town to investigate a string of fires in his friend's hotel, not to indulge his own desires. Selected pages. Quirky, witty, and uncannily wise, A Pocket History of Sex in the Twentieth Century is a brilliant blend of memoir and cultural revelation. It was right about then that these kids - an unruly pack of barely disciplined surfers - began riding the next set of cultural waves, including sex, drugs, and alcohol, as they faced the kinds of political challenges and riotous new freedoms that would carry so many out to sea. The author has mined this material before: It was the s. She never let herself fall for a bad boy--now she wants to be a bad girl, and see what letting loose and having fun is all about.