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    1. The 5 Love Languages: The Secret
    2. Straight Talk, No Chaser: How
    3. The Playbook: Suit up. Score chicks.
    4. Gunn's Golden Rules: Life's Little
    5. How To Win Friends and Influence
    6. I Do, Now What?: Secrets, Stories,
    7. How to Talk So Kids Will Listen
    8. What Every BODY is Saying: An
    9. Act Like a Lady, Think Like a
    10. Crucial Conversations: Tools for
    11. The Snuggie Sutra
    12. Codependent No More: How to Stop
    13. Querida Dra. Polo: Las cartas
    14. Love & Respect: The Love She
    15. Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.?
    16. Anam Cara: A Book of Celtic Wisdom
    17. The Game: Penetrating the Secret
    18. Why Men Love Bitches: From Doormat
    19. The Seven Principles for Making
    20. The Language of Letting Go (Hazelden

    1. The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts
    by Gary Chapman
    list price: $14.99 -- our price: $5.91
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0802473156
    Publisher: Northfield Publishing
    Sales Rank: 102
    Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Marriage should be based on love, right? But does it seem as though you and your spouse are speaking two different languages? New York Times bestselling author Dr. Gary Chapman guides couples in identifying, understanding, and speaking their spouse’s primary love language—quality time, words of affirmation, gifts, acts of service, or physical touch.

    By learning the five love languages, you and your spouse will discover your unique love languages and learn practical steps in truly loving each other. Chapters are categorized by love language for easy reference, and each one ends with specific, simple steps to express a specific language to your spouse and guide your marriage in the right direction. A newly designed love languages assessment will help you understand and strengthen your relationship. You can build a lasting, loving marriage together.

    Gary Chapman hosts a nationally syndicated daily radio program called A Love Language Minute that can be heard on more than 150 radio stations as well as the weekly syndicated program Building Relationships with Gary Chapman, which can both be heard on

    The Five Love Languages is a consistent new York Times bestseller - with over 5 million copies sold and translated into 38 languages.  This book is a sales phenomenon, with each year outselling the prior for 16 years running!

    Includes a promotional code to gain exclusive online access to the new comprehensive love languages assessment.

    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Where's The Needle On *Your* Love Tank?, October 7, 2003
    How's your relationship with your mate? Your children? Your parents? Your siblings? It may be a matter of the state of the "love tank".

    Author Gary Chapman in his book The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate believes everyone has a love tank, and that tank is filled by different love languages. These five languages are Gifts, Words of Affirmation, Quality of Time, Acts of Service, and Physical Touch.

    Often, we tend to give love in the languages we are most fluent in, which usually ends up being the languages that fill up our love tank. This would be why a husband who does yard work, dishes, car maintenance, etc. (Acts of Service) is floored when his wife says "You never show me you love me. You never cuddle with me, or caress my hair, or make the first move for sex." (Physical Touch). Or, "Why don't you spend time with me? Why do you work so much?" (Quality Time). And, "Why don't you buy me flowers? Why don't you ever get me cards or balloons...just because?" (Gifts) Or "You never tell me what I mean to you. Why don't you ever share with me what I mean to you, or what my good qualities are?" (Words of Affirmation) But, if her language is primarily Acts of Service, she'll feel so loved and honored because her husband does so many things for her, and thus feels "full" in her love tank.

    This may not sound like a big deal, but considering the divorce rate is 50% (as one relationship instance), and so many seem to be unhappy with their primary relationships, the concept of love languages may very well be a signficant factor in understanding self and others, and in relationship growth. Perhaps relationships get rocky or arrive at an impasse because individuals are speaking a different love language than what fills up the "love tank" of the object of their affection...and a result, the recipient doesn't feel loved. It's not that they feel empty and unfufilled because love isn't being given, but because the language "spoken" is not something that registers to the recipient as a form of love.

    Chapman further theorizes that we usually have 2 main love languages that fill up our tank. He also says that if a person has a hard time identifying their main love languages, they've either been on empty for so long and are out of touch with their needs, or they have been so filled up by their spouse, that all 5 languages tend to speak to them equally.

    A story in the book that illustrates the love tank theory is the "burnt toast syndrome". A woman was sick in bed. Her husband would always bring her burnt toast to her when she was ailing. She was so hurt and offended by this repeated insensitivity and ignorance, that she finally burst into tears one day, and asked him why he did that...and didn't he care? She was floored to hear him say "I'm sorry honey. I had no idea. Burnt toast is my favorite, and I gave you what I would consider my favorite breakfast...burnt toast."

    Chapman writes: "When your spouse's emotional love tank is full and he feels secure in your love, the whole world looks right and your spouse will move out to reach his highest potential in life. But when the love tank is empty and he feels used but not loved, the whole world looks dark and he will likely never reach his potential for good in the world."

    I recommend this book highly. It could very well be a relationship saver!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Learning to Speak, December 23, 2010
    The main idea behind this book is that just as people have unique personality preferences, we all have unique preferences for what we find satisfying and motivating when it comes to love. Your love language is the way that you most feel loved and cared for. The relationship expert behind the book arranges the book into the five love languages, and provides quizzes to help you determine which language you are:

    - Words of Affirmation:
    If this is your love language, you feel most cared for when your partner is open and expressive in telling you how wonderful they think you are, how much they appreciate you, etc. Basically, they find ways to remind you that their world is a better place because you are in it.

    - Acts of Service:
    If your partner offering to watch the kids so you can go to the gym (or relieving you of some other task) gets your heart going, then this is your love language.

    - Affection:
    This love language is just as it sounds. A warm hug, a kiss, snuggling, and sexual intimacy make you feel most loved when this is your love language. Touch is very important to you.

    - Quality Time:
    This love language is about being together with your partner, fully present and engaged in the activity at hand, no matter how trivial.

    - Gifts:
    The final love language is centered on the idea that your partner taking the time to think of you and give you a gift, no matter how small, is what makes you feel loved and appreciated.

    The problem is most people love how they want to be loved, and that doesn't tend to align with how their partner wants to be loved. So, you have to learn to speak your partner's love language. The author also believes that focusing intently on speaking the love languages will rekindle relationships where people don't even seem to like each other anymore.

    I find it challenging each day to put my own needs aside and focus on speaking my partner's love language, especially when competing priorities (work, kids, etc.) get in the way. This takes A LOT of emotional intelligence, and a girlfriend suggested a GREAT book that has helped me with it Emotional Intelligence 2.0

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Five Love Languages - by Gary Chapman, December 13, 1999
    The author reveals, through 25 years of counseling, that he has determined people communicate love in five basic ways.They are Quality Time, Words of Affirmation, Acts of Service, Physical Touch and Giving Gifts. For example, if my primary love language is Quality Time, then I will show my love to others by spending quality time with them. If I don't receive that in return, my love tank will be empty. The author stresses the importance of knowing your loved one's love language so that you can communicate love to that person in a way in which he/she feels love, so that their love tank can be continually replenished. If my spous's love language is acts of service and he is always doing things for me to communicate his love, but I receive love through the language of quality time, I will not receive his acts of service as communicating love and therefore my love tank will be dry. I in return, must communicate my love to him through acts of service in order to fill his love tank. An empty love tank causes relationships to deteriorate.This book was excellent for teaching us to recognize the way in which our loved ones receive and feel loved.

    5-0 out of 5 stars BEST GIFT I HAVE EVER RECEIVED, CHANGED MY ENTIRE LIFE, October 4, 1999
    It is so simple and easy to understand. After I read it, I couldn't understand why I hadn't realized these concepts before. I wish I could give a copy of this book to every man, woman, and child. What a wonderful world we would have if we all understood the "Five Love Languages" and spoke them to all we meet everyday!! The family is a great place to start. My family and I regularly ask eachother "How full is the 'love tank?'". When things are tough at school, work or life in general, we now ask eachother freely "What can I do to make your love tank full?" Sometimes only the passing of time will cure a family problem (example: problems at work), but our family's committment to express to eachother the variety of dialects between quality time, words of affirmation, and physical touch (which seem to be the most needed of the 5 languages in our particular household when outside problems occur) can make the hardest of times go by so much easier and faster. How I wish everyone would read this book!!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Saved my marriage, January 12, 2004
    This book is absolutely incredible. Having serious marital problems, I was desperate for any kind of help. I was about to turn to counseling when I heard about this book. I decided to buy it so that my husband and I could read it together.

    Not expecting too much, one lazy morning I suggested to my husband that we lay in bed and begin reading this book out loud to eachother. We read 120 pages that morning! We could not put it down! Both of us shed a lot of tears that morning, this book really hit home.

    That morning when we woke up, everything seemed hopeless for us. After reading this book, we had hope that our problems can be resolved. Our attitude toward eachother has greatly changed since we read this book.

    Basically this book explains that people feel loved in different ways. For example, my love language is "quality time" and my husband's love language is "personal touch." Without quality time with my husband, I feel unloved... my husband feels unloved when we have a lack of physical contact. Our love languages are so different... before reading this book, I just thought that my husband wanted more sex for selfish reasons. When in reality, personal contact is what he needs to feel loved. Before reading this book, my husband hated when I nagged about spending time together.. but now he realizes that spending time with me is the best way to tell me that he loves me.

    Dr. Chapman says in this book that LOVE IS A CHOICE. Find your partner's love language style, then choose to show love to your partner in that way (it's not about what YOU need to feel loved, it's about what YOUR PARTNER needs). I thought that spending quality time with my spouse was the way I can show him I love him. In reality, that's MY love language, not HIS.

    Even if your partner does not want to read this book with you, there are ways you can begin to repair your marriage on your own, and before you know it, your partner will begin to reciprocate.

    This book is INCREDIBLE. I plan to pass it around my friends and family. Please invest the $12 and read this book, your marriage will never be the same again!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Five Languages Not Just for Couples, February 13, 2000
    What I love about this book is that it is a resource that helps me with people in my life. The title mentions "mate," yet the book gives insight to how all of us speak different love "languages." It doesn't necessarily mean within a romantic relationship. Some people are more inclined to give little gifts when showing someone they care. These are people who usually "expect" little gifts to show them how much they are cared about. The same goes for physically affectionate people, people who believe words said are most important, and so on. This is a great gift book for those going into relationships, those suffering from a recent relationship ending, as well as those who are in a present relationship. It's for women and men equally. Read it and find out what language you speak and therefore desire. You'll probably realize why roses aren't always the answer!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Learn to Speak Your Partner's Love Language, February 9, 2004
    Requests give direction to love, but demands stop the flow of love. ~Gary Chapman

    It is amazing how you will just have learned a lesson and then read it in a book, however, there are many lessons you don't want to learn five years from now. This book is filled with ideas on how you can immediately transform your relationship from a cold grave to a peaceful island resort. Perhaps you want to change your life into an amazing adventure or you want to calm the storms.

    Gary Chapman presents five love languages. One of these languages may be your primary love language, but he takes it further and explores the dialects of love. I think that many of us want all five languages, but there are various ways each can be expressed.

    Gary explains the five languages in detail and finally you will understand why some people don't respond to your gifts and others go wild with happy kitten joy. When you meet someone who shares your primary language it can feel like you have entered a magical country where everyone is speaking your language.

    For some individuals, "words of encouragement" will be much higher on their list than "the show of love through gifts" or "acts of service."

    I had trouble deciding which language was my favorite, but I know I get a bit happy when I receive gifts. However, I noticed that I never complain about not receiving gifts. Gary actually made it easier to figure out when he started to talk about what you complain about most. I normally say: "You are not listening to me."

    While I enjoy gifts, I'm never demanding in this area. So then I considered "Quality Time." Bingo, I was very concerned about "Quality Conversation." There is definitely "bliss" in "sympathetic dialogue." This is actually a rare thing indeed. When you talk to people, most of the time they are more worried about what they are going to say next and when you find someone who actually listens to what you are saying and responds in a way that makes you feel understood, that is bliss.

    So, I was very happy to have discovered my primary love language and I also figured out why people in my life don't always respond to gifts in the way I think they would. Some do and they will be getting more boxes of homemade cookies, for sure. ;)

    Gary does bring out various aspects of love that make you realize that love is not just a happy feeling of infatuation. It was interesting to read about how long the initial bliss stage lasts in most relationships and then to read about the decline and divorce rates for first, second and third marriages.

    There are examples in this book that present great hope for marriages that have grown cold or are on the rocks. Even one partner can read this book and change their relationship.

    There is a study guide at the end of the book and the questions can be used at home or in a class setting.

    "The Five Love Languages" is an essential book for marriage counselors, couples and anyone who wants to figure out how their partner responds to various forms of love.

    ~The Rebecca Review

    5-0 out of 5 stars Can You Say "I Love You" So Your Partner Really Hears You?, January 3, 1999
    Dr. Gary Chapman has provided engaged and married couples with a wonderfully useful and clear way of discovering and communicating with each other about their most important needs. In fact, Dr. Chapman is helping us realize the ways in which we experience love differently from person to person. You may feel great love towards your partner but be expressing it in a way he or she can't readily experience because their "Love Language" is not the same. For example, I may buy wonderful gifts for my wife to show how much I cherish her--the Love Language of Gift Giving-- and expect her to be deeply grateful. But it may be that it would mean far more to her if I would simply take out the garbage since her love language is "Acts of service". If you want to experience quick improvement in your ability to understand and fulfill needs in your relationship, read The Five Love Languages. In this book, Dr. Chapman, who has effectively counseled couples for many years, offers thorough descriptions of each love language and how to successfully share them for a love-rich partnership. I use this book as a must-read in counseling couples and at my Love in Action marriage retreats, always with positive response. Enjoy!

    2-0 out of 5 stars A good theory gone bad, April 14, 2006
    I was drawn to this book because the foundation of Dr. Chapman's Five Languages is very simple yet profoundly important. But that being said, this foundation is also little more than common sense. It doesn't take a psychology degree to know that we each have our own values and priorities, and different personal triggers for happiness. My hope for this book was that it would build on my and my husband's Average Jane/Joe common sense and help us understand and practice it more deeply after 10 years of marriage. Unfortunately, what starts off as a great vehicle never quite surpasses 20 miles an hour. This book did a good job of reminding me to recognize and honor differences, but it didn't teach me anything new.

    The paragraph above would have prompted me to give this book 3 stars ("It was OK"). But the two paragraphs below tempted me to give it 1 star ("Hated it"). In the end I'm compromising at 2 stars. There are two things about this book that really bothered me.

    One: Dr. Chapman seems to live in Disneyland. The contrived Hallmark card image on the book's cover is a good indication that its contents are idealistic rather than realistic. He believes that we can get over years of troubles and pain through exercises that include watching ducks on a lake together, or saying, "Thanks in advance for mowing the lawn," instead of "I want you to mow the lawn." Is there wisdom to his suggestions? Most certainly. Do they fall short in the real world? Most certainly. One after another, he introduces us to couples who have come to him after decades of misery and threats of divorce, and within just a few months they're walking off into the sunset (presumably the one on the cover) to live Happily Ever After without cracking a sweat. The more of these couples I read about, the more I felt like I was watching "The Cosby Show" where life's problems are easily solved and everyone plays their part effortlessly because the writer scripted it that way. Dr. Chapman consistently sidesteps the real world where humans are complex and life is inevitably complicated.

    Two: At nearly the end of the book I became outright enraged, prompting me to write this, my first ever Amazon review. A woman comes to Dr. Chapman and tells him that her husband dismisses her, belittles and insults her, and tells her outright that he hates her. Dr. Chapman asks what her husband's primary language is, and she says it's Physical Touch. He then advises her to have sex with her husband. She protests, saying that sex makes her feel degraded and used as an object because she knows she isn't respected or cared for as a human being. Dr. Chapman persists, telling her (quotes shortened but not taken out of context), "Your response is normal. That's why loving someone who doesn't love you is unnatural and difficult. You need to rely on your faith in God to do this. Read Jesus' sermon on loving your enemies and then ask God to help you practice the teachings of Jesus." The woman again protests, saying it would be hypocritical of her to sleep with a man who hates her and whom she may well hate in return. Dr. Chapman persists again, saying, "If you claim to have feelings you don't have, that's hypocritical. But if you express an act that is designed for the other person's pleasure, it's simply a choice. Your action isn't born of emotional bonding, it's born of doing something for his benefit. That's what Jesus meant." WHAT?! Jesus wants women to pleasure men for their benefit without regard to emotional bonding?! I'm sorry, I thought that Jesus taught us the opposite. From there, Dr. Chapman tells her that if she gives her husband sex six times in the next month, chances are he'll give her the Thursday evening Scrabble game she wants. I could hardly absorb this justification as I was reading. Dr. Chapman's end conclusion is that his plan is a "miracle" anyone of us can practice in our own marriage.

    For many little reasons, and for the one huge reason of the paragraph above, I am dumbfounded that this book has averaged a 5 star rating from more than 300 readers. I find myself deeply dismayed that people are incorporating into their belief systems advice which is so unrealistic, oversimplified, and even outright degrading at times.

    Again, the foundation of this book is a good one, and it's good to be reminded that we need to see and care about others instead of only ourselves. If only Dr. Chapman would build on this positive in a realistic and respectful way.

    5-0 out of 5 stars For a love that lasts a lifetime!, March 22, 2002
    I brought this book because my boyfriend and I were going through some major troubles. It wasn't that we didn't love each other; we just weren't communicating the love we had for one another.

    I sat down and read this book and by the time I got to page 51, I had already cried and had realized that my view of love was one sided at best. The funny thing is I would shower my boyfriend with flowers and gifts and sentimental trinkets and it never seemed to faze him. I couldn't understand why until I read this book, and then I realized that I wasn't loving him, but instead trying to show him how to love me.

    Women and men are different and so it only stands to reason that their concept of love would be different. And what I found out was not that he didn't love me...but that wasn't doing a good job at loving him. Thinking back on all the pain we went through. It makes me wonder how many relationships break up not because they don't love one another, but because they can't communicate that love effectively to their mate.

    How many times have we tried to get our needs and wants met and the only words that come out are how they haven't done this or they aren't doing that instead of just saying I really miss when you used to do this because it made me feel such & such. When frustrated we often speak out of anger instead of love. This book teaches you how to effectively communicate the love you have for a person in a manner in which they can not only understand it, but also reap the rewards from being completely loved.

    I recommend this book for anyone who believes that love is worth making sacrifices and to anyone who believes that love is worth the effort. If you haven't figured out by now that things worth having are things worth working and fighting for then you will never have a prosperous relationship.

    This book gives you the opportunity to take a bad situation and turn it into a situation in which your relationship can flourish and nurture not only the two of you as a couple but also you as an individual. ... Read more

    2. Straight Talk, No Chaser: How to Find, Keep, and Understand a Man
    by Steve Harvey
    list price: $24.99 -- our price: $13.43
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0061728993
    Publisher: Amistad
    Sales Rank: 140
    Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    In the instant number one New York Times bestseller Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man, Steve Harvey gave millions of women around the globe insight into what men really think about love, intimacy, and commitment. In his new book he zeros in on what motivates men and provides tips on how women can use that knowledge to get more of what they need out of their relationships, whether it's more help around the house, more of the right kind of attention in the bedroom, more money in the joint bank account, or more truth when it comes to the hard questions, such as: Are you committed to building a future together? Does my success intimidate you? Have you cheated on me?

    In Straight Talk, No Chaser: How to Find, Keep, and Understand a Man, Steve Harvey shares information on:

    How to Get the Truth Out of Your Man
    Tired of answers that are deceptive? Harvey lays out a three-tier, CIA-style of questioning that will leave your man no choice but to cut to the chase and deliver the truth.

    Dating Tips, Decade by Decade
    Whether you're in your twenties and just starting to date seriously, in your thirties and feeling the tick of the biological clock, or in your forties and beyond, Steve provides insight into what a man, in each decade of his life, is looking for in a mate.

    How to Minimize Nagging and Maximize Harmony at Home
    He said he'd cut the lawn on Saturday, and you may have been within reason to think that that meant Saturday before ten in the evening, but exploding at him is only going to ruin the mood for everyone, which means no romance. Steve shows you how to talk to your man in a way that moves him to action and keeps the peace.

    And there's much more, including Steve's candid answers to questions you've always wanted to ask men.

    Drawing on a lifetime of experience and the feedback women have shared with him in reaction to Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man, Harvey offers wisdom on a wealth of topics relevant to both sexes today. He also gets more personal, sharing anecdotes from his own family history. Always direct, often funny, and incredibly perceptive, media personality, comedian, philanthropist, and (finally) happily married husband, Steve Harvey proves once again that he is the king of relationships.

    ... Read more


    4-0 out of 5 stars Harvey is Open, Revealing, and Helpful to All Who Choose to LISTEN - Four Stars, December 10, 2010

    Comedian and media star Steve Harvey has now penned his second best seller. In this book he is directing his advice to women, but I believe that men will benefit from this book just as much. The objective is to give women an informed understanding of men, and only a man could write such a book. There is no question that he is coming at relationships from a different point of view based on having living in his own intense relationships.

    He knows what works and what doesn't, and he has spent considerable time trying to figure out how a man is hardwired in his brain differently than a woman. Most of us are dealing with the behavior resulting from how we think. Harvey is suggesting that we deal with the thinking itself.

    A key thought that he has developed is that everything we as men do is filtered through our title, which simply means who we are. The next question is how we get that title, which means what we do for a living. The final question becomes what regard we are held in by our fellow human beings. He is very honest in saying that by this we mean what is the compensation we receive.

