The Go Ask Alice! Book of Answers

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Go Ask Alice! Book of Answers pictureEver since the Internet explosion in the early 1990s, Columbia University's award-winning Go Ask Alice! health Q & A Internet service has become confidant, advisor, and friend to millions of readers in search of accurate and nonjudgmental health information online. Now this groundbreaking resource comes to you in print.

In a unique, straightforward style, Go Ask Alice! delivers hard-to-find answers to your sometimes hard-to-ask questions about sex, STIs, relationships, nutrition, fitness, depression, drugs, eating disorders, and many other personal health concerns.

Go Ask Alice! has set the standard for Internet health information, becoming a valuable link for health care providers, teachers, parents, and other Web sites, including the White House home page.



From Columbia College Today

I'm worried that I might be manic-depressive.
Does exercise really reduce stress?
How do I know if I'm gay?
What can be done about excessive body odor?

At Columbia's "Go Ask Alice" website, no question is too personal or too strange. "Go Ask Alice," one of the first sites to take advantage of the interactive potential of the World Wide Web, allows students and other Internet users to receive expert answers to difficult questions with complete anonymity. The site ( is one of the most popular destinations on the Web, receiving over 2.5 million visits per month. Now, for those who prefer thumbing pages to handling a mouse, Columbia's Health Education Program, which manages the site, has gathered some of the most perspicacious questions and answers in The Go Ask Alice Book of Answers: A Guide to Good Physical, Sexual, and Emotional Health (Owl Books/Henry Holt, $15.95). Like the website, The Go Ask Alice Book of Answers provides helpful and candid information on relationships and sexuality, emotional health, fitness and nutrition, and general health, in the non-judgmental, straightforward style that readers of the website have come to rely on.
Fall 1998

From Publishers Weekly
Go Ask Alice, an information service originally available only to Columbia University students but later accessible to others through its Web site, takes book form in this eye-opening collection of questions and answers. The queries are representative of those e-mailed by anonymous visitors to the Go Ask Alice Web site. Responses are from experienced health-care providers and professional health educators. The special value of this work is the personal nature of the questions — they are often ones many people would be afraid to ask or wouldn't know whom to ask — and the positive, sympathetic nature of the responses. Topics includes relationships, sexuality (anatomy, physiology and sexual response), sexual health (reproduction, contraception and sexually transmitted diseases), emotional health, fitness and nutrition, alcohol, nicotine and other drugs, and general health. Whether about nose piercing or sniffing lighter fluid, from a worried lesbian or anxious bulemic, all questions are taken seriously, treated respectfully and given straightforward, nonjudgmental answers. Some are marked with an "R," indicating that more information is to be found in back-of-the-book sources, which often include Web sites and e-mail addresses. A word to parents of the college-bound: don't let them leave home without it.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal
The Go Ask Alice web site is a popular source of health information for young adults, more than a half-million of whom send anonymous inquiries about sex, mental health, nutrition, drugs, and relationships to the site each week. Professional health educators from Columbia University's health education program provide accurate, nonjudgmental answers that encourage young people to learn about and care for their bodies while developing the necessary skills to become healthy adults. This book addresses an assortment of the most frequently asked questions (FAQs) organized by subject, e.g., relationships, sexuality, and emotional health. The extensive resource guide lists organizations, web sites, books, and films for each subject. Broader in scope than Michael J. Basso's The Underground Guide to Teenage Sexuality (LJ 4/15/97), this book is highly recommended for all public libraries and consumer health and young adult collections.?Barbara M. Bibel, Oakland P.L., CA
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist
The title within the title refers not to the 1970s YA classic but to a Web site maintained by Columbia University Health Services. Set up to answer questions about relationships, sex, physical and mental health, nutrition, and related matters, the site eventually was opened to the general public as a quick-reference forum. The book's seven chapters round up queries the site has received and responses to them from Columbia-associated health educators. Boldface headings, ranging in tone from straightforwardness to glibness (e.g., "Hangover helper" and "Lesbian oral sex: Is it better to give than to receive?"), lead readers into each subject. Under them, questions are presented as letters to, and answers as letters from, "Alice." Although not highly detailed, the answers are forthright, quite practical, and often encourage seeking further medical advice. Sidebars containing additional information appear throughout, the Web site address is given at the end of each chapter, and a lengthy resource section, including books and films (many of them major motion pictures), is appended.
Stephanie Zvirin, 1998