"Sex isn't everything," Nicole Hardy's mother cautions her in the prologue of her memoir Confessions of a Latter-day Virgin, as the author battles between her strict Mormon upbringing and her increasing longing as a single 30-something for raw human intimacy of the erotic kind. Her memoir, along with French Elle editor Sophie Fontanel's The Art of Sleeping Alone, both seek to seriously respond to the question asked, albeit satirically, by E.B. White and James Thurber in 1929: Is sex necessary? Their conclusions? Yes--and no, and each answer is equally compelling.