    Harvey believes that unless we come to terms with these three questions prior to marriage, we probably can't be successfully married and therein lies the enormous divorce rate we witness in our society. Men are marrying prior to having an understanding of who they are. Without that self knowledge the relationship is doomed before it even gets started.

    I believe that Harvey is touching new ground in this book, and certainly has become his own person. In the book he develops the idea that we as men have to learn how to be men before we can be anything to anyone else, who chooses to love us. What's even more important is that we certainly must do this before we can love them back.

    We probably all realize by now that women prefer flowers, and yet men wish to buy them plants that will live for years. It's the same concept with weddings. Women dream about weddings, and yet have any of us ever met a man who dreams about his wedding day? Strange isn't it?

    The author goes through the ages of a man's life and what a man has to figure out during each decade of his life. What Harvey has to say is fascinating:

    The 20's
    You must make a decision to figure out your life, what do you want to do, what is your work? While we are figuring out our work, a woman is concerned with her biological clock, while for us it's the financial clock.

    The 30's
    The game is getting old. We are looking for a woman with the least amount of drama. Can she add support to our lives, is she loyal, and will she bring fun to relationship as well?

    The 40's
    Nothing can be as good as coming home to a family of people who threw their arms around you. A man needs somebody he can talk to, who can give you comfort, and companionship.

    The 50's
    It's time to solidify your legacy, as well as to realize that your body is starting to betray you.


    As men we are hunters, and we show our love for a woman by doing three things:

    1) We PROVIDE for her

    2) We PROTECT her

    3) We PROFESS our love for her

    I think we as readers will learn a great deal from this book. There is much wisdom in what Harvey has to teach us. Whether it's regarding the conflict of he won't commit, while she won't leave, or how to claim the blessing of the breakup, there is much to gain. Just remember not to buy into the fairy tale, and thank you for reading this review.

    Richard C. Stoyeck

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good Advice for Young Women, December 7, 2010
    First, let me say that I am not a fan of Steve Harvey. I've always thought he was a bit pompous and "me" centered and that hasn't changed after reading his book. I still think he's a tad arrogant to be writing relationship books; I ordered this book only because it was available briefly for free on Kindle pre-order. Who made him an expert?

    That said, what makes him an expert is that he's a MAN. He knows what men are like and he's honest with women about what men really think and how they really behave when we're not around. I think every young woman should read the section where he delineates what men are looking for in their 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s and beyond. As a 61 y/o woman who has been happily married for 15 years to a good yet flawed man, I think Mr. Harvey gives sound advice, whether women want to hear what he's saying or not.

    What makes me choke on giving 5 stars is that I do not like being placed inside a category (ie. the assumption that all women think or act the same). For instance, his first book's title: Act Like a Lady but Think Like a Man. As a woman, I think like I think; I do not think like either a man or a woman and resent the inference that we are all cookie-cutter copies of one another. As a young woman, I thought like a ditz and now, as a 61 y/o woman working on her doctoral program in Psychology, I use critical thinking and hopefully think like a scholar.

    Also, not all women are so desperate that they are in a hurry to get married. Some women prize an education and desire to have a career while they are still young enough to enjoy its rewards just as much as a man does. No woman should ever "settle" for less than what she wants in a man just to alleviate her loneliness. A woman, like a man, should learn to be at peace with herself and with her God before she attempts to attach herself to a man.

    If you can get past the sexism and the man's obvious admiration for himself, this book has good advice for any woman who wants to understand men better.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good information, December 18, 2010
    I have to give Steve Harvey credit for his attempts to make women aware of how men think and how we can prevent ourselves from making the same mistakes over and over again. Much of the book is common sense and it's really nothing new that hasn't been said before. Makes a good read however and I enjoyed this book as much as I did the first book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars What a great read !!, December 14, 2010
    I started reading this book and knew from the first few chapters this was going to be a great read !
    I found it very insightful & useful in my own relationship. Sometimes its better to hear from a man, how they operate. This book definitely helps to understand them & their thought process.
    I would recommend this to any lady wanting an inside view to the mans brain & how he feels about relationships. Thanks Steve !!!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Great Book for Women Already in Relationships, December 12, 2010
    I really enjoyed Steve Harvey's first book Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think About Love, Relationships, Intimacy, and Commitment. I've read a lot of relationship books and it was the first one that I had read that really focused on a man's point of view and basically told women when it was time to walk away and how to recognize whether a man is a good man or not, not yet ready to commit or never will commit, etc. I'm giving this book four stars because it lives up to it's title - it's straight talk. He's telling women things they might not want to hear. I'm not giving it 5 stars because I got bored with his personal anecdotes pretty quickly and because I know some men who are not anything like the men Harvey describes. I don't doubt that his analysis is accurate for most men, though.

    This book is a good follow-up for women who were left with a lot of questions after reading Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man. So, I would first suggest reading that book and then reading this one. As a single woman in my 20's I didn't find this book as helpful as the first - don't get me wrong. There was a lot of good information, but it seemed to aimed more at women trying to keep/satisfy/or get along better with their man. For single gals, a book on how to find a man and cultivate the relationship early on would be better. I mean, I'm dating men in their 20's and early 30's and a lot of the advice seemed tailored toward more seasoned daters.

    Steve's advice for women looking for a man is basically to look your best all of the time, and to hold out on the bedroom for 90 days until you get to know him better - which requires being inquisitive and asking detailed questions. This book is chock full of great tidbits for women already in a relationship, living with a man, and married to help you get along with your man better. That's the other reason that I give this book 4 starts. I'm glad I purchased it on my Kindle, because I'll definitely go back and re-read it once I meet someone new.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Second Recipe for Loneliness, December 26, 2010

    Recipe for Loneliness Number Two
    The simplistic and formulaic notion that men want different things than women, and that Love is simply
    figuring out those two sets of criteria and applying them, is a recipe for loneliness and relationship failure.
    The central concepts of Harvey's relationship opus fail to touch the mythical and truthful core of Love--the melting of Self and Other.
    Harvey doesn't even go in that room.
    Instead he leaves men and women with lists of ways to get along with the Other. No pass;not Love. More like highly-refined roommatehood.
    Friends with privileges.
    A rehash of John Gray's, Men are from Mars...and a rehash of Harvey's first book, this self-help book in neither about the Self nor helpful.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Common Sense, December 12, 2010
    Ladies, why buy a book to try and figure out men. Don't you think there is more time to spend on your future, you self-esteem, etc? You can take this guys advice and have low self-esteem and issues and things will always be the same. Yes he is a man, but he categorizes way too much. Not every woman is the way he describes and neither is every man.

    I never liked Steve Harvey either, he is very stuck on himself and is making money off of telling women something that should be common knowledge. Notice how no men are running out to buy books to figure us out? Straight talk, no chaser: Pay attention to what men say and do and have a level head and you will never go wrong. Do not stick around for bs, give 2 chances and that is it.

    He is going to make a monopoly off of desperation.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Straight Talk for Men and Women also in..., December 7, 2010
    Steve Harvey has a new book about men, why they cheat and why they commit. There are so many new books by Black authors this fall! Great. Re: Harvey's book, yes, men do cheat, and even after they commit, they might still cheat. And yes, sometimes they lie to get what they want :-). So women need to maintain themselves amidst it all--their health and their sanity. There is more "straight talk" in the book Living Well, Despite Catching Hell: The Black Woman's Guide to Health, Sex and Happiness. In that book, the Happiness section addresses relationships and gives the younger set of women in a not-so-committed relationship a four-step approach to healthier lives; they are "Close Your Legs, Be Well Read, Tend that Body and Sweat that Head." Hello! Now that's some "straight talk!" As women, we love our men, and the Sex section encourages women to overcome some long-held hang-ups to enjoy intimate relations. But we have to also deal straight up re: health issues, so it's important to "Trust, but Verify!" Congrats on the new book. Between Straight Talk and Living Well, the beauty and barber shops will be busy with conversation in 2011.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Quicker delivery, December 7, 2010
    I thought I would receive this book on it's release date. Otherwise I would have gotten it at a book store. Very disappointed. ... Read more

    3. The Playbook: Suit up. Score chicks. Be awesome.
    by Barney Stinson, Matt Kuhn
    list price: $13.00 -- our price: $7.49
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 1439196834
    Publisher: Touchstone
    Sales Rank: 123
    Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    Since the dawn of history man has searched for the answer to the most fundamental of questions: “Why am I here . . . not banging chicks?” The search is over. Now, with the help of The Playbook, you’ll be able to approach any beautiful woman, discover her innermost passion, and use that to trick her into sleeping with you. You’ll master more than 75 seduction techniques, developed by pickup guru and all-around good guy Barney Stinson, guaranteed to turn you into a bona fide ladies’ man. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Suit Up!, October 7, 2010
    This is a hilarious read, another gem from the 'How I Met Your Mother' series. The "plays" Barney Stinson uses to pick up women would not work on a girl with half a brain in real life, but nevertheless, it's fun to think about trying to pull off some of these moves on girls. You take it for what it is-- a great extension of a great episode of the show. The ones featured on the show are there: "The Mrs. Stinsfire", "The My Penis Grants Wishes", "The Cheap Trick", "The Scuba Diver", "The He's Not Coming", "The Snasa", "The Don't Drink That!", "The Ted Mosby", "The Scuba Diver", and among others, my personal favorite, "The Lorenzo Von Matterhorn."

    There are exactly 76 plays broken down into sections from the basic to the advanced. Each play has its own fact sheet. You're given a success rate, what type of woman the play attracts, the requirements to perform the play, the prep time, and the "bummers", which is a way of saying "but here's the catch."
    From there, the play is broken down into steps. The rest is self-explanatory.
    I won't explain any of the new plays in detail, but I'll give you a couple play names so as to build a little intrigue:
    - "The Little Orphan Barney"
    - "The Ghost"
    - "The Mannequin"
    - "The Confused Inheritor"
    - "The Ballet Defector"
    - "The Vampire"
    - "The I Can Land This Plane"
    - "The Trojan Lesbian"
    - "The Ghost Of Christmas Future"

    It carries much of the same type of humor as 'The Bro Code.' It follows common stereotype assumptions of men and women, leaves little remarks, anecdotes and/or tips at the end of some plays (and in between) and extensively uses sarcasm to make very obvious points. If you're a fan of 'The Bro Code', I highly recommend picking this up. It's creative and smart and I doubt would be offensive or repulsive in any way to anyone. As a matter of fact, I think it appeals just as much to women as it does men, especially those women who have been the target of some ridiculous pick-up scheme (I'm guessing that's somewhere in the range of most to all). After all, they're the "victims" in this, so to speak. Might as well make light of it.

    Like the show, 'The Playbook' is well thought out, well executed, and well... just plain quirky. Hopefully it wins your praise as well.

    Note: The episode this book is based on is called 'The Playbook.' It's episode 8 of Season 5 and the 96th of the series.

    Grade: A+

    4-0 out of 5 stars Bro! Suit up!!, October 27, 2010
    How could you not love this stuff. Too funny. The HIMYM writers are great. Love the show. Love the books. Barney is great. Ted is a tool. See if you can find this at like half price books or something. I know it's really cheap already but still... It's such a fast funny read you can easily read the entire thing in the bathroom in one morning. Borrow it from a Bro.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Do Not Try This At Home, October 24, 2010
    This is basically a spoof version of pickup artists' routines manuals such as The Art of the Approach and Rules of the Game, and as such should be considered more of a companion piece to the show than an actual how-to guide because it demonstrates the absurd lengths Barney will go to for his next conquest. While I'm certain you can pull off The Fireman in the real world because I've been mistaken for one at least twice just by wearing a Boston Fire duty T-shirt I got online, there's no way you're going to find a girl so stupid that she'll fall for The Olympian's lock-in prop of an aluminum foil-wrapped oatmeal raisin cookie posing as an Olympic silver medal. ... Read more

    4. Gunn's Golden Rules: Life's Little Lessons for Making It Work
    by Tim Gunn
    list price: $23.99 -- our price: $16.31
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 1439176566
    Publisher: Gallery
    Sales Rank: 540
    Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    On the runway of life, Tim Gunn is the perfect life coach.  You’ve watched him mentor talented designers on the hit television show Project Runway. Now the inimitable Tim Gunn shares his personal secrets for “making it work”—in your career, relationships, and life. Filled with delightfully dishy stories of fashion’s greatest divas, behind-the-scenes glimpses of Runway’s biggest drama queens, and never-before-revealed insights into Tim’s private life, Gunn’s Golden Rules is like no other how-to book you’ve ever read. In the world according to Tim, there are no shortcuts to success. Hard work, creativity, and skill are just the beginning. By following eighteen tried-and-true principles, you can apply Tim’s rules to anything you set your mind to. You’ll learn why Tim frowns on displays of bad behavior, like the vitriolic outburst by Martha Stewart’s daughter about her mother’s name-brand merchandise. You’ll discover the downfalls of divadom as he describes Vogue’s André Leon Talley being hand-fed grapes and Anna Wintour being carried downstairs by her bodyguards. And you’ll get Tim’s view on the backstabbing by one designer on Project Runway and how it brilliantly backfired. Then there are his down-to-earth guidelines for making life better—for yourself and others—in small and large ways, especially in an age that favors comfort over politeness, ease over style. Texting at the dinner table? Wearing shorts to the theater? Not in Tim’s book. Living a well-mannered life of integrity and character is hard work, he admits, but the rewards are many: being a good friend, being glamorous and attractive, and being a success— much like Tim himself! He is never one to mince words. But Tim Gunn is always warm, witty, wise, and wonderfully supportive— just the mentor you need to design a happy, creative, and fulfilling life that will never go out of style. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Carry On!, September 7, 2010
    Tim Gunn, from 'Project Runway' has written a book filled with tidbits of advice about life, love, celebrities, family and how to be your own person. It is an easy, fun book to read. Tim is a man of his word, he gives it to us straight, and tells the truth to whomever is asking. He doesn't play games, and the interesting stories of celebrities may be a seller for this book, but his advice and stories of his life are the real gold.

    Tim grew up in Washington, D.C., the son of the ghostwriter for J. Edgar Hoover. The stories he could tell, and he does give us a few. One interesting bit is the day he and his sister were invited to see Vivian Vance in J Edgar Hoover's office. Tim loved Ethel Mertz from 'I Love Lucy' and was ecstatic at the meeting. A lovely lady but upon reflection she had a similarity in looks to Mr Hoover. Could it be that the rumors that Mr Hoover liked to cross dress were true, and Vivian was in reality the lovely J Edgar Hoover? Tim's dad never told any stories from his life with the FBI. His dad died from Alzheimer's disease, and his mother is still alive and driving him crazy in a loving sort of way. Tim knew at a young age he was different. He suffered from a stutter and was picked on. At one time he attempted suicide, and this opened the door to therapy, and that may have been a saving grace for Tim Gunn. Tim moved to New York and started his career in fashion. He was on the faculty of Parsons The New School for Design, and was chair of fashion design at the school from August 2000 to March 2007, after which he joined Liz Claiborne as its Chief Creative Officer.

    His most famous role is that of on-air mentor to designers on 'Project Runway', and that role has led to Bravo's Tim Gunn's Guide to Style. He is such a leader of fashion advice and style that he is in great demand. Personally he would prefer to stay at home. He is a loner and loves his life. He had one great love, and that turned out badly. He is not sure that he won't meet someone, but he is happy with his life as it is. He has a sister and a niece, Wallace, whom he adores. The book is filled with amusing incidents with celebrities, e.g Issac Mizrahi and the 'Diva from Vogue', Anna Wintour. He likes Martha Stewart but thinks her daughter is perpetually angry. Tim Gunn believes in being nice to everyone unless someone cuts him off. He offers much good advice and gives examples-one issue that I wholeheartedly agree with is the manner is which we treat waiters and wait staff. To be mean and surly shows off your true personality, and those who under tip are sometimes the worst. The book is divided into chapters, and the heading sets the tone for the chapter. Tim Gunn has led a life of hard work but filled with such a quality of fun and good times. He is well respected and always well dressed. He is a handsome man and has the air and tone of someone who would be such a good friend.

    Tim said in a recent interview for the 'Daily Beast' "It's easier to ask forgiveness than permission. In the fashion industry and the entertainment industry, there's a class system. I find it offensive. ... If one were to sit with me in a quiet little bistro somewhere, one would get these stories out of me pretty quickly. It's not as though I needed a sodium pentathol and a glass of room-temp gin to do it." His book is the quiet little bistro, and we have heard the stories. The dirt gets all the attention, but Tim Gunn's life and advice is the real book. As Tim Gunn frequently says 'Carry On'.

    Highly Recommended. prisrob 09-07-10

    Tim Gunn: A Guide to Quality, Taste and Style (Tim Gunn's Guide to Style)

    92Y - Tim Gunn in Conversation with Budd Mishkin (March 11, 2008)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Tim Gunn is The Real Deal, September 10, 2010
    Gunn's Golden Rules: Life's Little Lessons for Making It Work is a real jewel. For those of you who have seen Tim Gunn on Project Runaway, on talk shows like Bonnie Hunt or in other venues, his voice comes out strongly in the book. Gunn radiates warmth and a genuine spirit--seemingly an oxymoron in the cut-throat fashion world.

    Which just proves that nice guys can finish first--that you need not be nasty, mean or impolite to climb to the top in any profession. With 18 rules, this book shows you how you can succeed in life--while being nice.

    Gunn doesn't believe in luck to succeed--he believes in hard work, skill, dedication and creatively. One of his phrases that he uses on Project Runaway in in life is: "Make it work". He says: "You should use what you have on hand to transform your situation." In other words, if you wait until everything is perfect before proceeding, it ain't gonna happen!

    He believes in politeness and in being kind to others. This book, he writes, is a "manifesto for kindness, generosity and integrity."

    What I like about this book most is that, unlike so many recently published, Gunn emphasizes hard work, perseverance and creatively to reach goals--not magical thinking. Obviously, not all of us will reach the level of success that Gunn has. Bit the book is motivational, fun (the dishing--delightful!) and a guide to good living.

    I also like the fact that he tells us that the world owes us nothing. There are far too many people who feel, for whatever reason, that they are entitled. Gunn does NOT like these people....These are usually the same people who are rude to waiters and other people (something Gunn rails against. Yes! I used to wait tables and couldn't stand people who were rude just because.)

    Highly recommend.

    While this is not a fashion/lifestyle book, you may be interested in it because you are a fan of Tim Gunn. If so, I recommend

    Tim Gunn: A Guide to Quality, Taste and Style. As an interior designer, I would also like to recommend Harmonious Environment to add some style and beauty to your home!

    Love the book!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Why I really enjoyed this book, September 10, 2010
    As stated in the product summary, this is book is part memoir, part observations about life.

    I am not a big TV watcher, but I got hooked on watching Project Runway around 5 years ago. Part of the reason was Tim Gunn. There is something so fundamentally decent and kind about that man, and you cannot help but feel affection towards him.

    I am usually a fiction reader, but I picked up this book and started reading it and couldn't put it down. It's not simply clever commentary on fashion and etiquette but also replete with Tim's observations about such subjects as varied as child rearing, schooling, and therapy.

    And did I mention it's laugh-out-loud funny? I must've woke my husband up a dozen times with my outbursts. One of the parts that really had me cackling were Tim's descriptions of eating (from foreign foods that have animals that are still alive and crawl off your plate) to the topic of vegetarianism.

    If you are a fan of Tim Gunn, I don't have to sell you on this book - you'll probably be interested in reading it. And yes, he does dish on some of the designers as well as the judges. But I do believe that anyone could benefit from reading this - his decency, his honestly, and his integrity shine through every page. For those of you who are familiar with Tim Gunn, and for those of you who aren't, here's just a brief quote from the book that so well catches his wit and personality:

    "I hold doors open for women, and I also hold them for men. When I'm at Macy's, I don't let the door slam behind me when I walk through. It has nothing to do with gender. I would hold a door open for anyone.

    Would I hold the door for a dog? Okay, may not, because a dog shouldn't be at Macy's."


    4-0 out of 5 stars Golden Rules Never Out of Style, September 10, 2010

    I picked up Gunn's Golden Rules: Life's Lessons for Making It Work as a gift for a friend who is a big fan of Project Runway, the show on which author Tim Gunn serves as a mentor. I've only seen an episode or two of the show myself, but when I started thumbing through the book before wrapping it up, I ended up sitting down and reading the whole thing. Gunn and his collaborator Ada Calhoun have penned an eminently readable and very entertaining book outlining Gunn's rules for living a life of integrity.

    Gunn argues that those rules - working hard, treating others with respect, knowing when to speak up and when to keep your mouth shut, etc. - are not now and never will be out of fashion. Into his rules, Gunn has woven a number of great anecdotes centering around Project Runway and around some well known names in the fashion and entertainment industry, helping to keep the overall tone of the book light and amusing.

    Gunn's Golden Rules: Life's Lessons for Making It Work isn't the type of book I usually read - fiction is more my thing - but I found it both a lot of fun and nicely inspiring. Even though I wasn't familiar with Gunn before reading this, after finishing, I felt I had come to understand the essence of the man and to admire the manners and methods that guide his life. It was nice to read something from someone with whom I apparently share a good many values and who can eloquently communicate them without sounding the least bit preachy!


