Like David Reuben's Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex. . . a keyhole look at sexual practices that's informative and fun to read. Hoping to explode the "performance myths and romantic fantasies" that warp sexual expectations, Carter and Sokol, coauthors of Men Who Can't Love (1987), interviewed 250 adults of varied socioeconomic backgrounds to explore "the real world of sex." Their findings, relayed in an affable way with much quoting of the interviewees, fascinate, amuse, and astonish. "He would try to have sex with me while I was cooking or talking on the phone. Have you ever tried to have a phone conversation with your father or mother while some man is pushing at you from behind?" says one woman in a section on "When Sex is Part of the Breakup" Or in a section on single' thoughts on sex, a 64-year-old widower's lament: "I'm too old to have to take my clothes off in front of strange women." Or, in "Sex With Two or More Women--The Classic Male Fantasy," a man on having sex with four women: ". . .it's not like you think it's going to be. It takes a tremendous amount of stamina, willpower, and physical energy. . .My knees were destroyed." This pattern of excessive complaint sustains throughout; the fundamental reason for it--as the authors argue in the final chapter of "39 Sexual Realities" that binds the anecdotal evidence and transforms it into something more than a prurient litany--is "poor communication," which they find rampant, even among marrieds. Other findings: "All men have sexual anxieties"; most women feel that men don't know how to bring them to orgasm; "almost everyone, married or single, masturbates." With no pretense to statistical surety, but carrying the rugged weight of word-of-mouth truth, this page-turner study is unlikely to dent the scientific community but may fascinate a great many lay readers--especially given the publisher's promised heavy printing and promo push.