A quick scan on Amazon reveals a steady stream of reviews (although their number cannot rival the 5,000-plus posted for 50 Shades).

Joyful sex cams-82

I was newly married and we had just bought our first home.

I secured a contract which guaranteed my legal costs if necessary.” Foss recently found an envelope in his attic containing 30 of the original drawings including several deemed too shocking for inclusion in the British edition of the book.

Illustrating the book suitably tastefully was a challenge.

That message can get lost nowadays when we are surrounded by sexuality and assumed pressure to get it right.” Quilliam is pleased that the book no longer seems revolutionary in the way it undoubtedly did in 1972. We’d had the swinging Sixties, the Pill had arrived, but in reality people didn’t know what they were doing and whether they should be doing it.” Republishing the book for a new generation necessitated omissions and additions. Yes, things had moved on, but the shock of Aids meant people were very concerned with the dangers of sex.” In 1972 the team involved in producing the book was blissfully unaware of such risks.

The internet and Viagra were in, group sex and facial hair were largely out but, says Quilliam, the changes were not always predictable. According to illustrator Chris Foss their concern was whether they could bring their rather daring project to fruition on a shoe-string budget, without ending up in court.

“I was delighted with the job but I was nervous too.

Britain was so prudish then, it was all men in brown raincoats.

At the age of 39, I am just one year younger than The Joy Of Sex.

Next month marks the 40th anniversary of this publishing phenomenon hitting the bookshelves of middle England; but it seems some of us aren’t yet quite as uninhibited about its subject matter as we might have supposed. There are women reading the erotic novel 50 Shades Of Grey on just about every bus in the country.

Hysteria, a film about the history of the vibrator is playing in cinemas (and I don’t mean that sort of cinema).

Is The Joy Of Sex, the first mass-market book to confirm to a generation that there is more, a lot more, to sex than the missionary position, still relevant?