    5-0 out of 5 stars Would that I were more like him, September 24, 2010
    Tim Gunn is, from start to finish, from his marrow to his crisply pressed blazer, a gentleman of the first order. Here's to a man who sets a higher standard, yet helps us see that we are able to achieve them.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Some interesting parts, but.., November 30, 2010
    I loved his first book, and still read it from time to time. This book however was a bit confusing, as a chapter's moral wouldn't necessarily stay on track, he would go off on tangents. It also seemed more like ranting and raving about the rudeness of certain people and even people in general. Which I think could be summed up in one chapter--yet each chapter seemed to end up in the same place as the chapter before, which is that people can be rude and obnoxious and how much better it is to be nice. Sort of like having road rage in print. The sort of things we say to ourselves every day when we come across nasty people. A whole book filled with just this sentiment--it was a bit random and a bit much. I still love Tim Gunn and will surely buy his next book if he writes another. Maybe better editing and more organization to the chapters and a distinct message in each chapter would be better. Still, an entertaining read in many places, with a little juicy gossip tossed in.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Gunn is Fun, September 16, 2010
    I downloaded a sample of this book on my Kindle, and had to buy the whole book right away. It's a charming read that's almost like spending an evening with Tim. I didn't buy it to read his golden rules so much as I did just because I like Tim Gunn so darn much and wanted to see what he had to say. I'm glad I did--what an enjoyable read! Even if you care not a whit about fashion, you will like spending time with Tim Gunn.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Made it Work, October 25, 2010
    Tim Gunn's new book was enjoyable, funny & really quite good. There was something to learn in every chapter.
    i have always found him to be a sweet and gentle man. He made this book work just fine.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Good Manners by Tim., October 4, 2010
    Love the Tim Gunn. he is such a nice man, just reading the book made me feel better about myself. Plus, he makes a lot of valid points about behavior and manners.

    5-0 out of 5 stars WWTGD?, September 26, 2010
    What Would Tim Gunn Do? You'll know the answer to that after reading this! Tim Gunn has put together a highly readable book that is all at once an autobiography, a plea for better manners, and a gossipy little tell-all that will have you laughing aloud at times. New York fashion icons; Project Runway behind the scenes; popular celebrities; even J. Edgar Hoover get mentioned. But, Tim's own personal story is probably the most compelling reason of all to read the book.

    A fun, intelligent, and at times painfully honest book. I wasn't prepared to like it as much as I did. An inspiring read. ... Read more

    5. How To Win Friends and Influence People
    by Dale Carnegie
    Hardcover (2009-11-03)
    list price: $25.00 -- our price: $16.50
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 1439167346
    Publisher: Simon & Schuster
    Sales Rank: 525
    Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    How to Win Friends and Influence People is the first, and still the finest, book of its kind. One of the best-known motivational books in history, Dale Carnegie's groundbreaking work has sold millions of copies, has been translated into almost every known written language, and has helped countless people succeed in both their business and personal lives.

    First published in 1937, Carnegie's advice has remained relevant for generations because he addresses timeless questions about the fine art of getting along with people: How can you make people like you instantly? How can you persuade people to agree with you? How can you speak frankly to people without giving offense? The ability to read others and successfully navigate any social situation is critically important to those who want to get a job, keep a job, or simply expand their social network.

    The core principles of this book, originally written as a practical, working handbook on human relations, are proven effective. Carnegie explains the fundamentals of handling people with a positive approach; how to make people like you and want to help you; how to win people to your way of thinking without conflict; and how to be the kind of leader who inspires quality work, increased productivity, and high morale.

    As Carnegie explains, the majority of our success in life depends on our ability to communicate and manage personal relationships effectively, whether at home or at work. How to Win Friends and Influence People will help you discover and develop the people skills you need to live well and prosper. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Wonder if he knew people would be reading this 75 years later
    I doubt it, but when you tap into fundamental aspects of human nature in a way that helps people that's what happens. You've probably heard about this book, as it's one of those titles that have become part of the cultural lexicon (like CATCH-22). Written in 1936, it is based on courses in public speaking that had been taught in adult education courses by Dale Carnegie since 1912 (and to put to rest a popular assumption, he was no relation to the magnate Andrew Carnegie). It is an unusual little book, written in a highly personalized, colloquial style that is reminiscent of a great lecture. This book was designed with professionals in mind, and designed to help professional people do better in business by helping them make social contacts and improve their speaking skills. It was also written with a certain...earnestness in mind. Carnegie was a big believer in sincerity when it came to dealing with other people.

    The book has six major sections. The core principles of each section are outlined below:

    Fundamental Techniques in Handling People: Don't criticize, condemn, or complain. Give honest and sincere appreciation. Arouse in the other person an eager want.

    Six Ways to Make People Like You: Become genuinely interested in other people. Smile. Be a good listener, etc. etc.

    Twelve Ways to Win People to Your Way of Thinking: Avoid arguments. Show respect for the other person's opinions. If you're wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically. etc. etc.

    Be a Leader / How to Change People Without Giving Offense or Arousing Resentment: Begin with praise and honest appreciation. Talk about your own mistakes first. etc. etc.

    Emotional Intelligence 2.0 is another book you'll likely want to read. It's the only modern book I've come across that addresses dealing with people this effectively.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The In's and Out's of Human Nature
    A classic (originally published in the 30's) and a must-have, this timeless piece of work can help just about anybody get along better with others and win them over to their way of thinking. Don't have a lot of time to spare? Don't worry. The book is divided into short sections, each one devoted to a particular principle that is well illustrated with many practical examples. In this way, you can read a chapter quickly, stop and do other things you have to do if necessary, and get back to the book when you have time- all without losing continuity.

    Thoroughly entertaining by using fun and interesting examples, I don't think many readers will regret checking this one out and I like to think of this book as a kind of Human Relations 101 of sorts. Also recommend The Sixty-Second Motivator for further reading on motivational principles.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Timeless People Skills
    This book is indeed potentially life changing, as so many of the reviews have stated. It continues to speak volumes into my daily interactions with people even though I listened to it nearly four years ago.

    I have found that following its advice does not make me phony or narcissistic - rather just the opposite (I suppose you can choose to try to pretend to care about people, but people are wiser than that). The book promotes understanding others' behavior and could have the very positive effect of reducing day-to-day conflict. Your blood pressure could lower and relationships flourish. It certainly has had this effect in my life.

    And the(at times)dated language? Classic!

    I recommend it highly!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Common sense advice, but beware the unwritten chapter
    I won't waste your time with a rundown of what "How to Win Friends and Influence People" is about. With over 400 reviews on Amazon, with over 15 million copies sold, and with a very self-explanatory title, I think you all get it. For the rare person who may not know what this book is about, here's a succinct description: in 1930s vernacular prose, Dale Carnegie explains that by appealing to the other person's highest ideals, remembering the other person's name, letting the other person do most of the talking, speaking in terms of the other person's interests, allowing the other to save face, by "throwing down a challenge," etc., you can make a friend out of just about anyone.

    The advice is largely sound, but I think the reader should keep in mind the context within which this book was written. "How to Win Friends and Influence People" was written in the 1930's and intended primarily as a companion book to Dale Carnegie's classes on how to be a good salesman. In other words, these techniques work very well in the context of sales and public relations, i.e., in relationships that are not expected to be deep and/or long-lasting. I wouldn't recommend using these techniques on close personal friends. Doing so may make a person come across as a bit "plastic."

    Also, there is one major point that I think needs to be remembered, but unfortunately is nowhere to be found in "How to Win Friends and Influence People." During my research of Dale Carnegie's techniques, I came across what I believe may be the only biography available about him: Dale Carnegie: The Man Who Influenced Millions by Giles Kemp and Edward Claflin. This book reveals many interesting things, such as the fact that Dale Carnegie grew up poor; he lost part of his left index finger when he was a child; he often broke many of the tenets set forth in this book, often forgetting others' names, often arguing with others, etc. But what I found most interesting was that the last chapter of "How to Win Friends" was to describe those individuals with whom none of Dale Carnegie's techniques work. In this unpublished chapter, Carnegie wrote that there were some people with whom it was impossible to get along. You either needed to divorce such people, "knock them down," or sue them in court.

    Why is that chapter absent from this book, you ask? Well, Dale Carnegie was in the middle of writing this chapter when he was offered a trip to Europe, and rather than complete this last chapter he decided to take the trip. The uncompleted book was sent off to publishers, and Carnegie shipped off to Europe.

    Giles Kemp and Edward Claflin say that given the optimistic tone of the rest of "How to Win Friends," the European trip was perhaps the better choice. Reconciling the the unwritten chapter with the rest of this optimistic book would've been nearly impossible, they say.

    Anyway, I think that this unpublished chapter is important to keep in mind. I had to learn the hard way that the unpublished chapter is very true. There are some people with whom it is impossible to get along. When you meet up with such people, and believe me you will, don't think that you've failed the Carnegie techniques. Instead, remind yourself that you are experiencing exactly what Carnegie describes in that pragmatic, unpublished chapter. And then quickly move on to the nicer people!

    Andrew Olivo

    5-0 out of 5 stars This book is endlessly simple and deceptively complex
    It was facinating to read the other reviews of this book. I can't help but be struck by how simple minded many of the negative comments about the book are. What they don't understand is that the vast majority of people are motivated by the desire to be appreciated. Because we are all so consumed with our own desire to be appreciated we often miss that elementry fact. The principles of this book are simple, but their implications are complex. Therefore, its occasional simplicity could never deminish its greatness. It seems to me that those who hold negative comments about this book felt as though they were being tricked. Remember, Dale teaches that we should communicate "honest, sincere" appreciation and admiration of others. Phoney is phoney whether it is in 1937 or 1997. Dale would never advocate the use of untruths in winning friends. People are not stupid, simply naturally motivated a few common factors. Some readers became defensive believing that they are to smart to fall for these techniques. But, you see, they are caught up in their own sense of selfworth, their own sense of importance. What a shame that the brilliance of the book was lost on them. Other readers had the ability to recognize that they were also motivated by a desire to be appreciated. Those are the readers who have changed the way they see human interaction. Man is a complex animal filled with instinct and the ability to reason. There are certain situations that cause the vast majority of people to react in the same manner- this is instinct. A perfect example is a smile from another. Your first impression of that person is that he is friendly. This thought is involuntary. That fact that we all respond positively to a smile does not mean that we are being tricked. We are simply receiving the nourishment that we crave. Still don't believe me. Imagine this situation honestly. You have always believed that Tom from work is an ass. But yesterday you had a conversation with you best friend from work when the subject of Tom came up. Your friend says to you, "Well, I don't know what you've done to Tom to make him think you are so great, but earlier today he told me that you are the most valuable employee in the company and that your integrity as a human being is unmatched". What do you think about Tom now? You can't help but to like him can you? I would like him. Why? My new openion of him is involuntary. I think I am important and deserving of recognition just like every other human being on the planet, and he gave me what I craved just like every other human being, honest sincere appreciation. If you liked the book, read it again. If you didn't like it, read it again. Otherwise, you will be doomed to wallow in your own ignorance of human relations forever.

    Aaron J. Ruckman

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Classic For Success
    Dale Carnegie had made motivation into an art. Moreover, he had made his form of motivation into an American institution. Find out how an average person can achieve much through the right forms of inspiration, perspiration, and influence. In How to Win Friends and Influence People, you learn about the human factor of success and how principles applied almost 70 years ago, still speak true today.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Masterpiece on the Subject of People Skills
    Man is a social being - unless one chooses the way of the recluse or hermit, he will inevitably have to interact with people. Strangely, for most people who never encounter this book, they miss out on one of the most important keys to achieving happines and prosperity in Life.

    It's been proven that success in any field is related MORE to "people skills" than to mere "technical know-how". And, NO-ONE has put together the principles by which these skills can be acquired better than Dale Carnegie. ... Read more

    6. I Do, Now What?: Secrets, Stories, and Advice from a Madly-in-Love Couple
    by Giuliana Rancic, Bill Rancic
    Hardcover (2010-09-28)
    list price: $25.00 -- our price: $15.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0345524993
    Publisher: Ballantine Books
    Sales Rank: 648
    Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    Five million viewers tuned in to The Style Network for Giuliana DePandi and Bill Rancic’s fairy tale wedding in Italy, as the passions, tears, and champagne flowed. But what happened once the honeymoon was over? After all, she’s been stationed in Los Angeles as one of E! Entertainment’s most popular personalities, and he’s kept his home in Chicago, where this handsome winner of The Apprentice has been busy running an empire of his own. How, we’ve wondered, is this marriage really working out?

    With all the funny, frank, and characteristically down-to-earth personality that fans of their hit reality show, Giuliana & Bill, have come to adore, this glamorous couple takes you behind the scenes of their real-life marriage. Like all newlyweds, they’ve faced the big issues that wedlock manages to invite, including money (to merge or not?), household chores (she’s disorganized, he’s a neat freak), arguments (without staying mad), and trying to have a baby (it’s not as easy as they thought!). Sharing their newfound and sometimes hard-won insights, they offer suggestions on such topics as communication, giving and receiving support, trust and jealousy, quality time, friends and in-laws, fighting fair, and sex and romance.

    A must-read for newly married couples, or those about to take the plunge, or anyone who wants to know the secrets of everlasting love, I Do, Now What? is an upbeat real-world resource for the most ambitious journey of a couple’s life: marriage!
    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars I Do, Now What? They are madly in love and so I am I...with this book!
    I'd like to preface this with the fact that I've never really been a fan of either celebs here. I mean, I don't have anything against them, I just am not one to get wrapped up in the whole Celeb culture. However, my best friend lives and dies for this stuff, and so when she heard that Bill and Guiliana were doing a reading at Borders in Chicago, she dragged me along. Turns out, I actually enjoyed them. They are an adorable couple and seemed really in love. I skimmed the book my friend bought when we first got there- and it had a great "voice" to it and it made me laugh, so on my way out I picked up a copy for myself. I went home and read it cover to cover. I couldn't put it down. How did I get sucked in like that? Ha! They are such great writers and I love the humor and stories that they used along the way that made it such an enjoyable read. It gives you an intimate look into their lives and makes the reader feel like when they are done the book, like they know the couple and would totally want to be friends with them out in the real world.

    5-0 out of 5 stars How can you not love these two!
    Loved the book and the style in which it was written. After reading this book you feel like you know Jiuliana and Bill. Was amazed that they shared so much. Couldn't wait to pick it up everyday and didn't want to put it down when I did! It was a very fast read and hope that there is a second one.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Refreshing and witty
    As a newly married 30 something in today's self-centered, easily divorced society, I admire and appreciate G and B's traditional and earnest approach at marriage. This book is a candid read of real issues that all married couples face. This book had me listening and laughing to their insight and challenges but also made me think about how it can relate to my own marriage. Refreshing to hear honesty from a Hollywood couple.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Love it!
    I love Guiliana and Bill so I had to get this. It's a great book and truly I think they have what will make their marriage work. They both seem to have the same values (which is HUGE - HUGE - HUGE!), complete trust and love for each other. They just both seem they are on the same page. A very fun, easy read and very insightful! I think if more couples took G&B's strategies to heart, I think the divorce rate would drop! If only I could get my husband to read it! Thanks G&B!!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars A fine account, recommended for any general lending library
    I DO, NOW WHAT? SECRETS, STORIES AND ADVICE FROM A MADLY-IN-LOVE COUPLE provides a real-life romance and its aftermath. If it sounds familiar, the couple was on the Style Channel for their Italian wedding: this picks up on the aftermath, presenting their frank assessment of marriage. The third season of 'Giuliana & Bill' coincides with this book's publication and probes secrets behind their marriage success in this fine account, recommended for any general lending library.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic, funny, and insightful read!
    I'm really surprised at ANY negative reviews of this book. I laughed from start to finish. This book truly captures Bill and Giuliana's personalities. They teach amazing and important lessons about relationships and marriages by telling anecdotes from their own experience. I related so much to so many of the things they shared in my own relationship, I've giving this to my boyfriend to read now that I'm finished with it. A fantastic book!!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book...
    Love the way the book was written like an interview. As a couple who have been married for six years; my husband and I definitely look up to these two- they are real, down-to-earth and it's wonderful they decided to share their life experiences with all of us. It's so refreshing that there are still couples out there that love, respect and admire each other. Thanks G & B for giving us a peek into your world; and for sharing that marriages take time, effort and nurturing to truly blossom. The both of you are so inspiring!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Really enjoyable read
    Got the book after catching the TV series. Quick read. They come off as funny, sincere and with something to share. They are a rare combination of a public couple with a solid private marriage - now not so totally private. The fact the Giuliana changed her professional name to Rancic says so much about their commitment to each other.

    5-0 out of 5 stars RANCIC REVIEW
    Loved the combined thinkings of the Rancic's in their new book. I found it to be honest, funny & hopeful for those of us that struggle in relationships from time to time. I have to say as a female and a BIG Apprentice fan...I have been a fan of Bill for a long time and reading his excerts on how he keeps the romance alive, how he is about his marriage/family and the priority of these in his life and most of all how he truley cares, loves and adores his wife.. may I just say "he should be cloned." Or start giving seminars to men on his methods of whooing a female and what he has found to work...there's alot of men out there that could use some gentle reminders. Loved the book...have suggested it to many...most of all my finacee'! Looking forward to the next installments. ... Read more

    7. How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk
    by Adele Faber, Elaine Mazlish
    list price: $15.99 -- our price: $10.87
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0380811960
    Publisher: Harper Paperbacks
    Sales Rank: 721
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    You Can Stop Fighting With Your Children

    Here is the bestselling book that will give you the know-how you need to be more effective with your children--and more supportive of yourself. Enthusiastically praised by parents and professionals around the world, the down-to-earth, respectful approach of Faber and Mazlish makes relationships with children of all ages less stressful and more rewarding. Now, in this Twentieth Anniversary Edition, these award-winning experts share their latest insights and suggestions based upon feedback they've received over the years.

    Their methods of communication-illustrated with delightful cartoons showing the skills in action-offer innovative ways to solve common problems. You'll learn how to:

    • Cope with your child's negative feelings-frustration, disappointment, anger, etc.

    • Express your anger without being hurtful

    • Engage your child's willing cooperation

    • Set firm limits and still maintain goodwill

    • Use alternatives to punishment

    • Resolve family conflicts peacefully

    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Not Just Kids! How to talk to Anybody!, March 28, 1998
    A therapist recommended this book to me when my son was 4 years old and I was going though a difficult divorce. I read the book and actually photocopied the basic ideas of each chapter and taped them to the refrigerator for easy reference. The ideas are simple and effective. They build self-esteem and keep the avenues of communication open between parent and child. My son is now almost 18, and we still have a terrific relationship. I've been following the practices in this book for 14 years and I can tell you it has made all the difference. Wherever my son goes, I hear from people who tell me how wonderful he is, how well-mannered, pleasant and charming. They all want to know what ever did I do to raise him this way. I tell them about this book. The more I move through life and the business world, however, I am struck how the same techniques enhance communication between adults in all aspects of life. This book should also be listed in the Business/Management section. It says all the same things the high-priced consultants say -- treat people with respect, do not deny their emotions, state the facts (only) and shut up and listen. This book also talks about giving praise and recognition, which makes it another reason to use it in real life, inside the family AND outside in the "real" world.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Alternatives to Yelling, Nagging, Threatening, Criticizing, September 4, 2002
    As a preschool teacher and parent, I found this book to be the major influence in forming my communication style with children. In fact, this book has given me the skills to communicate more effectively with everyone... my friends, my husband, my boss, and even my mother-in-law! When I changed my approach in how I spoke to them, they often changed their behavior. The logical, respectful strategies really work! My only criticism is that the format of the chapters does not always fascilitate quick 're-read' referral. For example, when I recently wanted to quickly look up a whining, or biting, or mealtime strategy for three of my preschoolers, I became frustrated and confused as to where in the book I had seen the information. These topics were not listed in the index and I began to flip through the pages trying to find the stories and suggestions that I thought I remembered seeing somewhere. Therefore, I would also like to recommend another wonderful new book with the very same philosophy that is organized differently...for quick use on the spot for very busy parents. THE POCKET PARENT is literally a pocket-sized A-Z guide exclusively written for parents and teacher of preschoolers (2's, 3's, 4's, & 5's). It is loaded with hundreds of easy to find quick-read bullet answers (called 'sanity savers') to 40 common behavior problems of 2- to 5-year-olds. I recommend these two books for every mom and dad with a 2- to 5-year-old. Both books are permissive with feelings, but strict with behavior while preserving the dignity of both parent and child. Both books are full of humor and compassion from authors that have 'been there,' too. For help on the spot as well as long term understanding ...keep both books handy!

    5-0 out of 5 stars An Essential Text Which Belongs on EVERY Parent's Shelf, April 1, 2001
    If I could entice every new parent to read just one book, this would be it. Thousands of children's lives have been improved, and in some cases transformed, as a direct result of their parents reading this book and practicing its kid-tested, nonpunitive approaches to discipline. The authors have little time for abstract theorizing, concerning themselves with down to earth practical issues of parenting, using sensitivity, empathy, communication skills, and humor. This book is crammed with invaluable suggestions, techniques and ideas for parents committed to raising great kids without resorting to discredited, harmful, pain-and-fear-based methods of the past.

