Youth in Sexual Ecstasy (Juventud en Extasis) is a novel by the Mexican author of self-help books Carlos Cuauhtemoc Sanchez.
The novel is dedicated to young readers and deals with the themes of love, dating and sex, while promoting the more conservative values on those topics.
The plot is centered on Efren Alvear, a college-aged young man with an active sex life, who on the night's prom he starts a conversation with Joanna, an attractive girl whom he has a crush on, after a few drinks and dancing he sleeps with her but finds the experience unfulfilling. Worse, he acquires an STD; while looking for a physician he comes across the card of a specialist on "sexual dysfunctions" called Dr. Asaf Marin. Efren goes to him for his STD treatment but the doctor in his several sessions with him makes him change on his views on love and sex.
A sequel/follow-up was written by the same author. On it Efren, now an older man, has to deal with supporting and protecting his daughter from her abusive boyfriend and dealing with the strange murder of one of her friends, while arming her daughter and her classmates with the ideas of the previous book.
Compare and contrast to The Game
- Aerith and Bob: While many characters have common sounding names (Jessica, Joanna, Luis) there are others that sound sort-of Lebanese (Efren, Asaf) and downright exotic (Dhamar).
- And the sequel reveals the name of Efren's daughter as Citlalli, an Aztec name.
- All Girls Want Bad Boys: Discussed in a few chapters, by Efren and his friends, Dr. Marin and Efren's mother.
- All Men Are Perverts: Also discussed by Efren with his friends and a teacher.
- A Man Is Not a Virgin: Deconstructed, Efren says to Dr. Marin that today's young men "train themselves" to satisfy their future partners, and that no man would want to "arrive as a newbie" to marriage, the doctor patiently listens to him and then tears apart his argument, by saying that sex is not about technique and experience, its about feeling, and that in fact past experiences accumulate and can become "garbage" that prevent enjoying sex.
- Am I Just a Toy to You?: Joanna's attitude to Efren after he sleeps with her.
- As the Good Book Says...: One chapter is dedicated to the Song of Songs from The Bible.
- Attempted Rape: Efren's stepfather attempted to rape his sister Marietta (aged 11) after coming home drunk one time, he was stopped by her mother.
- Author Filibuster: Dr. Marin serves as the author's mouthpiece for exposing his ideas on sexuality.
- Author Tract: The novel is one big tract promoting sex until marriage and only by love.
- Brainy Brunette: Dhamar.
- But We Used a Condom: Efren mentions to Dr. Marin the contraceptives as one of the biggest incentives for the sexual liberation, the doctor then points out that there's no 100% secure contraceptive, and some can have side effects that make them impractical for frequent use.
- The Casanova: Efren at the beginning.
- Cure Your Gays: Unlike the first book which only had a passing reference to homosexuality, the sequel deals with the topic and gives it the treatment that gays can become straight via voluntary conversion therapy.
"Homosexuals need comprehension, not support."
- Dark and Troubled Past: Efren, his mother and Dr. Marin have one.
- Dead Little Sister: Efren grew up thinking of his sister Marietta as this, turns out that he was mistaken.
- Did Not Do the Research: The sequel, in its section dedicated to homosexuality, it says that homosexuality is the product of a "terrible loneliness" or "exposure to pornography at a young age" or "past sexual abuses"
- Disappeared Dad: Likewise, Efren always thought his father had died after he was born, he learns at the middle of the novel that his father is alive, and at the end it is revealed to him that his father was Dr. Marin all along.
- Distant Finale / Book Ends: The book starts when an older Efren asks his teenaged daughter if she wants to have sex with her boyfriend, the epilogue closes that same scene.
- Domestic Abuser: Efren's stepfather, Luis.
- Everyone Is Related: Lampshaded by Efren when he learns that Dhamar and Joanna are cousins.
- Everyone Has Lots of Sex: Deconstructed, Efren says this to Dr. Marin to justify his lifestyle, the doctor then points to the long-term effects of this.
- In the sequel, this is the case on Efren's daughter, Citlalli's, college.
- Foreshadowing: "I know your mother." -Dr. Marin, also Dhamar mentions that the Dr. frequently asks his patients about their family history to find psychological connections to their issues, Efren then says that he has never asked him about his family.