    This book is in its twentieth edition for a reason: these methods WORK. I personally know a mother who formerly used the harsh, punitive methods of James Dobson, only to find that her problems with her daughter became worse and worse over time rather than better. After she read "How To Talk So Kids Will Listen And Listen So Kids Will Talk" and put its suggestions into practice, she literally threw Dobson's volume into the trash. And after a year and a half, she told me her relationship with her daughter had improved so much that she'd previously had no idea that it COULD be that good. The fact that the problems she'd been having had vanished now seemed almost an afterthough compared to the deepening of their parent-child bond. Their communication had improved profoundly, opening up previously unguessed levels of richness in their relationship. "She is such a terrific kid," my friend once told me, and with genuine incredulity added, "I can't believe I actually used to HIT her!!"

    Another acquaintance of mine, who is raising two great kids using nonpunitive methods of the sort Faber and Mazlish recommend, summarized her entire philosophy in just one sentence: "I don't want obedient children, I want COOPERATIVE children!" I think the great majority of parents, if they thought about it, would realize that this is what they too would prefer. Faber and Mazlish show the way.

    This book appears at first glance to be a collection of nonpunitive discipline techniques, but it is actually much more: a whole new way of thinking about the parent-child relationship which transcends the permissiveness vs strictness continuum with an approach to parenting based on neither punishments nor rewards. Authoritarian methods use coercion to make the child lose and the parent win, while total permissiveness makes the parent lose and the child win. Faber and Mazlish's methods, on the other hand, show the way towards families in which everybody wins.

    Christopher Dugan

    5-0 out of 5 stars My four children and I are much happier now!, February 1, 2006
    My husband bought this book when our oldest child was 10. We realized we weren't communicating well and were frightened that we would lose our relationship altogether when she hit her teenage years. Well, the book was a godsend. The authors basically teach you how to treat your child like a capable and worthy person, when you may be treating them as irresponsible, unimportant, or unlikeable. They first convince you to stop criticizing your children for what they think or feel, and to acknowledge how they might be feeling when they tell things to you. I know this sounds touchy-feely, but acknowledging feelings doesn't mean giving your kids any leeway in their behavior. For example, instead of saying "You shouldn't be mad at your brother, he's only three!" you say "I can see that it makes you angry when he messes up your things. But yelling is not allowed in our house." or, "He's too young to understand how special those are to you, so how can we keep your things safe?" You let your child know you are paying attention to how they feel, BEFORE you focus on solving the problem.
    The second thing they emphasize is to make correcting behavior about the behavior, and not about the child. Instead of "Get your homework! You always forget things!" you just say, "Homework needs to go to school with you."
    One thing we had a problem with at first is that the authors do not support time-outs. We had always been big believers in consequences for behavior, and had relatively well-behaved children with the time-out method. Well, we gave it a try, and were amazed. We found that we were fully able to correct our children's behaviors without time-out at all. And in fact, they were happier and less disobedient in general when they weren't constantly being sent away from the family in disgrace. We haven't even been tempted to put anyone in time-out for almost a year. Most surprising, our 3-year-old COMPLETELY stopped throwing tantrums within about two days of our stopping time-outs. It was a dramatic change for a child who had always been a little difficult to handle.
    Our oldest was slower to respond (age has a lot to do with it, I think) and we found it much harder to implement changes for her. It was difficult to stop lecturing and blaming her. But we have, and we have a fantastic relationship! Other parents of kids the same age are surprised how well we communicate and how fun and friendly our relationship is. We still have the teen years to get through, but I'm much more confident they will be a success, as we know how to treat her like a capable, loveable, valuable person.
    Buy this book. End of story.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A must for all parents, December 9, 1999
    I first heard Adele Faber talk at a college near my home when I was pregnant with my first child. Everything she said made such sense! She really struck a chord with me. I immediately went out and bought this book, and read it cover to cover. I parent by the principals of this book, and I'm convinced my child is socially and emotionally happier and healthier because of it. I re-read it at least once a year, and always give it as a gift to new parents. This book is the "holy grail" of parenting, and anyone who influences a child's life, including teachers, babysitters, etc. should read this book.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good book, but not as thorough as should be, May 22, 2001
    I just read this book and -- though it it's right on the money in its attitude towards childrearing -- it doesn't describe the mechanics of how the "listening" and "talking" skills work as well as Thomas Gordon's Parent Effectiveness Training (P.E.T.). P.E.T. has a chapter called How to Listen so Children Will Talk and another called How to Talk so Children Will Listen. I wonder how the autors of this book got away with borrowing the title for their book straight out of some chapters in another (the original P.E.T. was published years before -- the one at stores now is a new edition).

    Lest it sound like I'm slamming this book, truth is it's not a bad read at all. But for an in-depth explanation of how these skills can be put to daily use, I'd go for P.E.T. Better yet, read both.

    Even better yet, first read Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman to get an idea WHY these skills are so important to a child's development, then follow it up with P.E.T. and this book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars This book works wonders even for kids who can't talk., July 25, 1999
    I am a psychologist and mother, with a 6 year old autistic son. I first read this book when he was about 18 months old, and I waited patiently and eagerly for him to begin talking. He didn't... and didn't... and didn't... because one of the hallmarks of autism is a language delay. It would be another 3 years before I really knew what his voice sounded like. Nonetheless, this book was a godsend for us, because, really, it teaches parents how to read and respond to their children's emotions, no matter what modality they use to communicate them. And what my child needed more than anything else was to have someone who could understand how he was feeling, and give words to those feelings, because he could not. "How to Talk So Kids Will Listen" gave me the tools to hear him and help him, even though he was not talking.

    Now, at age 6, he is talking a lot, reading even more, and is a happy, joyful, confident child, far from the stereotype of his disability. I believe that much of his positive emotion and self-esteem comes from knowing that his feelings are understood and respected, despite the communication barriers we face. Those are gifts I was able to give him because of the strategies I learned from "How to Talk..." We still have a long road to travel, but so does every parent. But rest assured, ALL of Faber and Mazlish's books will be making the journey with us.

    5-0 out of 5 stars I've seen changes for the better so quickly, May 29, 2003
    It's only a few weeks and my daughter has responded so positively to this method of parenting.

    Maybe I shouldn't be so quick to judge since it's been such a short time, but I'm just so excited I feel like I found a pot of gold.

    It's not like my daughter was such a problem child before. She is almost five. She has been a little on the hyper side since she was born. As she has gotten older it has been getting more and more difficult to get her to cooperate, participate, or communicate at home or in preschool. I was desparate to find something that might reverse the trend before it became a real problem.

    Just as one example... It has always been difficult to get her to clean up after herself. She loves to use scissors and she makes a mess with scraps of paper ending up all over the house and in the baby's mouth. Yesterday, I watched as she cut out a circle from a piece of paper. She put the paper with the hole in it on the table and brought the circle to me to look at. After I admired the circle I said "I noticed you put the piece of paper you cut this from on the table. That was very tidy of you." She smiled and ran back to the table. She noticed there were a few pieces of paper on the floor she had dropped previous to this. She picked them up and put them on the table. She's never done that before without me telling her and usually having to repeat myself over and over! She didn't even look back at me to see if I was watching.

    In general she seems more relaxed (i.e. not as hyper), happier, and much more confident. I even noticed this morning when I took her to preschool she at once ran over to play with her friends, rather than hanging back shyly and waiting for one of them to come to her like she always has in the past. That was always painful for me to watch. Today, it was so beautiful, I had a lump in my throat.

    It's not that I think that my parenting style before this was so terrible. For example I always tried to be understanding before, but this book explained to me that some things I did that I thought were understanding were actually not.

    For example, sometimes my daughter doesn't like some clothes in her closet, even if she helped me pick it out. In the past, I'd say sweetly "You don't like it? It's such a pretty dress. You told me you liked it before. That's why I bought it for you. I don't understand. Tell me why don't you like it now?" I thought I was being very undertanding because I would say it in a sweet pleasant voice and give her the opportunity to explain her side to me. But the end result was always that she would become agitated and she wouldn't wear the dress that day and not for a long time until she forgot she told me she didn't like it. Now I say something like "Oh, you've decided you don't like it anymore. Do you remember when you helped me pick it out? You liked it then, but I see you've changed your mind. Well, I still like it. I think it is so pretty. Maybe you'll change your mind again one day and you'll like it again. So I'll just put it back in the closet just in case." Sometimes the very next day she declares to me that she has changed her mind and she wants to wear the dress that day.

    Similarly, I always tried to praise whenever I caught her doing something well, but this book has taught me more effective ways to praise and how not to criticize (which I realize only now how much I was doing).

    I'm so excited, I went out and bought a few other books that explain this type of parenting, like "Parent Effectiveness Training." I haven't read them yet, but when I do, I'll try to write a review.

    4-0 out of 5 stars True to it's title, September 1, 2001
    I thought this book might be about how to use praise and language to avoid facing discipline issues with children but it is not like that at all. It teaches parents to be authorative and send the right messages without micro managing their children. The suggested changes are fairly straight forward and common sense, but may require some practice. Fortunately thare are many well illustrated examples and practical exercises to reinforce these ideas. This book stictly sticks to the topic of comunication and establishing cooperation which makes it an excellent supplement to any parents existing parenting style. Teaches mutual respect without surrendering parental authourity. A very good read.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A real how-to resource, May 7, 2005
    As the mother of a 4 year old and trying 3 year old I had reached the absolute boiling point. At night as I replayed the day's events, I realized that all I had done was scold and yell all day. It was exhausting and depressing. I know better than that, but somehow I just couldn't figure out how to 'do' better than that. This book is clearly written and very specific in teaching you ways to interact with your child. You can take statements verbatim from the text and use them in real life. My unbearable younger child has been transformed into a sweet, inquisitive child, and I have been transformed into a tolerant, patient mother who ends each day with a smile.
    Perhaps, like me, you're sceptical that any resource (let alone a book) could make such a difference. If you feel as worn down and frustrated as I did when I bought it, what do you have to lose?

    * One note about using the book for reference later. There are 6 pages that have reminder notes with subject headers and bullet points. The book suggests that you copy them and put them where you can see them. I actually did this. I refer to these cheat sheets constantly when I'm looking for the right thing to say or a refresher on a particular concept. ... Read more

    8. What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Speed-Reading People
    by Joe Navarro, Marvin Karlins
    Paperback (2008-04-01)
    list price: $19.99 -- our price: $13.59
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0061438294
    Publisher: Harper Paperbacks
    Sales Rank: 967
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    He says that's his best offer. Is it?

    She says she agrees. Does she?

    The interview went great—or did it?

    He said he'd never do it again. But he did.

    Read this book and send your nonverbal intelligence soaring. Joe Navarro, a former FBI counterintelligence officer and a recognized expert on nonverbal behavior, explains how to "speed-read" people: decode sentiments and behaviors, avoid hidden pitfalls, and look for deceptive behaviors. You'll also learn how your body language can influence what your boss, family, friends, and strangers think of you. You will discover:

    • The ancient survival instincts that drive body language
    • Why the face is the least likely place to gauge a person's true feelings
    • What thumbs, feet, and eyelids reveal about moods and motives
    • The most powerful behaviors that reveal our confidence and true sentiments
    • Simple nonverbals that instantly establish trust
    • Simple nonverbals that instantly communicate authority

    Filled with examples from Navarro's professional experience, this definitive book offers a powerful new way to navigate your world.

    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Advice from a 30 year law enforcement vet- BUY THIS BOOK!, April 15, 2009
    I have been in law enforcement for close to 30 years on a large agency- I am always on the lookout for useful tools of the trade that I can use and pass along to my investigators. This book is great! It is packed with useful information. No, I am not a shill for this book and do not know the author- although I have met many professional law enforcement investigators who have written good books and manuals. I am impressed with the insights and natural techniques contained in this book. I am ordering a copy for all the investigators in my unit, I am that impressed with this book. Sure, there is always something about any book that does not satisfy a reader- but I honestly must say there is little about this book that I didn't like.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Thumbs Up-What does that tell you?, October 11, 2009
    I thought some of the negative reviews were a bit critical of this book. This book lays a solid foundation to reading non verbal actions or "tells". I've read several other books on this subject and thought this was a solid read and I was very happy with my purchase. There is no single book offered that will turn you into an expert over night.

    It is important to realize that reading people is a skill. You don't become great at it over night or an expert right after reading the book. Just like any other skill, you have to practice and work at it. You develop the skill of paying attention and picking up on the little things. Once you are able to do that, you then have to determine what all of those things mean. I'm a single male, small business owner and avid poker player. Being able to read people can be very useful in dating, business and at the poker table.

    One thing that is very interesting is that some actions or "tells" are very common and seem to always mean the same thing. Other actions or "tells" are unique to each person. What may mean one thing for one person, may actually mean the opposite when done by another person. The "magic" of being able to read people is being able to determine what those actions mean for individual people. Sometimes it's not an action at all but it is what people DON'T say or do that can paint you the entire picture.

    In my business, I use my ability to read people to determine whether or not they are being truthful or are uncomfortable with something. If I see them acting in a certain way that makes me believe they are uncomfortable, I go out of my way to explain things to them so that they might be more comfortable with the situation or outcome. In my personal life, I can determine whether or not my friends or family are having a good or bad day and/or might want or need something. This book should be a dating book as well. I can't stand dating. Not many people are very up front and honest about how they feel about another person, especially on a first date. I am not kidding you when I say that there are more non-verbal "tells" on a first date than in any other situation! If you want to know if a woman likes you or not, pay attention to her actions throughout the date. I'm not an expert, but I think I can figure it out in 10 minutes or less! (Good or bad!....ok, mostly bad, lol)

    I enjoy playing poker. I play in home games and I play $1/$2 No Limit Hold Em in the casino poker rooms. This book really is a big help with poker tells. It's helped me make some extraordinary calls and folds. Several times I've stunned the entire table and the dealers with my reads. Just a few things off of the top of my head are, people who've made very strong hands will often tilt their heads while betting or thinking of betting, hold their hands together-touching only at the finger tips, bounce one leg like crazy (happy feet), slide their chips into the pot very slowly or gently or give off a genuine smile. People who have hit the flop also tend to look away right away if they notice they've hit their card(s). Normally people who hit the flop do not stare at the flop. People who are on drawing hands tend to call bets very quickly, seeming to give it no thought what-so-ever. People who have a poor hand or are on a bluff often force a smile (there is a difference if you pay attention!), or purse their lips together, have an increased blink rate, forcefully bet chips into the pot or speak very loudly as they announce "RAISE" or "ALL IN". They are trying to scare you or force you out of the pot. After reading this book, my poker reads went through the roof. I think it is because I was paying attention and putting more effort into it. I noticed another player at my home game would sometimes slide his chips into the pot without saying a word when he was all in. He keeps his chips in a big messy pile throughout the game. But sometimes he would actually take the time to count his chips and stack them neatly into the pot when he moved all in. He takes his time counting his chips and then announces the value amount to the table. When he counts them, he is bluffing. He wants his stack to be known in hopes of scaring off the other opponents. I call him with very weak holdings when he does this and I fold when he slides his chips into the pot without counting them or saying a word. He has no idea he is doing this and I'm not about to say a word! This tell is 100%. I actually saw another player do this in the casino and I made an extraordinary call to win the pot.

    This book is full of good information to use in many situations. It teaches you the basics (and then some), but it is up to you to figure out how to put theory into practice and actually stay focused.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great book, a must read for people wanting to understand the Reasons Behind our body language., November 12, 2008
    Just finished the book this week, and I must say I am quite happy with my purchase! This is a great book that gives a very nice understanding of the limbic part of our brain (A part that reacts without conscious thought) and the reasons behind our body language to understand WHY the brain reacts with these certain resposes in our body language. One of the biggest troubles i'v had with body language is memerising what all the parts mean. But with this understanding of the Limbic brain I can now understand the WHY behind all the parts, and like other reviewers have said, this makes memorising SO MUCH easier as it changed the way I look at Body language.

    For anyone really interested in body language, I would recommend you buy this book which will give you a great base understanding of the science behind our body language And then buy the "Definitive Book Of Body Language" Which in my view is like the "encyclopedia" of body language, These are the Must reads for Body language in my view. The combination of the two is really a knock out punch for a very good foundation in the understanding of Body Language.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Be More Aware of Messages you Send and Receive, August 10, 2008
    This book can not only help you to be more aware of when to probe further about whether what someone says is inconsistent with what they may be feeling, but it also can help you be more aware of the messages you may be sending by your gestures, posture, etc. One of the things I like most about this book is that the author sets the expectation that you won't be able to know the "truth" based only on body language but that awareness of body language will help you to understand when you should be paying attention to other details of your interaction with someone. Anyone who works with people, especially in a customer-facing role, would benefit from reading this book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The BEST Body Language book, September 12, 2009
    This has to be the BEST book on body language available. The author gives you the groundwork for understanding the WHYs and HOWs behind gestures and behavior, which teaches the reader how to decipher body language for himself. He stresses the importance of individuality and the complexity of body language, rather than just giving black and white examples and assigning meaning. This book took the confusion out of reading body language for me. I really, really enjoyed it. I refer back to it often.

    I highly recommend this book as a companion to Gavin De Becker's "The Gift of Fear", and anyone (especially women) who are interested in learning how to protect themselves from potentially dangerous people. I also highly recommend it for child abuse victims in recovery. This is the stuff we really didn't learn growing up, but need to know to protect ourselves in the future.

    Over all GREAT book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Amazing non-fiction, June 15, 2009
    I bought this book with the intention of increasing my advantage in social situations, and it did that in spades. It very clearly separates the pop-psychology that has become popular through certain TV shows and other media, and instead focuses on the scientific reasoning behind many of our subconcious actions while being extremely easy to read and understand. Although it relates heavily to business interactions, the techniques in the book can easily be translated to any social interaction. Recommended for anyone who wants to understand the world around them better, wants to get ahead in social situations, wants to learn about themselves, or any of the above

    3-0 out of 5 stars basic info, May 25, 2009
    i have 11 years exp in corrections and deal with inmates and sfaff daily. this book gives a good basic review of signs to look for. somethings i picked up on and look for, others i did not agree. i have to admit, after reading this book and then seeing navarro's ad for poker face book, i was a bit turned off, doubting his sincerity in this topic. for someone who has no exp in this area, this is a good starter book, dont buy it looking for advanced techs

    4-0 out of 5 stars This guy knows what he's talking about!, September 2, 2009
    This is a very well-written, entertaining, and easy-to-digest book that delivers exactly what it promises. The organization is well thought out and effective. The reason that I give the book four stars instead of five is that I think that it could be easily improved with the addition of short chapter summaries, e.g. bulleted lists of the points made within the chapter.

    Note that the author repeatedly makes a point of reminding you that using body language to identify liars outright is extremely difficult. Instead, you use it to identify subjects/questions which cause discomfort in the person you are talking with, thereby identifying the areas that you need to explore further.

    His observations on the innate "freeze/flight/fight" response of humans are fascinating. He puts into words things that you already sorta "know" subliminally but have never really thought about directly. I found myself able to recall having seen (and done myself) every single behavior he describes, and now I know directly what they mean & what to look for. He includes lots of personal anecdotes, too, which enliven the material.

    Since finishing the book, I've found how readily this information can be put to use. Once I knew what to look for, I just automatically started looking. Curiously, I find myself decoding my own body language as often as that of others! It's amazing how accurate his interpretations of my own body language have been. For me, that has reinforced my perception that he knows what he's talking about. After all, you know exactly how you're feeling when you catch yourself performing some specific gesture or action, so if your feelings match your body language, well voila! Navarro just read your mind.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate Study of Body Language, July 13, 2009
    Former FBI Agent, Joe Navarro, knows what he's talking about & knows what every body is saying, for that matter. This book is the crown jewel of the study of body language, written by a certifiable expert. Anyone who intelligently discusses the limbic part of the brain (a new one on me) isn't to be taken lightly; and for good reason. His expertise is impressive, as are his credentials.

    This book is the definitive book on the subject of body language that I've ever come across. Although it's possible for those devious people with hidden agendas to play a game of deception, sooner or later, with enough observation, they can be read like a book; in fact, this book!

    5-0 out of 5 stars I have never seen such extensive as well as illuminating treatment...also, clear, concise & succinct!, November 29, 2008
    'What Every Body is Saying',
    by Joe Navarro

    If I could recall correctly, my initial introduction to social behavioural patterns of non-verbal communications probably began with Julius Fast's 'Body Language' during the seventies, followed by one of Desmond Morris' well-illustrated books, 'Manwatching: A Field Guide to Human Behaviours', in the late seventies.

    My fascination with the subject grew, particularly from the standpoint of developing a competency in reading people, with the acquisition & reading of Allan Pease's 'Body Language: How to Read Others' Thoughts by Their Gestures', & more specifically, Gerhard Gschwandter's 'Non-Verbal Selling Power' during the eighties.

    I reckon, with the wisdom of hindsight, those were roughly the pivotal books in guiding me to understanding the significance of body language in human interactions.

    Throughout the ensuing years from the eighties, I didn't pursue any newer books on the subject, until very recently when I have come across Joe Navarro's book.

    The author is a former FBI counter-intelligence special agent, which somehow has given the book an iota of authenticity, in contrast to an aura of mystery, about speed-reading people.

    In a nut shell, speed-reading people successfully is essentially learning about the world around us, decoding & determining the meaning of non-verbal communications as manifested through facial expressions, gestures, touching, physical movements, posture, body adornment & even the tone, timbre, & volume of a person's voice - to predict human actions.

    More specifically, it's collecting non-verbal intelligence to assess a person's thought, feelings & intentions, a competency that can be mastered through constant practice & proper training.

    This wonderful book, with clear, concise & succinct writing on the part of the author, has been designed to serve that purpose.

    It starts off in the beginning with the ten commandments for observing & decoding nonverbal communications successfully, followed by an insightful exposition of how our evolutionary triune brain structure contributes to our hardwired responses to the world.

    For me, just understanding the freeze, flight & fight responses as well as an appreciation of the comfort/discomfort & pacifying routines - in reality, these are parts of our very robust survival mechanisms - has facilitated my renewed journey to becoming a better speed-reader of people. The author has discussed these emotional aspects at great length (Chapter II).

    From Chapter III to VII, the author went on to discuss the non-verbals of the feet & legs; the torso, hips, chest & shoulders; the arms; the hands & fingers; & the face, respectively.

    I have never seen such extensive as well as illuminating treatment along the foregoing lines by any of the other authors I have encountered earlier.

    In spite of all the relevant insights & expert advice which the author has openly shared in his book, he has concluded in the end analysis that there is, however, one type of human behaviour that is difficult to read, & that is deception.

    Nevertheless, the author has outlined for readers a dozen of important things to do & valuable points to keep in mind in the course of any interpersonal interactions. Reading them, I come to realise that they all boil down to developing acute observational skills.

    In fact, the first commandment from the author, as outlined in the beginning segment of his book rings very true: be a competent observer of our environment.

    As a case in point, with the author's assertion in the concluding chapter, paying attention to the synchrony between what is being said verbally & non-verbally, between the circumstances of the moment & what the subject is saying, between events & emotions, & even synchrony of time & space can often provide valuable clues to detecting deception.

    Additionally, when we speak, we naturally utilise various part of our body - such as the eyebrows, head, hands, arms, torso, legs & feet to emphasise a point about which we feel deeply or emotionally. Observing such emphasis can also provide valuable tips on detecting deception.

    To end this book review, I like to paraphrase a quote from the author's friend, as a result of the friend's personal experience in navigating the car to an unknown destination (in Coral Gables, Florida), mentioned in the epilogue:

    "Once I knew what to look for & where to look, the signs were obvious & unmistakable. I had no trouble finding my way."

    That reaction also more or less sums up my sentiment about developing mastery in speed-reading people.

    [Reviewed by Lee Say Keng, Knowledge Adventurer & Technology Explorer, November 2008] ... Read more

    9. Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think About Love, Relationships, Intimacy, and Commitment
    by Steve Harvey
    list price: $23.99 -- our price: $16.31
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0061728977
    Publisher: Amistad
    Sales Rank: 633
    Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Steve Harvey, the host of the nationally syndicated Steve Harvey Morning Show, can't count the number of impressive women he's met over the years, whether it's through the "Strawberry Letters" segment of his program or while on tour for his comedy shows. These are women who can run a small business, keep a household with three kids in tiptop shape, and chair a church group all at the same time. Yet when it comes to relationships, they can't figure out what makes men tick. Why? According to Steve it's because they're asking other women for advice when no one but another man can tell them how to find and keep a man. In Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man, Steve lets women inside the mindset of a man and sheds lights on concepts and questions such as:

    —The Ninety Day Rule: Ford requires it of its employees. Should you require it of your man?

    —How to spot a mama's boy and what if anything you can do about it.

    —When to introduce the kids. And what to read into the first interaction between your date and your kids.

    —The five questions every woman should ask a man to determine how serious he is.

    — And more...

    Sometimes funny, sometimes direct, but always truthful, Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man is a book you must read if you want to understand how men think when it comes to relationships.

    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Say what?, August 11, 2009
    What a sad, sad book. I am shocked that it has received so many great reviews.
    The pineapple juice story brought tears to my eyes. What a witch that woman was!
    Other than that, any tears I shed were for the hypocricy, chauvinism, and lack of respect expressed in this book. While I agree that women should be more selective and have more respect for themselves and that men should stand up and take responsibility for their families, I found much of the rest of Steve's conclusions quite disheartening. Why would anyone want a man who won't communicate his feelings, expects his wife to keep the house spotless, and wants her to give up the activities she enjoys? This type of man is appealing? To whom? Married couples should be equal partners, and communication is the most important ingredient.
    The worst idea expressed in the book is that most men will cheat just because they can and never give it a second thought. While I know that many men cheat, I will never believe that any man who truly loves, respects, and is committed to his wife will cheat on her. Period.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Yet another round of "ladies, your'e doing it wrong, adapt", July 16, 2009
    Let's see, circa 1995 we got The Rules, which was the next thing in a long succession of books telling women how they're doing it wrong. The message? "This is how all men think, they're very simple, and you, ladies, must adapt, or you'll be single forever."

    Then we got He's Just Not That Into You (a phrase which the authors of The Rules seem to think they invented, they use it so much on their website)and this was another big revelation, apparently. But at least it was funny.

    Now we've got a man--and a comedian, no less--saying it. "This is what we men are like, and you ladies must adapt."

    It wasn't even that funny. But mercifully short (although repetitive).

    Here's an idea, maybe, ladies, if what you're doing isn't working, you need a better class of man. Maybe one not so simple. Maybe a bit layered. Why should we be the ones who do all the accommodating? Especially since, by doing that, we're going to end up with control freak psychos.

    I was particularly offended by his story about how his wife has given up risky activities that she enjoyed, like scuba diving, because he doesn't know how to do them and so he can't protect her while she's doing them. Because that's just how a real man is, he has to protect his lady. Sad.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Where are my matches?, July 23, 2009
    I have re-named this book "Act Like A Stepford Wife, Think Like A Brainwashed Co-dependent Puppet". It made me puke in my mouth just a little bit while I was reading it. If this is what I have to do to make a man happy, then I'm switching to women!

    2-0 out of 5 stars Hmmmmmmmm., March 13, 2009
    Any woman who reads this book should ask the following question after reading it:

    "Of what value would a relationship like this be to me?"

    There is more to life than sex and having a clean house. Men know that and have many other things in their lives besides women.

    I really began to think like a man when I realized this and cultivated my own interests which include writing, music, philosophy, art and many other things. I can say that in my single life I was smart, independent -- and not particularly lonely, either.

    Now I am married -- I'm glad I got married and wouldn't change my choice. But one of the reasons I married the man that I did was because he did NOT have the same views as Mr. Harvey.

    1-0 out of 5 stars A Terrible Book That Proves Men Are Simple-minded, April 17, 2010
    This terribly-written book has Harvey spouting humorless relational philosophy, such as "men are simple creatures." And he proves that point by writing such a simple-minded book that it's a complete waste of time to read it.

    The book is sexist, stereotyping all men into knuckle-dragging, sports-loving hunters that just need a little sex to keep them happy. The book is addressed to women, telling them to dress better, accept that the guy won't talk much, and give sex more often in order to keep their guy from straying.

    Most offensive is Harvey's constant references to "the Lord" and Jesus, leading people to believe he upholds spirituality, yet he point blank tells people to have sex after 90 days together and accepts a couple living together without being married. He often mentions going to church--didn't he learn anything there?

    He also conveniently fails to mention that he has been married three times. The book would lead you to believe he was married once, to a woman he admittedly slept with and cheated on before she threatened to walk out on him. There is also no real mention of his children. A quick check of his bio online will uncover the truth. If you can't trust a guy writing a book about relationships to come clean about his own relationships, then why read the book?

    There are a couple of valid points, such as the fact that men need respect and loyalty from women. But the lousy writing style and simplistic examples negate any reason to read this book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Boys Shack. Men Build Homes., March 5, 2009
    Author & Book Views On A Healthy Life!

    Book Review: Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think About Love, Relationships, Intimacy, and Commitment (Harper Collins, 2009) by Steve Harvey with Denene Miller

    Veteran comedian Steve Harvey has risen to the pinnacle of the love and relationships world with one book--Act Like a Lady--Think Like A Man (Harper Collins, 2009) with Denene Miller. The son of parents who have been married 46 years, Harvey's book developed out of questions from many women during the course of his show, who simply do not understand the simplicity of men. The purpose of the book: show women how to achieve a solid relationship, whether they're dating, engaged, or married.

    Harvey writes that men focus on three points of extreme interest:

    1. Who they are (their title)
    2. How they get their title (job/career)
    3. And what they achieve (money earned)

    I've been married more than 20 years to my own husband. I must agree with Harvey, that this is true. Men are defined by other men. They look at each other's car/truck, watch, home, signs of success. Until a man is on his way in life, he cannot sit around and discuss his relationship with you. Harvey clarifies this situation quite well.

    Before a relationship progresses too far, Harvey wants every woman to ask her potential man these five questions:

    1. What are your short-term goals?
    2. What are your long-term goals?
    3. What are your views on relationships?
    4. What do you think about me?
    5. How do you feel about me?

    22 years ago, I asked my husband similar questions, including what he thought about children and divorce.

    Harvey includes further great chapters which really open up a man's mind to a woman:

    * "Men Respect Standards--Get Some"
    * "Why Men Cheat"
    * "Mama's Boys"
    * "Sports Fish vs. Keepers--" Example: "A woman who is dressed appropriately--has her goodies reasonably covered, but is still sexy, is a keeper; a woman who is scantily clad and dripping sex is a throwback."
    * "We Need to Talk, And Other Words That Make Men Run For Cover"
    * "How to Get the Ring"

    Harvey offers up front honest advice for women who have been sacrificing themselves in search of the right guy. He extols women to put themselves first and not be afraid of losing the guy. "If a man truly loves you, he's not going anywhere." This reminds me of a friend from long ago who was recently divorced and in search of a new husband. Each fellow dated her a short while and moved on. She didn't know what the problem was. I warned her not to give the milk away for free with the latest guy. "Too late for that!" she stated. He moved on too.

    Near the back of the book, Harvey includes a section for questions you've always wanted answered:

    Example: Do men prefer skinny or thick women?

    Example: Do men like women who cook more than women who don't?

    Example: Do men secretly evaluate whether you'll be a good mother, homemaker, and so on? Answer: Absolutely!

    Likewise women, evaluate a potential mate.

    Writing under the premise that too many women don't understand men, and men get away with way too much, Harvey, as a father, wishes to raise awareness among women, while at the same time forcing men to be honest about their attitude toward the relationship.

    If you're tired of mama's boys, men who won't commit or you're in search of the elusive catch, this book's for you. Harvey shows the reader when to be honest, when to compromise a bit, and when to hold her man to a standard, because "boys shack," but "men build homes."

    5 Stars

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fly in the Barbershop, January 29, 2009
    Women can sit around with our girlfriends talking about how much men don't make sense or how they won't act right, but we oftentimes find better advice by actually asking for advice from our guy friends. The only problem is our guy friends may lie to spare our feelings, but Steve Harvey is not trying to be our friends and he's telling it like it t.i.s. in his new book, "Act Like a Lady: Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think About Love, Relationships, Intimacy, and Commitment."

    Harvey breaks down all of the things that women need to know about men in 15 chapters on relationships--mama's boys, marriage, whether we are the ones for men to sports fish (reel in and throw back into the water when they're done) or a keeper; when we should introduce men to our child(ren); why the 90-day rule for sex makes sense; how independent women can remember to be ladies; the three things that drive men (who they are, what they do, and how much they make); and why "We need to talk" is a phrase that is man's worst enemy.

    There are some contradictions within the read, like why women need to get out of the 1945 mentality of waiting on men to marry them, but at the same time, sticking to the chivalrous expectations of letting him open doors, wearing heels, carrying heavy items and letting him fix things and paint. (However, I interviewed him for the "Chicago Defender" [article will be out in February sometime] and he explained why he felt some old-fashioned values should still be met. His analysis made sense too.)

    But for every contradiction, there are lessons that make so much sense. Harvey has a point. Women are far more complex with their emotions than men are, judging from his research and his own opinions and observance from my own friends. Poet Maya Angelou said it best when saying "When someone shows you who they are, believe them." That was the main theme throughout Harvey's read--to set standards and stick to them. While some men may feel like Harvey is snitching, women like me finished the read feeling educated and confident in my past decisions. Excellent and quick read, but grab your highlighters and take notes.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Decent, Common Sense Advice, but let's be logical people....., March 4, 2009
    Most of the advice in Steve's book has been already posted, in fact you can glean the major points just from reading the flap copy, so I won't go into that. And be aware the advice appears to be written geared toward women searching for a long term, serious relationship.

    But I wonder why so many people are jumping up and down for joy as if things such as don't sleep with a man immediately, have standards and keep up your appearance are revolutionary ideas. Most of the things in this book, women should be aware of by their late 20s. The advice isn't something you couldn't get from a pastor or a well-meaning male friend, the difference is Steve is a celebrity and a one man promotion machine with his radio show.

    It's true that some women never had good male role models, and I didn't have the best parental example, but as I've gotten older, as I think happens with most people, you mature and are able to find what you are looking for in a relationship. As for the sex thing, I don't think having sex early will automatically make a man lose interest in you. The main reason to wait for women, is that women are not guaranteed to get pleasure out of every sexual act, and disease, so it's better to at least have an emotional connection and know who you're sleeping with.

    And on to Steve Harvey. Of course, I don't know him personally but he has been married three times, and has reportedly not always been a "gentleman" to the women he's dated. So why doesn't he explain his past behavior in the book? Clearly, the emphasis is on how women should behave because a) women are the majority of his fan base b) they are the majority of book buyers. Plus it seems the majority of these Strawberry Letters read on his show are also written by women who seem to have problems so over the top, that I wonder if they aren't made up by someone on Harvey's staff.

    And of course he wrote the book for some profit. There is nothing wrong with that, but let's not act like he's Mother Theresa, and not an entertainer.

    I don't post reviews on amazon but I felt compelled to weigh in on this debate for some reason. All in all, this book contains advice most mature individuals should know. But if you enjoy Harvey's comedy and like to debate and overthink relationships, I think it would be a worthwhile read.

    5-0 out of 5 stars He knows his stuff. Don't overlook this one., June 6, 2009
    Seriously, I know he's a comic and everything, but he's got some good advice in this book. And it's not hard to read, either. He has a lot humor that makes this book so enjoyable to read. I liked it so much, I hope he has a followup. I'd recommend it, definetly, along with How To Be Wanted: Use the Law of Attraction to Date the Man You Most Desire and Live the Life You Deserve.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Nothing new here, April 7, 2009
    I don't understand why everyone thinks this is such a great book. While I found less than a half a dozen things to even smile about. I did find lots of stereotypical fluff and nonsense. If the author intended this book to be funny, he missed the boat. Its not. But if that's what you bought this book for, what a waste of both time and money. Because the alternative would be sad... advice???? I hope readers aren't using this sludge as groundbreaking, thought provoking or insightful advice. Its almost mind-numbing to think most women wouldn't already know most of this. SH is careful to say that all men don't fit into his categories. I would be more apt to say, that most men or the good ones, don't.) One example...SH says he doesn't know a single man who has NOT cheated on his wife. He should probably concentrate on getting a better class of friends and leave the advice to others better "suited." ... Read more

    10. Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes are High
    by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, Al Switzler
    Paperback (2002-06-18)
    list price: $16.95 -- our price: $11.53
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0071401946
    Publisher: McGraw-Hill
    Sales Rank: 754
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Foreword by Stephen R. Covey, Author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People


    "Most books make promises. This one delivers. These skills have not only helped us to change the culture of our company, but have also generated new techniques for working together in ways that enabled us to win the largest contract in our industry's history."--Dain M. Hancock, President, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics

    A powerful, seven-step approach to handling difficult conversations with confidence and skill

    "Crucial" conversations are interpersonal exchanges at work or at home that we dread having but know we cannot avoid. How do you say what needs to be said while avoiding an argument with a boss, child, or relationship partner? Crucial Conversations offers readers a proven seven-point strategy for achieving their goals in all those emotionally, psychologically, or legally charged situations that can arise in their professional and personal lives. Based on the authors' highly popular DialogueSmart training seminars, the techniques are geared toward getting people to lower their defenses, creating mutual respect and understanding, increasing emotional safety, and encouraging freedom of expression. Among other things, readers also learn about the four main factors that characterize crucial conversations, and they get a powerful six-minute mastery technique that prepares them to work through any highimpact situation with confidence. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars For when the going gets tough, November 30, 2010
    We all face situations in life where things are tense and saying the right things is critical. This is what the authors call a "crucial conversation," as opposed to a casual discussion. Crucial conversations happen between two or more people when opinions vary, stakes are high, and emotions run strong. Whether you are approaching a boss who is breaking his or her own policies, critiquing a colleague's work, or talking to a team member who isn't keeping commitments, keeping the conversation productive can be very difficult.

    The main technique the authors teach is the talent of dialogue. This is the free flow of meaning between two or more people. People who use this technique are able to find a way to get all relevant information from themselves and others out in the open and make it safe for everyone to add their meaning to the shared pool. These people try hard to ensure that all ideas find their way into the forum; and as this "pool of shared meaning" grows, it helps people by exposing them to more accurate and relevant information so they can make better decisions. This wise and witty guide gives you the tools you need to step up to life's most difficult and important conversations, say what's on your mind, and achieve positive outcomes. You'll learn how to:

    * Prepare for high-impact situations with a six-minute mastery technique
    * Make it safe to talk about almost anything
    * Be persuasive, not abrasive
    * Keep listening when others blow up or clam up
    * Turn crucial conversations into the action and results you want

    All in all, it's a great book for developing advanced "people skills" and I rank it right up there with Emotional Intelligence 2.0

    4-0 out of 5 stars Fluffy, but very good, April 23, 2007
    This is kind of a fluffy business book... I generally hate these books, but this one has a creamy nougat center of knowledge that I've never encountered before. At 200 pages, its a must read. Please ignore the Franklin Covey vibe: the authors really have something important to say.

    This book solidifies what many have said before: those who genuinely understand how to communicate have all the power in this world. It's not about knowledge, skills, manipulation, or strength... Those who can get groups of people who distrust each other to come to genuine consensus will always have power. Why? Because its so incredibly difficult... and its so incredibly important.

    This book helps you identify the behaviors that help -- and the behaviors that hurt -- when building consensus. Make no mistake about it: human beings are poorly designed to get along with each other. Our brains are wired for competition. At most we co-operate with genetically similar groups. Evolution has wired us to not want to work together with people too different from ourselves, lest we threaten our own survival.

    That may have been useful 2000 years ago in highly competitive tribal cultures, but in the modern world such prejudice is usually counterproductive.

    This book helps you identify which behaviors may be hindering you. When confronted, a human's instinct is fight or flight. In a conversation, the fight instinct comes out in argument, sarcasm, or belittling. Likewise, the flight instinct comes out as keeping quiet and doing nothing, or totally ignoring what the other person said... typical passive-aggressive behavior.

    This book also presents exercises to help you keep a cool head, communicate clearly, and get things done... despite your evolutionary wiring.

    If you read this book, and practice their exercises a lot, you will slowly gain a reputation as somebody who can really make things happen.

    Highly recommended!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Crucial Conversations, March 5, 2003
    As an executive coach working in merger integration activity for many years I have found that the wisdom found in Crucial Conversations can be worth millions and even hundreds of millions of dollars to the clients I work with. Far too many mergers fail because executives avoid having crucial conversations. Finding an authentic path to work through tough issues and critical moments of truth while building long term relationships is a real art. Crucial conversations is filled with practical wisdom from individuals who have discovered "simplicity on the far side of complexity" as it relates to this most difficult and important subject. In my business and personal life, I have found the ideas in this book are invaluable in helping get to the root of difficult issues while maintaining and even enhancing relationships. Very insightful and brilliantly practical.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Insightful, practical, engaging--an exceptional book!, May 6, 2003
    When I obtained a copy of Crucial Conversations, I had very high expectations of this book having read the authors' outstanding earlier work, The Balancing Act. I must say I wasn't disappointed; in fact, I was delighted! Crucial Conversations is an extremely insightful and very practical book. Indeed, it is a very rare combination to find a book that contains profound ideas as well as provides actionable tools and Crucial Conversations delivers both.

    The book addresses a topic that is largely misunderstood and vastly underestimated: high stakes dialogue. The authors define crucial conversations as those where 1) stakes are high, 2) opinions vary, and 3) emotions run strong, or in other words, much of both our professional and personal lives. We're all involved in crucial conversations at home and at work but most of us are not very aware of the interpersonal dynamics at play and/or we're unskilled in how to respond differently. The book helps the reader first understand the principles involved in "crucial conversations" but then also helps the reader develop real skills and abilities to choose or change their communication patterns. The end result is remarkable. The book's impact is a much bigger idea than simple communication--it's all about effective human interaction and getting results with and through people.

    The book is highly readable, extremely engaging and actually quite fun. It is filled with illustrations and stories from all walks of life: business examples, personal examples and family examples. The fact that the principles and skills the authors teach can be applied in all dimensions of life--work, home, personal--is very appealing to me and made the book extremely helpful on many fronts.