- Good People Have Good Sex: Efren and Dhamar on their wedding night, also one of the main messages of the book is that sex with love is awesome.
- Good Girls Avoid Abortion: The novel has a strong Pro-Life message: In his backstory, Efren impregnated his old girlfriend Jessica and wanted her to abort, while she pleaded and begged for their baby, Efren gave her the money for the abortion which she took and vanished from his life. Also, Efren mentions to Dr. Marin the abortion as one of the incentives for having sex freely, the doctor then gives him a copy of The Silent Scream. Efren has a Heel Realization after watching it.
- Happily Married: Efren and Dhamar at the end.
- Hello, Nurse!: Joanna is described in this way in the opening paragraphs of the book.
- Hidden Depths: Efren is surprised when he hears the whole story of their past from his mother, he even thinks that he never imagined his mother would have such depths.
- Hollywood Atheist: Efren at the beginning, also Dr. Marin was a "freethinker" before the failure of his first marriage with Efren's mother, after that, in his own words, he "went though a spiritual journey to find the answers for the questions he always thought had the answer for" before fully embracing the Christian faith.
- Hot Mom: Efren considers his mother to be quite attractive for her age.
- I Was Quite a Looker: Further, he imagines that in her youth she must have been extremely beautiful.
- Let's Wait a While: Dhamar gives to Efren this treatment when they begin dating.
- Luke, I Am Your Father: At the end of the book Efren learns that Dr. Marin was his father all along by looking at the picture of a beautiful young woman dedicated to the doctor whom she calls dad, and signed "Marietta", the name of his long-lost sister.
- Mama Bear: Efren's mother when she fights his stepfather for attempting to rape her daughter Marietta.
- Meet Cute: Efren accidentally spills coffee on Dhamar while leaving from his first session with Dr. Marin.
- My God, What Have I Done?: Efren after watching The Silent Scream he thinks about his ex-girlfriend Jessica when he gave her the money to abort his child. And later when he realizes that he has hurt many girls with his past actions of seducing and then dumping them.
- My Greatest Failure: The memory of his old girlfriend, Jessica, becomes this to Efren when he is about to get married to Dhamar.
- My Girl Is Not a Slut: Efren settles in the end for Dr. Marin's receptionist, Dhamar, who is still a virgin.
- At the beginning of the book Efren discusses this with his friends:
"Everyone learns to drive using a used car, but for the life's car that is going to be nice and reliable, only a madman would buy a used car."
"I don't know... there are some good-looking used cars too..."
- Not That Kind of Doctor: Dr. Marin's specialty is in "sexual dysfunctions" (aka: sex therapist), yet Efren goes to him for his STD treatment, the doctor later brings this point up; luckily for Efren the doctor has a bio-pharmacist background.
- Quest for Sex: Completely inverted, it is the quest for reserving sex for your one and true love.
- Pizza Boy Special Delivery / Cheating with the Milkman: Efren's mother when telling him about their past mentions that she started an affair with a repairman who went to fix electrical appliances, the repairman would later become Efren's stepfather who abused him, his sister and his mother.
- Opposites Attract: It is actually said by Dr Marin that if two persons want to join their lives, one factor for them to succeed is to have opposite temperaments, alongside with similar lifestyles and independent realization; Efren and Dhamar agree on this being the case for them.
- Reformed Rakes: Reconstructed, Efren still suffers the effects of his previous loveless sexual experiences (the "garbage" Dr. Marin mentioned) during his marriage with Dhamar, but with the support from his wife he is able to overcome them and be happy with her.
- Sex Equals Love: Thoroughly subverted and deconstructed, Efren's mother even mentions to him that this idea was the cause for the distancing between her and his father: "We only spoke the same language when we made love."
- She Is All Grown Up: Marietta, unfortunately because of this her stepfather attempted to rape her, also the picture on Dr. Marin's house shows that she further blossomed into a quite a beauty.
- STD Immunity: Averted as mentioned above.
- Teacher-Student Romance: Efren's mother tells him that her first sexual experience was at 15 with one of her teachers. It was her life's secret.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Joanna delivers one to Efren right after he finishes having sex with her, for failing to satisfy her.