    I benefitted most from this book from a business standpoint and have found that applying these skills has made a real difference at work. I'm more courageous and more considerate at the same time. I understand people better but I especially understand myself better. I'm far more conscious and aware of my dialogue with others and I've greatly improved my skills and abilities to lead effectively. The bottom line is, I'm helping my company get better results and I'm far more effective personally. If more people in business were to apply these principles and skills in the frequent crucial conversations they have at work, they would make better decisions, achieve better results and do it all in a way that would build the trust and strengthen relationships. I couldn't give a book higher marks. Outstanding!

    5-0 out of 5 stars worth listening to, May 9, 2007
    I'm not a fan of self-help books or motivational speakers. Usually I'm driven off by the smarmy tone or self-serving verbal gimmicks. But that's not what you get with Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes are High.

    The purpose of this book is to teach skills for managing verbal dialogue in the face of emotional conflict. The authors stay focused on this topic, teaching a series of behavioral, planning, and interpretive techniques for developing a more effective communication style. They are NOT selling happiness, fulfillment, total quality satisfaction, competitive transformation, etc.

    Crucial Conversations uses a variety of instructional methods (examples, diagrams, memory devices, and repetition) to reinforce a modest set of techniques. It avoids gimmicks and hyperbole. The writing is smooth enough to be readable, without diluting the message with entertainment.

    Probably I should wait a few months before writing this review. The authors point out that their dialogue skills can't be mastered without sustained practice and review. But already the book has made me more aware of my own conversational habits and responses. I've got some "crucial conversations" coming up and I'm looking forward to trying some techniques to ratchet down the emotion and cultivate information flow.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Every adult and teenager should read this book!, February 24, 2006
    Since most of my career has included public speaking I am rarely intimidated by confrontation. I have been the employee negotiating for my salary and a boss dealing with overworked, stressed employees. Even with years of experience, this book helped me to be more aware of how my own speech patterns may affect the people I deal with - on both sides of the fence.

    After reading Crucial Conversations, I more easily recognize words that usually invoke an emotional response and avoid them.

    This book makes a wonderful gift for employees, friends and family - all careers from CFO to Coffee Barista to Secretary. I highly recommend this book for seasoned professionals and college students.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Crucial Conversations - Crucial Results, March 4, 2003
    I have read Crucial Conversations cover to cover 4 times now. The results in my business and my marriage have been amazing. The book is well written and easy to understand. It teaches step by step skills to help you master the content. Before reading this book, I thought influential people possessed a natural ability to effectively handle conflict. After reading the book, I now realize that there are specific skill sets that anyone can learn (and master) to effectively deal with these "High Stake," "Strong Emotions," and "Opposing Opinion" conversations.

    My confidence and productivity has increased in every area of my life (My business has increased by 30%-50% since I read the book the first time) and I am now effectively handling conversations with my wife that once caused constant upset.

    I would recommend this book for anyone 1) wanting increased results and 2) willing to have a profound breakthrough in how they communicate. It has made a profound difference for me.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Start now and change your life!, September 17, 2002
    Too many of us never say what is really on our mind, that is until we let the pressure build and it escapes in a way we regret. This book will change your life. It provides the tools you need to commit to meaningful dialogue with those who matter most: family, co-workers and friends. You can have candor and respect at the same time.
    The book is a delightful read, adding humor along the way. It is powerful in the examples taken from real life. It is meant to be read time and again. You will want to practice and perfect these skills, using the time-tested principles until they become a part of you.

    5-0 out of 5 stars It helped me immediately!, March 24, 2004
    I see now why now why my principal gave others and me this book. Earlier today our committee of educators came up with a new program to replace a set of undefined steps that had us three months in arrears in our caseload. The unanimous and accepted consensus, I believe, only came about from applying the ideas in Crucial Conversations. Those that had disagreed with the new program did behave badly, but this did not side track the process. Applying the authors advice of keeping focused on what I want enabled me to avoid being sucked in.

    I offer one snippet the books ideals. They say, If you behaved badly apologize but if your intentions have been misunderstood don't apologize do a clarifying "don't/do" statement: "Don't think I mean this awful thing you have been thinking. Do realize that I mean this." They indicate that such statements are just the beginning of repairing what they call safety. This repair was crucial to obtaining today's agreement. Try it!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Life-changing book, February 5, 2007
    This book should be required reading for almost everyone! It describes how to initiate and carry through difficult conversations which effect everyone's lives. It teaches the reader how to examine his own motives and desires before attempting to share his ideas with someone else. It shows how to clarify issues and then present them openly and honestly without offending the other person in the conversation. Too often we resort to silence or violence when dealing with crucial conversations and the authors point out the futility of either position. This book is now being used in many businesses and is required reading for employees. Whether dealing with business or personal issues, this book is a superb resource. ... Read more

    11. The Snuggie Sutra
    by Lex Friedman, Megan Morrison
    list price: $9.99 -- our price: $9.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0312652674
    Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
    Sales Rank: 884
    Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    The Snuggie is a pop culture icon that quickly developed its own cult of awareness. Few of us were asking for a blanket with sleeves, but that’s because we’d forgotten how to dream. Once we’d purchased our Snuggies, we quickly realized our world had changed for the better. Now, we want to show you just what makes the Snuggie cozy and sexy. Brilliantly illustrated with drawings of couples in flagrante delicto, our comprehensive guide includes—in ascending order of difficulty—everything from “The Warm and Snuggie” (for beginners) to “The Yes Ma’am” (perfect for hiding your flaws—not that you have any, of course!) to “The Night In” (which works great when you're staying home to page through The Snuggie Sutra).
    Based on our blog of the same name, which scored mentions everywhere from The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien to New York magazine and a host of radio stations all over the country, The Snuggie Sutra covers important topics like how to convince your partner to bring a Snuggie into the bedroom and how to set the Snuggie mood (candles and Snuggies don't mix!). We are thrilled to share this first-of-its-kind sexual handbook with the reading, Snuggie-wearing, and love-making public.
    --The Snuggie Sutrists
    ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!!!!!, October 5, 2010
    Up to this point I only had shower curtain and duct tape. My folks always said i had limited imagintaion. Thank you writers of Snuggie Sutra. Now me and my everquest friends have activities for hours when the internet connection is down. I know its not in the book but im obese and i have modified many chapters buy just doubling where it says to "take your snuggie" I just repalced snuggie for Snuggies. I have added many hopefully the writes will add mine to this. My personal favorite is the dark knight. Were in a deep voice while i cover the lower half of my face, i try to fool my buddy its someone else under the snuggie. Also my friend reminded me that technically im the pig in the blankets.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Funny but best read at home, November 23, 2010
    This book is hilarious. However when you start to laugh aloud in a public place friends and co-workers may ask what you are laughing at. It's a tad embarrassing to tell them-- unless they are very good friends. It's fun to tell close friends about this book and to read it with your spouse or partner. But your boss, not so much. Anyhow, with all the troubles in the world, everyone needs laughter and joy and this little book provides both.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Strong follow up to the Kama Sutra, September 30, 2010
    While I prefer my first book in the series, the long awaited sophomore release, The Snuggie Sutra, performs admirably despite its size. The illustrations are first rate and guaranteed to bring you Kama. The writing is to the point and full of Dharma, and at $9.99 you will attain Artha with ease.

    5-0 out of 5 stars THE BEST ADD-ON COFFEE TABLE BOOK EVER! (That or behind the toilet!), December 21, 2010
    The Snuggie Sutra

    What can I say? Amazing! Someone took the time to write this book that will remain a laugh for our family and friends for years to come! Its semi adult orientated but that is only about as much adult as two stick figures can get lol! This book will go on the table along with The Zombie Survival Guide and Poo Happens. I purchased this book last night along with a late minute Siamese Slanket and within 18 hours it arrived at my door. 18 hours people! I purchased it at 9 or 10 PM at night and it got here before 2PM the next day! Perfect packaging. Now back to the book! The pages, the text, the printing - worth the hard cover - very nice paper used. 10 bucks on a book for me is a lot. I don't believe in it personally but for a gift - I was like OK.. When I got it - this paper isn't what appears to be the cheap garbage but quality semi-gloss with a great inking. The wording - The pictures - Everything.


    5-0 out of 5 stars The Best Thing to Talk About at a Party, October 19, 2010
    I was at a party last night and somehow the discussion about snuggies came up (they always seem to do so). While everyone was clamoring about how much they loved wearing their snuggies in cold weather at home, I jumped into the scene and asked everyone, "Have you heard of the snuggie sutra?" They all looked at me like I was crazy, but after a few seconds--their judging looks turned more into curiosity.

    This is the experience I always get when talking about the Snuggie Sutra. With over 100 sexual positions that you and your partner can do with a snuggie, you will never get bored at home! The drawings are very fun and got to dig the little anecdotes provided as well.

    I also love how the authors disclose in the preface that it doesn't necessarily have to be between a man and a woman, which opens the door to so much more LGBTQ fun!

    At only $9.99, why not? Get a copy for yourself and put it on your coffee table, and you will never have a problem entertaining guests. Buy your friends who are passionate snuggie-users a book as well as a present!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Hilarious!, December 26, 2010
    I bought this book as a gag gift. It just shows a bunch of different positions that can be fun with the use of a snuggie. Highly recommend it for the laughs alone...if you use the position suggestions, even better!

    4-0 out of 5 stars A funny little book....., December 13, 2010
    I gave this book along with a Snuggie to a friend and they thought it was hilarious! The book provides alot of smiles, giggles, and out right laughter! Perfect book to give with the Snuggie!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Awesome Book!, December 1, 2010
    This book is hilarious! I got it as a gift for someone, as well as a Snuggie to go with it. I looked through it quickly the first few chapters are so funny! Check it out!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Book!, September 29, 2010
    Gives me and my wife something to do while watching Season Two of "Hey Dude"! Much better than laying around in a Slanket and watching "Salute Your Shorts"!

    2-0 out of 5 stars Good gag gift but otherwise kind of lame, December 21, 2010
    I bought this as a gag gift for a friend and it was effective but it's really not something anyone needs in their collection. There are some 3-ways and 4-ways and just flat-out bizarre "positions" but it's an interesting read for 5 minutes of your life that you'll never get back. ... Read more

    12. Codependent No More: How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself
    by Melody Beattie
    list price: $15.95 -- our price: $10.85
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0894864025
    Publisher: Hazelden Publishing
    Sales Rank: 971
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    recovery has begun for millions of individuals with this straightforward guide.through personal examples and exercises, readers are shown how controlling others forces them to lose sight of their own needs and happiness. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars A codependent person let's another's behavior affect them..., March 8, 2001
    This book is good for people who find themselves depressed and needing some insight on why they feel the way they do. After reading this book the other book by Melody Beattie "Beyond Codepedency" will help you fix the codependent problem. These books will help anyone who is dealing with an alcoholic relationship or any other dependent relationship. If you find yourself caretaking all the time, ie: thinking or feeling responsible for other people, feel it is your responsiblity to help other people solve their problems, feel needy people are always attracted to you, and feeling unappreciated or used; or you have weak boundaries with the people in your life; you have dependency issues; poor communication; and low self-worth- you are codependent. I didn't think I was, but this book laied my life out perfectly. If you are feeling crazy for the way you are feeling read this book and you will understand why you are feeling the way you are. It is normal it is just you are a codependent person and you need to fix that.

    5-0 out of 5 stars My Upside-Down Life Found Balance and I'm Back On My Feet!, February 28, 2005
    Instead of spending hours of your time, expressing how anxious and depressed I was, and for so many years, I'd share a few things that might tell my story of recovery in a more concise mode.

    I had everything but had nothing. I had been Senior Class President, Top 2% in the Country during College, successful in modeling and acting, selected as Volunteer of the Year for the State of Iowa and the list of "stuff" could go on an on. I was so empty inside myself that I didn't any longer know how I felt inside. I was losing any sense of who I was.

    I'd become someone that functioned to serve, protect, nurture, encourage, forgive and love someone that couldn't love back. I was with the same person, in a marriage, for almost 5 years, and woke up one morning and realized that the person next to me was a stranger who didn't know the real me. The person that my life revolved around, the person that I chose to take care of and "cover" for, just liked having me around so I could pick up the pieces and paint a picture of a relationship and a family that was like "Ozzie and Harriet" so that others would think that everything was just fine. I can't stand the word "fine" anymore. Nothing in my life was fine and it wasn't until I hit bottom and read "Codependent No More:How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself", that my life began to change. The book answered all of my questions and caused me to look deeply at myself and my situation and evalute how sick I was. Yes, I was the sick one in the relationship too.

    I thought that I was doing everything right or doing what was right for my relationship. But I didn't ever consider that my own personal cup was empty and the only person who could fill it with healthy things was me. I didn't know that I was controlling others as I only saw myself as a caring and loving person. What had happened is that I went overboard-WAY overboard to the point that I had stopped eating, started using pills to medicate my pain and refused to make changes in my life.

    I was scared. I didn't want to be alone in life. What I didn't realize is that I was already alone. I wanted to love and be loved. After reading this incredible book, I realized that I wasn't being loved. I was being used and abused and I needed to hit this emotional bottom before I would accept help. My therapist advised me to purchase "Codependent No More", by Melody Beattie AND to read it. I almost felt odd going into the self-help are of the book store. Little did I know that the healthiest place in any book store is the aisle that reads "Self Help"!

    I owe my life to this book and I thank all of the wonderful people who contributed to the stories in this book, that allowed me to move out of my relationship and to enter a long recovery period. I am still in the care of a therapist. Sometimes I act in a codependent fashion. The difference, however, is that I now see red flags that prevent me from getting too deep into relationships that I reach a point where I lose myself.

    I offer this review to you as a gift. May this book help you, no matter what your circumstance, and may you take hold of your life again. You deserve to learn how to care for yourself. You deserve to be loved and to learn how to accept the beauty that comes with a healthy relationship.

    My Warmest Regards to ALL!

    Peter Cannice
    Scottsdale, Arizona

    4-0 out of 5 stars A terrific first step towards happier living, December 20, 2002
    So far as I can tell, very few people could ever read this book without taking something positive away from it. And you don't have to be the product of a broken home, child abuse, neglect, or other serious trauma to see how the machinery of so-called "codependency" tweaks your life; always for the worse.

    Having read other peoples' reviews, I'm not sure where some of the negative "cult" comments and rancor come from. I recognized a lot of these behaviors in mysef and in my family, and I'm not from an abusive, alcoholic, or otherwise chemically shattered upbringing. I have good parents and I had a good childhood. Just the same, even good parents and a good childhood are no guarantee against developing unhealthy relationship habits, as well as damaging internal emotional processes.

    If you're like me, you shy away from "self help" literature because it all seems way too touchy-feely. I don't see myself as a victim, and I refuse to adopt the victim mentality. But nobody gives parents a rule book on setting healthy emotional boundaries with their kids, and kids that grow up in a home without healthy emotional boundaries become adults without healthy emotional boundaries. This can really get you into trouble when you start trying to form a family of your own, and is the reason why I sought out this book with urgency.

    Does it seem like your hapiness is too connected to how other people live their lives? Do you get really upset and depressed because those whom you love engage in behavior you see as risky or damaging? Feel powerless to stop your loved one from using or abusing mind altering substances? Tired of always feeling like "the bad guy" when you're just trying to get your partner to "be good"? Has your own social circle dwindled or vanished, so that now only your partner and his/her friends are 'your' social group? Would you like to know why it's so hard to get out of bed every morning, and why you spend so much time worrying about that certain person in your life, while worrying too little about yourself?

    The problem called "co-odependency" is not a catch-all, nor is it remedied over night. But I'd dare say that at least half or more of American adults--indeed adults across the entire world--struggle with some form of co-dependent-like behavior. And if you want a deeper insight into this problem, what it is, what it is not, and how it messes with your life, then read this book, and gain strength from understanding.

    Now, having said all this, and having dealt with these issues for a few years, I think I need to be honest and say that a book like this is only the FIRST STEP. Nothing replaces a good therapist or psychologist. If you feel like you really are that messed up or are "going bonkers", please, see about getting some professional counseling. When your car is broken do you try to fix it yourself? No, most of us do not. Not even those of us who are handy with cars. The same is true for psychological and emotional disturbances. Many companies now offer Employee Assistance Programs (EAP) that offset or eliminate the costs of counseling. If your company has an EAP, by all means, use it!

    Barring counseling, I would HIGHLY SUGGEST another book, once you have passed through the bowels of "Codependent No More" and are ready to move beyond merely identifying your problems, and are anxious to work on SOLVING them.

    To merely gaze at one's navel and bemoan the sorry state of one's broken or damaged history is to remain trapped in emotional and mental amber. You're not REALLY going to "get better" until you attack the unhealthy mental habits at the heart of the problem. Understanding the root of the trouble is just a first step, making changes for the better is what happens next, and ought to be the logical goal of EVERY person seeking relief from abnormal or extreme emotional and psychological disturbance.

    Which is why I highly, highly, highly, suggest seeking out the classic "A Guide to Rational Living" by PhD. Albert Ellis and PhD. Robert A. Harper. Whereas Beattie is good at giving a layman's view of co-dependent problems and guiding the unkowing through a tour of co-dependent issues, where they might come from, and how they affect our lives in the present, she is not technically a TRAINED professional in mental health care. Without seeking that kind of professional-level knowledge, one is very likely to fall into the "Twelve Step Trap" wherein 'recovery' becomes an asymptotic hell of forever progressing towards wellness, without actually attaining wellness.

    Doctors Ellis and Harper have the goods on making changes in your life RIGHT NOW, without facing a daunting and endless program of eternal Anonymous-type meetings and couch sessions with your shrink. Refreshingly pragmatic and frank, Ellis and Harper give you a toolbox full of solid instruments to help you start dismantling that co-dependent house you've built for yourself (yes, I said YOU built for YOURSELF), and avoiding taking on "group" and perpetual "recovery" as just another set of addictions or ways to avoid truly attaining mental and emotional health.

    Thanks for reading. Best of luck on your journey, as I continue my own.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Not Like Any Other Self-Improvement Book, May 31, 1999
    This book saved my sanity, my relationship, maybe even my life. I was going through major upsets in my relationship due to a partner's addiction. I was trying to "fix the world" one painful day at a time. When nothing happened except for me to lose hope, trust, faith and love, I turned to a friend for advice. She recommended this book to me. I was skeptical to try yet another DO IT YOURSELF book to fix what was wrong with me, but this one opened my eyes. For the first time ever, I saw the patterns of my actions leading me straight to heartache and frustration. The descriptions were right on target, I saw myself in every list. It was scary, yet encouraging, because I did not feel alone, nor did I feel I was too far gone to be helped. This book will be a fixture on my nightstand to get me through the weaker points in my life. Whenever I need to take a reality check and think of ME instead of that other person, I open the pages and let it heal me. Thank you, Ms. Beattie!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Just what I needed to hear, April 10, 2001
    I read this book to help me to understand why I could not seem to fully separate myself from an extremely dysfunctional relationship that I had been in for almost 8 years. While Melody frequently uses alcoholics and drug addicts as her examples of co-dependents, that was not the case for me. I was in a relationship with a person that was/is clinically depressed (and not doing anything about it) and who would take their anger out on me. Our home life revolved around how he was feeling from day to day, as it does also with alcoholics. This book helped me realize how I had ended up essentially taking care of a grown man because he didn't want to do it himself. There were lots of other problems with the relathionship, but the main thing is after reading this book I finally woke up. I can honestly say that I have been able to detach from that person (not an easy task) and my life has been so much better for it. This new knowledge has also helped my other relationships with friends and family. I am learning how not to get over-involved and feel a need to 'fix' someone else's problems that they have created for themselves. This book definitely has set me on the right path and I hope to be able to continue to look out for ME.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fully develope your owm life, December 23, 2000
    This book is about living your own life instead of living your life for your significant other. It is a wonderful book. It changed my life. I would also highly recommend the book An Encounter With A Prophet which helped me become more reliant on God.

    2-0 out of 5 stars lacked anything practical, June 22, 2006
    This was an interesting book to read, and perhaps an appropriate introduction, but at the end I felt like I was wallowing in codependency, not moving on and learning practical ways to heal. This book merely identifies the problem, but fails move to the next step of becoming "Codependent No More".

    I felt this book was more theoretical than practical. Additionally, I don't like Beattie's overall philosophy, extracted from work with alcoholism, that once Codependent, Always Codependent.

    A better foundation for beginning to work through these issues has been one of continually self-awareness, healing and breaking old codependent habits.

    Instead of Beatie, I would recommend Breaking Free From the Codependency Trap, which provides a brief overview of codependency, but incredibly practical solutions for individuals, couples, therapy sessions and group therapy.Breaking Free of the Co-Dependency Trap

    5-0 out of 5 stars BREAKING THE CHAINS OF CODEPENDENCY, June 28, 2001
    As a counsellor with thirty years experience, I can assure you that, contrary to what at least one other reviewer has indicated, loving yourself is NOT easy for everyone. If life was that simple, counsellor's case loads would be much lighter and the world a much happier place.

    This book is an excellent starting point and great self-help book for those who are codependent. It is not simply a matter of "starting to love yourself," but a matter of going back through the years, generally to the formative years of childhood, and discovering why you have developed the need to be codependent. In other words, it helps to know where you came from before mapping a route to where you are going. I did find the book made considerable reference to drug and alcohol addiction. While that is a major form of codependency, it is not the only form, but others received less priority. For that reason, the book lost a star in the rating. "Codependent No More" is written in an honest, straight-forward manner; therefore, if it evokes anger or negativism in the reader, it is likely because the reader sees at least a partial reflection of themself in the book.

    Like any self-help book, the advice given only works if the individual is prepared to make long-term changes and has the commitment to work at the root of the problem. For those who are codependent to a minor degree, this book provides helpful insight on how to deal with the problem; however, if the problem is a more serious one, opting for professional counselling is likely still the best course of action. Often old habits are difficult to change on one's own. Freeing yourself from the chains of codependency can result in newfound freedom, peace of mind and a happier, less stressful lifestyle. I do recommend this book for the valuable information it contains.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Codependent No More, April 12, 2000
    Finding myself a soon to be divorced woman and mother of four, I entered counseling and after one session, this book was recommended to me. It truly changed my life. I returned to school, became a registered nurse and turned my life around. That was 6+ years ago; my children are learning healthy lifetime behaviours that I didn't have available from my family; and sad to say, my ex-husband is still as lost as ever. This book changed my life and I have bought and given away more than 2 cases to others. Thank you, Melody, for your insight and direction. Its there for the taking, if you only open yourself to change.

    5-0 out of 5 stars This book CAN save your life, March 10, 2003
    I read a review on here that said calling codependency "a progressive disease which can eventually lead to death is absolutely ludicrous, sky-high rhetoric." I am glad this reviewer has never felt the overwhelming depression and despair of codependency that can lead to thoughts of suicide but I am here to tell you that I have felt it and this book did save my life. Fortunately, I read it at a time when I needed it most. For anyone to say that you just need to "get a life" or grow up, they are obviously not people who need this book.

    If you feel that you are constantly going in circles trying to please everyone in your life, this is the book for you. If you feel that you are not "good enough" to be around other people, this book is for you. Even if you are not surrounded by chemically-dependent people you can still be codependent.

    I read this book for the first time about 12 years ago. I have bought and given away many copies and don't even own my own copy at this point. Getting past being a people-pleaser does not make you nasty or selfish or an egomaniac. Instead it allows you to give of yourself fully to those things that YOU want to give fully to. You learn to say yes to what you really want to do instead of being a doormat who can never say no because it just isn't nice.

    Read this book for yourself. Please don't let the naysayers persuade you against this book. You don't have to be a fan of 12-step programs to read this book. I tried that route and it did not work for me but this book did. Good luck to everyone becoming the person you were meant to be! ... Read more

    13. Querida Dra. Polo: Las cartas secretas de 'Caso Cerrado' (Dear Dr. Polo: The Secret Letters of 'Caso Cerrado')
    by Dra. Ana Maria Polo
    list price: $15.99 -- our price: $10.87
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 1616050721
    Publisher: Aguilar
    Sales Rank: 1297
    Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    A traves de un formato epistolar, la Dra. Ana Maria Polo nos ofrece un dramatico retrato de vidas sin respuestas. Son los casos desesperados de quienes le escriben a la espera de un espacio en su programa o una solucion a sus problemas, pero cuyos relatos son demasiado explicitos, extraordinarios, o desgarradores para la pantalla televisiva. Cada uno recibe aqui la respuesta de la Dra. Polo. Una respuesta honesta, directa y a veces dura, pero siempre con el carino y la sensibilidad que caracteriza a la Dra. Ana Maria Polo. Estructura del libro: Prologo 21 cartas y respuestas. Para que no te pase a ti: indice de recursos legales. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent!, November 20, 2010
    I couldn't expect less from Dra. Polo. The book is great, very entertaining and certainly it is not a children's book so I don't know why other people are offended by its content. When promoting the book she says clearly that these are cases too graphic to be aired on TV, and they are. but I am a great fan of hers, I am only 22 and I would definitely recommend this book to anybody.

    4-0 out of 5 stars ic, December 11, 2010
    What part of "cases that were too controversial to air on tv" do people not understand? Why would anyone be shocked? This book would obviously deal with strong topics which are controversial in nature. This is REALITY, not Mother Goose. Dr. Polo has always addressed her cases on tv in a tactful yet direct manner, always considering her show is aired on tv. The cases which were too graphic and could not be aired are related in this book. I thought it was excellent and was written in a profesional manner. This is not porn or sensationalistic. It is reality folks, deal with it.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Shocking!, December 1, 2010
    Es una recopilacion de casos reales, en donde se despertara sentimientos de impotencia al leer la realidad de muchos y muchas personas que llegan a vivir lo imaginable.
    Este libro se lo compre a mi madre, quies es una fanatica de "Caso Cerrado".
    Por lo poco que llegue a leer, este es un libro que tiene que leerse con muy amplio criterio.
    Es obvio que no es apto para la televion debido a su alto contexto en violencia y sexo.
    A mi madre, quien es una fanatica de "Caso Cerrado", le parecio fuerte y algunas veces desagradable.
    Es un libro detallado en su mayoria de veces, demasiado grafico y algunas veces sensacionalista diria yo, que puede provocar en el lector un grado de incomodidad.
    Un libro de esta magnitud no se puede recomedar deliberadamente a cualquier persona. Tampoco lo recomendo como un regalo para alguien.

    2-0 out of 5 stars This book was more of the tv show. Not impress at all!, December 11, 2010
    Querida Dra.Polo; Las Cartas secretas de 'Caso Cerrado'
    Was not very impress, the book is almost the same themes that you see on tv. Most of the book was about lies,cheating and sex topics. I know it supposed to be cases that can't be seen or discuss on tv, but in the show you already see that. Please Dra. Polo, write a book with different law themes, like inmigration, living wills,domestic violence, etc., to help the people with questions in need for answers. No more sex or trashy subjects to make this world worse.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Cartas a Dra, Polo, November 18, 2010
    This book should be rated R. The book was a gift for a senior citizen that admires Dra. Polo and never misses her show. She was so embarrassed to find out the contents were more of a pornographic nature. We can understand now why not too many details are given when the book is promoted. Somehow what she says on television does not sound as vulgar as when it is written on paper. ... Read more

    14. Love & Respect: The Love She Most Desires; The Respect He Desperately Needs
    by Emerson Eggerichs
    list price: $22.99 -- our price: $15.12
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 1591451876
    Publisher: Thomas Nelson
    Sales Rank: 1115
    Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    A Marriage Book with a Difference!

    A Revolutionary Message

    "I've been married 35 years and have not heard this taught.""This is the key that I have been missing.""A lightbulb moment.""You connected all the dots for me.""As a counselor, I have never been so excited about any material.""You're on to something huge here."

    A Simple Message

    A wife has one driving need -- to feel loved. When that need is met, she is happy. A husband has one driving need -- to feel respected.When that need is met, he is happy.

    When either of these needs isn't met, things get crazy. "Love and Respect" reveals why spouses react negatively to each other, and how they can deal with such conflict quickly, easily and biblically.

    A Message That Works

    Based on over three decades of counseling, as well as scientific and biblical research, Dr. Emerson Eggerichs and his wife, Sarah, have already taken the "Love and Respect" message across America and are changing the way couples talk to, think about, and treat each other.

    What do you want for your marriage? Want some peace? Want to feel close? Want to feel valued? Want to experience marriage the way God intended? Then why not try some "Love and Respect." ... Read more


    4-0 out of 5 stars NOT THE SEMINAR ON DVD, February 27, 2006
    This book includes a DVD that is a 30 minute book promotion. It is NOT the Love & Respect Conference. If you want the official Love & Respect Conference on DVD you have to order it from

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good principal, disappointed in tone and tangibles..., September 21, 2006
    I thought the principal behind the book was something that will help virtually every married couple. My husband and I laughed at sections b/c we found some of the anecdotes so spot on to our daily lives. Eggerichs clearly explained to us why we keep going through the "Crazy Cycle." The Respect/Love needs in men/women is potentially a marriage saver or breaker.

    I have 2 constructive criticisms of the book. I still recommend this book, however I do give these caveats:
    1. This book talks as if men know how to love their wives. There may be a million books out there on how to do it, but we didn't have those. My husband and I were reading this one. And I grew weary of hearing how women needed to learn to respect their husbands. Frankly, I grasped the principal within the first few pages. After a few chapters, I felt like rolling my eyes a little. Because he paid so little attention to talking about how men should love their wives, it felt like that part was very trivialized. I understand that was not the point, however, the title was "Love & Respect", not just "Respect."
    2. I would have liked more tangible examples of exactly what it means to "Respect" my husband. I want to do it. And he made it clear that "nagging, complaining, and whining" at him were disrespectful. But I need more examples. What are the active things I can do? Is it disrespectful to remind my husband to take the garbage out the night before? If it is, then how do I make sure the task gets done w/out reminding him? It isn't an issue of control, but I have to get the kids out the door in the morning and I need help and I need him to do this one thing. Make sense? I need to know how to have those discussions w/out disrespecing him.

    I hestitate to use this as a small group book b/c it is so one-sided. And it tends to repeat itself. Again, I got the principal pretty quickly. And as good as it is, after a while, enough is enough. Another reviewer said it felt a bit like a brochure for the conference. That is exactly how I felt.

    A good book? Yes. A helpful principle? Absolutely. A must-read? Maybe. But definitely helpful to a Christian marriage and therefore, I do and would recommend it.

    2-0 out of 5 stars An ok basic premise, but enough problems that I'd advise other books over this one, March 24, 2009
    The good:

    1) I like the connection between love and respect. Every time he says husbands need respect and wives need love, you have to translate that mentally into *both* husbands *and* wives need love *and* respect, but the basic premise is a good one -- the Christian understanding of love indicates an attitude of honoring, respecting, and blessing the other person.

    2) The crazy cycle and reward cycle. This is one of the most important things most couples could learn. Our behaviors are self-reinforcing and good things to lead to more good things in a cycle. Likewise, bad things often lead to more bad things. The good news is that we serve a God of redemption and just as the gospel message teaches us that Christ breaks us out of a cycle of sin, God can redeem broken marriages and break them out of destructive cycles.

    3) For *some* couples, a disrespectful attitude toward the husband or an unloving attitude toward the wife *is* the problem. For those relationships, I imagine they would benefit greatly from this book.

    The not-so-good:

    1) As mentioned by several reviewers already, the book is incredibly sexist. I started making a `W' in the margins when Dr. Eggerichs blamed the wife for the problem and a `H' when he blamed the husband. Skimming back through, it's about 90% W's. Just about any time he says something negative about the husband, you are almost guaranteed to get a follow-up sentence about how his wife's pettiness or nagging or belittling comments or criticizing or bitterness or whatever was really the root cause of the husband's behavior. At times, it was to the point I thought he was emasculating men by making us out to be powerless -- we can't take responsibility for our own behavior because every issue is probably our wife's fault anyway.

    2) It's kindof a continuation of #1, but I honestly can't believe he found a man and a *woman* to blame the husband's marital infidelity on the wife. Finding a man who wants to justify his immorality by blaming his wife shouldn't be too hard, but Dr. Eggerichs found a woman who blamed *herself* for her husband's philandering. The idea that a man has so little control over his own actions that he is to be expected to wander if his wife doesn't `put out' often enough is just galling.

    3) The narrowness of the focus. As I mentioned above, a disrespected husband or unloved wife is a problem for some couples. But there's lots of reasons marriages struggle, and disrespect is only one of the possibilities. Dr. Eggerichs doesn't acknowledge that at all.

    4) He spends quite a bit of energy being defensive about it, so Dr. Eggerichs clearly realizes that the idea of unconditional respect has some problems. I honestly don't see the appeal of unconditional respect. If I want respect from my wife (which I most certainly do!), I will act in a way that *deserves* respect. Why would I demand her unconditional respect regardless of my actions unless I couldn't be bothered to earn it?

    5-0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended, October 8, 2004
    A marvelous book that far surpasses earlier Christian (e.g., His Needs, Her Needs) and secular (e.g., Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus) treatments of the topic. While other books have identified a variety of gender-based psychological and biological differences, Dr. Eggerich provides a framework (Love/Respect) that is beautiful for both its simplicity and its ability to explain these gender differences as part of God's plan for men, women, and marriage.

    Some reviewers will undoubtedly write-off the book as full of "sexist stereotypes." In contrast, I found the book to reveal profound truths that are just as relevant to someone like me - a professor at a major university who would describe her marriage as "egalitarian" - as to women who have chosen more traditional roles.

    5-0 out of 5 stars THIS IS A MUST READ!!, November 1, 2004
    Love and Respect is one of the finest books I have read on the topic of male female communication. As this book gains more and more exposure it will go down as a must own in Christian marriage counseling. Not only did I order the book, but I also ordered the 9 cd set on the same topic and the workbooks "Motivating Your Man God's Way. I am a single living in New York and this book contains tremendous material for singles that will prove to be invaluable once they get married. I have taught much of the content in our bible studies. The purchasing of this book may be the single greatest investment you can man make to learn about the opposite sex, and have a God centered marriage.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Only on Chapter 2 - But Know It Is A Must Read, December 2, 2004
    This book was recommended to us by our counselor. She is recommending it to every single one of the couples she counsels or has counseled. That's how much she believes in this book. My husband and I read the introduction and knew right away that it was going to help us build a stronger foundation and have a better marriage. The concept is so simple - he needs respect and she needs to know she's loved - but you'll have an A-HA moment and know that it's so very true. The book will feel like it's talking directly to you. Every couple should read this book - happy couples and couples in trouble.

    5-0 out of 5 stars I wish I had heard this a long time ago..., January 14, 2005
    I thought my husband and I had a "decent" marriage. I knew I would stay in my marriage, but I had begun to think "this is the best it is going to get." I thought we would continue to co-exist, but our communication was so-so, and my desire for him was waning. Then I heard the video series in a Adult Sunday class at church and it changed my mind and heart forever. I realized why my expectations were not being fulfilled, and my husband and I looked at each other after the first video with tears in our eyes. I have shared this information with so many other women, and at first they look so baffled. But once you grasp it, your life and your marriage will never be the same. I see my husband with new eyes, and look at him the way I did when we first met. That is so nice after almost 19 years of marriage. It is a great book, and we plan to share it with our soon to be married son.

    5-0 out of 5 stars God has given Dr. Eggerichs the key to unlock the secret about marriage!, January 9, 2007
    I love the message that God has given Dr. Eggerichs! It is so on point and can turn a bad marriage to good and a so-so marriage to WONDERFUL! My husband and were taking the seminar at our church and we decided to buy the book. What Dr. Eggerichs revealed about men and women and marriage brought on a whole new understanding.

    I suggest this book for any married couple or couples who are thinking of getting married.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Worth Some Consideration, With a Grain of Salt, March 18, 2006
    In the landscape of relational manuals, this book offers a fresh perspective worth considering: women are wired to need love primarily, while it's more important to men to feel respected (even though both genders appreciate both things, the priorities tend to be different). The group I discussed the book with quickly came to the conclusion that the definition one hangs on the word "respect" is all-important in evaluating the truth of this proposition. I feared at first that "respect" would prove to be a patriarchal diatribe about how women should subdue their disagreements with their husbands and humor them as though their gender-granted apparatus made them superior decision-makers by default. It turns out that "respect" in the author's worldview has more to do with not communicating belittling messages through tone of voice and less to do with subduing disagreement. I thought I disagreed with the premise entirely until the author asked the question: at work, if I had to choose, would I rather be loved by co-workers or respected? And I realized that although I need love, I'd rather be respected. The useful second half of the book presents six points of "understanding" for each gender to consider about the other (with the expected cheesy acronyms to help the memory).

    Unfortunately, like many current evangelical publications, it suffers from typically poor writing. It also includes an occasional, unnecessary jibes at people with a different psychological makeup than the author. ("Men don't sit at round tables at cafes, talking face-to-face about their emotions," generalizes Eggerichs, a pronouncement that is belied by my own personal experience.) Overall, though, I found it more helpful than I thought I would, even though my wife and I found ourselves "flipped" from the "traditional" role preferences described in the book (as did another couple in our group). A good starting point for conversation, and not at all as sexist as I'd feared.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Good principle, lopsided execution, April 5, 2009
    My husband and I were given this book as a wedding present. The principle is fine if not a tad obvious: love her, respect him and then you'll avoid conflict from feeling unloved or disrepected. Also obvious from the title is that Eggerson is probably going to compartmentalize the sexes and overgeneralize male/female distinctions, and he does. Personally, I couldn't relate to a lot of the "typical woman behavior" he describes (being emotional, nagging, neatness) or even what some of my "primary drives" are supposed to be as a woman. I guess I don't fit his stereotype. And in actuality, I want respect as much as I want love, and I think husbands and wives need both for a healthy relationship. His premise seems oversimplified and doesn't reflect the complexity of real relationships and real people.

    Another problem I had with the book was some subtle sexism that crept into the author's writing. He definitely stresses the "wives should respect" side of things more than the "husbands should love" idea, and he often seems to excuse the husband's behavior because the wife isn't being respectful enough or meeting his needs (even though he claims it's supposed to work both ways). One way you can tell is from the examples he gives- they usually illustrate the wife seeing the light and changing her wrong behavior and rarely the other way around. His examples also exemplify fairly narrow gender roles, like the husband who comes home after a long day of work to his homemaking wife who wants to jaw his ear off about the kids while he wants peace and quiet in front of the TV. I never saw any references to women working outside the home, but for men, he includes it as one of their primary desires. Again, this does not describe the reality that I live in nor the one I see played out for most couples I know.

    If you want to judge for yourself, here are his main points. He says women want:
    -Closeness: She wants to you to be close
    -Openness: She wants you to open up to her
    -Understanding: Don't try to "fix" her, just listen
    -Peacemaking: She wants you to say "I'm sorry"
    -Loyalty: She needs to know you're committed
    -Esteem: She wants you to honor and cherish her
    to feel loved while men want:
    -Conquest: Appreciate his desire to work and achieve
    -Hierarchy: Appreciate his desire to protect and provide
    -Authority: Appreciate his desire to serve and to lead
    -Insight: Appreciate his desire to analyze and counsel
    -Relationship: Appreicate his desire for shoulder-to-shoulder friendship
    -Sexuality: Appreciate his desire for sexual intimacy
    to feel respected.

    If you don't see any problems with the things I've mentioned, it would probably be a very helpful book for you. I won't deny that there is some value in certain points he makes. But if you don't fall into sterotypical gendered behavior and narrow gender roles, you will probably end up frustrated and would be better off skipping it altogether.
    ... Read more

    15. Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.? Stopping the Roller Coaster When Someone You Love Has Attention Deficit Disorder
    by Gina Pera
    list price: $21.95 -- our price: $21.41
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0981548709
    Publisher: 1201 Alarm Press
    Sales Rank: 597
    Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    Winner of four national book awards, including Foreword Magazine's Psychology Book of the Year!
    The science has been clear since 1994, when Adult AD/HD was declared a medical diagnosis. Still, the public harbors misconceptions, and that means millions suffer needlessly. And that includes millions of couples who can't understand why their lives together are so hard -- sometimes despite many attempts at couples therapy.

    Everyone knows someone with adult AD/HD. Yet we misattribute the symptoms to anxiety, depression, or even laziness, selfishness, or moodiness. Moreover, we assume AD/HD means "little boys with ants in their pants." In fact, childhood hyperactivity goes "underground" as the person matures, resulting in a mentally restless state. (By the way, the former, and still better-known, official term is ADD, plus or minus Hyperactivity. The new term, AD/HD, uses a slash mark to indicate that hyperactivity is not central to the diagnosis.)

    Meticulously researched by award-winning journalist Gina Pera, Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.? is a comprehensive guide to recognizing the behaviors where you least expect them (on the road and in the bedroom, for example) and developing compassion for couples wrestling with unrecognized ADHD symptoms. It also offers the latest information from top experts, plenty of real-life details, and easy-to-understand guidelines for finding the best treatment options and practical solutions. The revolutionary message is one of hope for millions of people--and a joyous opportunity for a better life.

    Insightful, helpful, witty, and very practical. This book can change your life.
    --Daniel G. Amen, M.D., author of Change Your Brain, Change Your Life

    ... contains information that is just not available anywhere else. This book is sure to become the authoritative guide for couples dealing with ADD.
    --Patricia O. Quinn, M.D., Director, The National Center for Girls and Women with ADHD

    ...We expect this book will be the bible for all of us dealing with adult ADD.
    -- Elizabeth Weathers and Diane Hartson, moderators, ADD Spouse support group

    ... I can safely predict it will become as much an 'industry standard' as Driven to Distraction.
    --David Edelberg, M.D., Medical Director, WholeHealth Chicago

    ... The book is well researched, reader friendly, and includes insights and perspectives from a Who's Who of professionals. For couples struggling with ADHD, it's the season's new must-have book and bound to become a classic.
    --Michele Novotni, Ph.D. Psychologist, Coach

    Confirmatory brain neuroscience answers this speculation about Adult ADHD: It s a real problem with real and painful challenges, not a belief system.
    -- Charles Parker, DO, Medical Director, CorePsych, author of Deep Recovery

    ... Gina Pera has combined a real feel for the disorder with sound reporting skills and the spice of those who tell the story best: the couples themselves.
    -- Margaret D. Weiss, M.D., Ph.D., Head, Provincial ADHD Program, British Columbia, Canada

    ... Gina Pera has been there and has authored a guide that offers understanding for the confused, practical strategies for the frustrated, and hope for the despondent. This book will be a lifesaver for both partners.
    -- Ari Tuckman, Psy.D., M.B.A., author of Integrative Treatment for Adult ADHD ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars The "Our Bodies, Ourselves" for Adults w/ADD, October 23, 2008
    I recalled the shock of recognition and thrill of a first encounter with the unadulterated truth that I had when I read "Our Bodies, Ourselves" as a thirteen year old girl, as I read "Is it You, Me or Adult ADD? by Gina Pera.

    As a 43 year old women with ADD who was married to a man with untreated ADD, the book rang so true and touched upon so many of our struggles that it was, at times, disorienting to read them detailed in the pages of a book written by an author who did not know my story. Often, I could only read a few pages before needing to take a break and let the enormity of the suffering and needless pain that ADHD causes in adult relationships to sink in.

    For too many of us, the real tragedy comes from having seen expert couple therapists for years desperately trying to make our relationships work, while the good will, intimacy and benefit of the doubt was drained out of the marriage as each new round of therapy failed, all the while, never being offered the information provided in this book that could have put us on the path to understanding.

    Gina Pera lays out the necessary truth about the impact of adult ADD on relationships and provides a framework to view the issues not as insurmountable, but rather as typical for our population and, in fact, manageable with the right treatment for ADD.

    I urge all couples with children who have AD/HD to read this book. Because research tells us that this disorder is genetic, you and your partner may be affected by AD/HD without knowing it and your relationship may be needlessly imperiled. You may save your marriage by discovering how ADD plays itself out in relationships and learning how to address those issues in your own home.

    This book provides clear descriptions of the classic dynamics that often underlie the interactions of adults with AD/HD and concrete strategies to preserve the respect and love that you have for your partner while working to make the relationship fulfilling for both of you.

    I am in awe of Gina Pera's writing and her ability to harness what looks and sometimes felt like unrelated, distressing events into a cogent, comprehensive portrait that depicts in a devastatingly accurate fashion what life and love feels like being married to an adult with ADHD.

    Thanks to this book, we, adults with ADD, can understand the emotional consequences of our behavior, accept responsibility for it and work to empathize with and advocate for our children, spouses and, most importantly, ourselves with a clear mind and full heart.

    5-0 out of 5 stars FINALLY, a book written for the non-ADHD partner, October 22, 2008
    Thank you Gina Pera!

    Finally, a book written for non-ADHD partners. The author spent 8 years researching ADHD, and this text is clearly a masterpiece of her great efforts. The book is filled with examples, tips, and resources like no other book offers to date.

    Most books on the market are written for a person with ADHD, and not chiefly for partners thereof. Perhaps there should be more support groups available, such as, ADD/ADHD Anonymous. Dr. Schwartz offers good help online at; however, there are limits. In fact, this is where the author was found [on Dr.Schwartz's article/comment page].

    The book was received today, and there was so much to read AND highlight. The text offers a great "peace of mind," helps one realize the truth, without blaming one's self, and helps to comprehend the complexity of ADHD symptoms. Readers are reminded not to blame the person, but rather to understand or manage the "symptom," as Dr.Amen suggests.

    There are stories from lives of others that clarify multiple topics, which also projects what non-ADHD partners are facing because others, including friends or family, may rarely understand. The best part is the included "Tip Sheets" to help manage, cope, and/or not take the termed ADHD-bait.

    If your partner has ADD/ADHD, whether it is diagnosed or not, this text is highly recommended. As one reviewer noted, "Sure to become the authoritative guide..." Also, as reflected by the diagnosis, some ADHD'ers exhibit strong symptoms of denial, including remorse or blame when others [or their partner] attempts to discuss the illness.

    Warning: Anger, and other unnecessary conflicts may occur as a result of having this text or others present. Therefore, if you have been a heavy sufferer, it may be best to put a book cover on this, and keep it to yourself while reading and learning more. Remember that AWARENESS alone can change everything. This book gives you the insight and wisdom to see what you may not have realized, and helps sufferers not to *react* to symptoms, but to recognize them, while offering solutions.

    Those with the diagnosis may also benefit from this book if they are able to read with an open mind. Often, it can be difficult for anyone to [look in the mirror and] understand how they are affecting those around them. Indeed, this book is an excellent first step for those whom may or may not be diagnosed. It will offer unique insights into that which may be unconsidered. Finally, the roller coaster can be stopped and parked forever.

    In closing, we wish the very best to everyone, and send a very special thanks to the author.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Help for all the partners of people with ADD!, September 8, 2008
    This book will do for partners of people with ADHD what "Driven to Distraction" did for people who themselves have ADHD. It's easy to read and has enough medical and scientific information to explain what needs to be explained but not so much to bore the reader. You can go straight through the chapters in order or take advantage of the chapter to chapter references and pick up what you're looking for in the order that works best for you. I love this book! I'll be sharing the info with my clients and their spouses... and especially with the people who call and want me to "fix" their other.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Compassion for those with ADHD...but a focus on their partners, July 16, 2009
    Okay, my story...My husband and I were married for 10 years before he was diagnosed with Adult ADHD, inattentive subtype. During that decade, I transformed from a relatively spontaneous, moderately adventurous, and generally flexible wife to a rigid, super-anxious, and critical one. Even though he tended to walk out of the room while I was talking, ran us into debt, forget plans, misremembered conversations/decisions we made together, etc., we both pretty much thought the whole thing was my fault because I was so negative all the time. I stuck with it, because I love my husband and because I didn't want my son to grow up with divorced parents, like I did. Even so, I was unhappy enough to start thinking about divorce and I definitely felt like I was going crazy.

    Fortunately, my husband's best friend told him that he probably had ADHD and my husband was diagnosed and started taking medication at age 39. It was not a cure-all, but it let us get some traction on the situation and finally convinced us to get some marriage counseling. Three years later, we are not entirely out of the woods, but I think we will make it.

    One very frustrating thing about the experience was the utter lack of support out there for spouses/partners of those with ADHD. I honestly adore my husband and I know that he needs a lot of support and love from me, but I could have used some support too. Even though I knew/know something about the effects of ADHD on his life and mind, I had a hard time putting in the necessary work to make things better because I was exhausted, demoralized and isolated. He got meds and counseling. I got no meds and urgings from websites and counselors to "help him be organized" and "reduce my negative affect so he could rebuild his self-esteem." I did/do my best, but it is hard. I couldn't find a site that discussed the effects on me or his responsibilities to help heal the marriage (just mine).

    Man, I wish I had this book three years ago...ten years ago. It really is for me and people like me...people who love their partners and want things to work out, but need a sense of support and community. At parts I laughed out loud, but sometimes I was stunned and saddened by how much I had put up with and how bad my life and marriage had gotten before it started to (slowly) get better. My husband picked it up one day and spent the next few days reading it all the way through. Since he is really one of the most wonderful people in the world, he responded with a renewed sense of purpose to figure out how to use compensatory strategies (calendars, alarms, checklists, etc.) and to hire organizers, coaches, etc. (with my okay just because I needed to take over our finances). He came home with flowers after he finished, hugged me, and said that he never really understood the impact that ADHD had on me. He was surprised when he'd read quotes from spouses in the book that were almost identical to things I'd said recently or even years before. Just the hug and the compassion was amazing. I felt validated and appreciated...not a common thing in the past decade, unfortunately.

    BTW: I disagree with reviewers who think the author treats those with ADHD without compassion or respect. It seem very loving to me. That said, if your partner is still dealing with a new diagnosis or is touchy about it, I wouldn't just dump the book in his or her lap. It really is written for spouses and partners. It does not pull punches when it describes how tough ADHD can be for us. In a way, I feel that both my husband and I have ADHD and that now I am getting some help too. I agree that she is pro-meds, but she makes that clear right from the outset and a lot of the book had nothing to do with treatment. I am pro-meds for adults too, at least for a trial run, so that part didn't bother me. Without meds, I just don't know what we would have done.

    In short, I loved this book. I thought I'd read everything there was to find about ADHD, but I learned things in every chapter. I am going to order a couple copies for the spouses of my husband's family members, many of whom have similar profiles. I'm even thinking of starting a support group in my area, or finding someone qualified to lead one. I think this book could save marriages, relationships, and some people's sanity.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Probably the best ADHD book I've read, January 10, 2009
    The title of my review probably sounds like hype but it's not. I've read 20+ ADHD books (Hallowell, Ratey, Amen et al) and "Is it you me or adult ADD" is the most practical and "real world" of them all.

    It's the best balance of real-world anecdotes, situations, issues that ADHD'ers (and those who know ADHD'ers) face, science, and practical solutions, as well as many insights into ADHD that I've seen no where else.

    Even though I have ADHD, have read so many books about it, and even regularly attend an ADHD support group, I had at least a half dozen "ah-ha" moments within the first few chapters. I learned about things that I had no idea were related to ADHD. It was really an eye-opener and has helped me live that much better now that I understand why and how it's related to my ADHD.

    To me the book is also very practical and real world. It tells it like it is with no sugar coating--both the good and the bad. There's a trend in some ADHD circles to try to paint ADHD as a "gift". Take it from me, having ADHD sucks, it's not a gift. Of course we want to be rid of the stigmas and discrimination (both by people and by the insurance industry) but trying to spin ADHD as a gift just goes too far into la-la-land in my opinion. This book doesn't do that. It talks about what ADHD is, how it effects those who have it, and those who have to deal with those who have it. As I said, very real world, practical, and helpful.

    Denial is one major thing this book talks about that I don't recall reading about before. Yes, many of us with ADHD deny we have it, or even if we admit we have it, we think we're doing fine without treatment. These are both unfortunate situations which can have bad if not dire consequences. (Witness the higher accident rates, drug abuse and crime rates of those with *UNTREATED* ADHD.) Amazingly enough, when you treat ADHD these things largely go away and life improves for everyone involved. Getting through the denial may be a major stumbling block though, and this book addresses dealing with that.

    I can't say enough good things about this book. If you have ADHD read this book. If you are in a relationship with someone with ADHD read this book. If you're related to someone with ADHD read this book. If you know someone with ADHD read this book and get them a copy.

    If you know someone who's life seems like a complete mess, is constantly late, is always losing things, seems distracted or day-dreamy, often says inappropriate things, may be moody or angry a lot, can't seem to stick to something to completion, it's likely that this person has ADHD.

    Get them this book or read it yourself and see if maybe you can help them face and deal with their ADHD. You may, in no exaggerated terms, save their life.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Wish I'd had this book 16 years ago!, November 28, 2008
    Plenty has been written about ADHD in children and in adults. All the focus has been on the person with the disorder. What hasn't been effectively addressed is how it affects loved ones of people with ADHD. Nor has there been much hope or help for non-ADHD partners until now.

    Reading this book was like a look back into my former marriage. My ex-husband has had ADHD his entire life. During our 12 years together, we - and our children - suffered so many of the situations Ms. Pera describes in her book.

    The first part of the book sets up what it's like to ride the ADHD Roller Coaster. Just reading the stories from the support group members caused my adrenaline to surge, like it used to regularly. Believe me, the partners of folks with this brain disorder tell their stories well. The hyper-vigilance, walking on eggshells, watching every penny - it's such a hard way to live.

    The surveys the author used are also very revealing. You get a pretty good picture of the challenges faced by partners of folks with ADHD and how the disorder colors every facet of life - eating, sleeping, parenting, sex, finances - and the rest of the world can't understand. You feel positively bereft and, at best, nobody else understands. At worst - and this is standard operating procedure - any problems are entirely your fault.

    In case you think I'm dissing folks with this disorder, you need to know how attractive, intelligent, creative, funny and talented they are. However, one does get sucked in by their hyper-focus on the prospective partner and the budding relationship. Then suddenly after the intended is "caught," that "knight-in-shining-armor" disappears and left in his (or her) place is somebody who has no concept of how to relate anymore because they've now moved on to the next person or project that catches their attention and they hyper-focus on that to the exclusion of everything else in their lives.

    I spent years in therapy, both with and without the ex, and read many books on the subject to no avail. The problem was that none of the therapists or books took the next step into the challenges faced by partners and to offer effective coping strategies. Solutions were trite and useless. Communication tips for couples where one partner can't focus long enough to say good morning are no help whatsoever.

    This book, "Is It You, Me, or Adult A.D.D?" frames the problems differently than any other I've read and gives solid, multi-pronged, science-based solutions. It explains, in layman's terms, how neurotransmitters in the brain work and how medication can make a huge difference by physically getting those messages across those synapses. As the author explains, medication can be to the ADHD brain what eyeglasses are to the myopic eye. There's no more shame in appropriately using medication than the appropriate use of eyeglasses.

    There is no one size fits all solution and Ms. Pera makes an in-depth exploration of other therapies that support and supplement medication for those who find that to be a good option.

    The best part of the book, however, is the advice and resources for finding a therapist who truly understands the disorder and its effects on a relationship. We spent thousands of dollars on therapists who seemed to know less about the disorder than we did. There was no guidance for people in choosing somebody to help back then.

    I particularly appreciate the coping and self-care strategies offered. If these had been available to me ten years ago, I might be in better health today.

    Though there's no way I could go back to my ex - too much hurtful water under that bridge - I wonder what could have been if we'd had a resource like this book at the beginning.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Changed my life, December 6, 2008
    Are you and your partner fighting all the time? Does it seem like it's always one thing or another? Things get close to settling down, but it never happens? Have you given up your hobbies, your friends? Starting to walk on eggshells? If you just KNOW something is amiss, READ THIS BOOK!! There's so much to say about this book. I could write volumes. It educates you, validates your thoughts and feelings, and helps you realize "It's not your fault". The author describes the stages you go through when you are being overpowered by your partner's symptomatic ADHD behaviors that leave you feeling hurt, lonely and resentful. The great thing about this book is that it takes you beyond pinpointing the issue and takes you to a place of healing and peace. Through Ms. Pera's thoughtful guidance, you are able to take back control of your life and have the strength, drive and courage to rebuild yourself, rediscover your passion and commitment for your partner, and take a lead role in shaping the course of your relationship in the future. My partner and I are not there yet, but with the new insight this book has given me, I know it's just a matter of time. The quality of the book itself should also be noted. It is well designed and printed on high quality paper. The author has included many subheadings, making it easy to access content fast. There are plenty of narratives, advice and information in the numerous boxes and sidebars. It is nicely organized and easy to read.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Gina Pera's Roller Coaster - An ADDer Review, September 10, 2008
    I have been anticipating reading Gina's book for some time. She is a marvelous woman who truly cares about people with ADHD and the people who are related to us.

    I knew her book would be good, but I had no idea what I would be getting into by reading through it. Much of it was like reading via a mirror into my soul and if you know Gina, she doesn't mince words or try to be overly diplomatic (like some people I know = me).

    Before I started read Gina's book I joked with her about how thick it is, but I tell you what, once I opened it, I could not stop reading it. I am really tired at this point because I have not been able to fully sleep until I finished it and I know I will have to reread several parts.

    Gina has written a book for the ages and I have never read any book as thorough, evaluating all the aspects of adult ADD/ADHD. She explains not only the common symptoms, but also the symptoms that show up in smaller groups of people with ADD. She tells us of how to train our brains and why. I really liked how she broke down each individual symptom and gives us rational easy to understand explanations for getting through and working through them. You finish reading this book and realize the truth and that truth is that you are not doomed, but you will be doomed if you don't do something about it for yourself and your partner. She sees relationships as teams, both individuals having equal rolls to play while still remaining individuals with dreams, goals and desires.

    For me, the most important part of this book is about seeking out the right therapist - how and why. I found this to be the most important part because therapy is what has helped me the most to overcome the past and learn copings skills for a better future. I really can't wait to start working many of these strategies into my life.

    Gina, thank you so much for the gift of this book, it will be my most treasured companion (next to Joan) for a long time to come, you were right, it truly is a `one stop shop for information on adult ADHD', but let me add that this book should not simply be considered for those who are in a relationship already. Even if you are single and seeking a companion, "Is it You, Me, or Adult A.D.D.?" is a must and will save you so much unnecessary heartache in the future and will help you with your daily life already. Trust me!

    Bryan Hutchinson
    Author of:

    One Boy's Struggle: A Memoir: Surviving Life Undiagnosed ADD

    5-0 out of 5 stars AD/HD in Adults no longer taken lightly, March 16, 2009
    Gina's book has transformed the way we have looked at the family challenges that have plagued us since the day we married. Thanks to this new understanding we have the clarity we need to go forward.

    Ignoring the reality of my husband's adult ADD has caused us all a great deal of emotional pain and life disappointments. It was so confusing that someone could be such a "good guy", swearing love and devotion AND in denial about frequent behavior that was at best inconsiderate and frequently just plain mean.

    We are hopeful about capitalizing on the commitment we have had toward each other while finally seeing some real improvement in the possibility of smoother marital interaction.

    I am especially grateful that my husband chose to take the book with him to work and read most of it (after my reading parts of it to him that were so clearly "us"). He has apologized for what my life has been like married to him, because of his ADD, his first step in acknowledging that the relationship problems were stemming mainly from him, and not because I was "too sensitive".

    A world changing book. A must read, especially for those involved in behavioral health. Marriage therapy that does not take adult ADD into consideration is worse than useless, as the adaptive and stress related behaviors of the partner of the adult with ADD can be focused on to everyone's detriment.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Indispensable for the non-ADHD partner, July 28, 2010
    If not for this book, my spouse's ADHD would have destroyed our marriage a long time ago. ADHD in a marriage is a big challenge, but the struggles and needs of the non-ADHD partner are very different from those of the person with ADHD. Ms. Pera's book is the first (and AFAIK the *only*) book to address these specific concerns, and she does so with great competence, humor and empathy - for BOTH partners.

    The book is filled with practical advice and strategies that actually WORK - both to limit the damage ADHD does in the relationship, and to move forward towards a happier, healthier and less stressful life for both parties. The chapter on finding an ADHD-competent therapist is, just on its own, worth the entire cover price, and there is much more helpful information contained in these 350 pages. ... Read more

    16. Anam Cara: A Book of Celtic Wisdom
    by John O'Donohue
    list price: $14.00 -- our price: $14.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 006092943X
    Publisher: Harper Collins
    Sales Rank: 1888
    Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    From John O'Donohue, poet, philosopher, and scholar, comes a moving introduction of Celtic insights, stories, and teachings, hailed by Deepak Chopra as a "powerful and life-transforming experience". ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Poetic, Educational & Soul absorbing, September 16, 1999
    The magic about this book is that it centers completely on the definition of the human experience and all the emotions that it entails. In addition it gives us guidelines usually through poetic pieces and beautifully scripted prose on dealing with many of life's issues.

    I read most of this book on a flight back home to Ireland. I just couldn't put it down. As cynical and routine that life sometimes appears each of us has a yearning to break the mold, break the routine and deep down find our way, our reason for being on this earth. O'Donohue reminds us regardless of who we are and what the material world values us at - our soul has a yearning to belong and live life spontaneously and to avoid the clutter of routine and the depression of complacency.

    There are important lessons in this book on the areas of love, death, belonging, depression etc. Finding your significant other for example is something that happens through fate. Death should be celebrated for the life that it gave an individual and the journey it now presents to the soul. Depression should be addressed not through constant interactions with pyschologists, who yes help, but confronting that which caused the depression in the first place and absorbing it as a strength rather than a weakness.

    I was in Ireland for a funeral, which though a sad event, i left feeling happy - This book reminded me of what a great gift life really is.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Each sentence is a ponderable morsel., May 9, 1998
    Anam Cara: A Book of Celtic Wisdom is truly a work of art. Over the past three years, I have been working on discovering myself through self-help books, 12-step programs, religious study, and personal introspection. This book summed up everything I have learned (the hard way) during this time, and presented it in a beautiful package that was invigorating and thought-provoking to read. It was a pure joy. I began reading it in January, and have only just finished it last night, because each sentance was a ponderable morsel. Sometimes I would read a phrase five times over in order to fully grasp and apply it's meaning to my life. This is not a 70 mph trip through the McDonald's drive-thru, this is a seven course meal in Vienna, and every bite demands that you hold it in your mouth to savor it.

    Anam Cara is one of the best non-fiction books I have ever read. I plan to read it again in a year or so, because I know I will get new things out of it. I am already loaning it to a friend, and have a couple of others in mind I'd like to loan it to. I can't keep this from the ones I love.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Colors are the wounds of light, February 16, 2002
    In the Prologue, the author describes this book as "a phenomenology of friendship in a lyrical-speculative form." That is exactly what it is. It is one of the most compelling and lyrical works that I have read. It describes the "soul-friend" but more significantly it actually suggested the possibility of me becoming my own soul's friend. It is a powerful book, weaving Celtic mystical thought with a very accessible form of approaching self and soul -- all done in a rich, poetic language. It reads very well and John O'Donohue's erudition, poetic language and abiding compassion radiate every page.

    This book gave me strength and deep insight at a time when I was searching for both of these. I greatly appreciate this book's contribution to my own understanding of self and highly recommend it to you if, like me, you recognize that you are on a spiritual journey.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Hard to summarize, easy to read, challenging to ponder, October 12, 2004
    This book's best taken in small doses, a few paragraphs at a time. Each chapter's broken up into such sections, ideal for guiding meditation or inspiring reflection. It's a volume I gave away as a gift and re-purchased for myself after I read it, knowing that I'd return to its contents again and again. O'Donohue's learned much from those with whom he lives and talks and ministers, and his frequent interspersions of Celtic tradition and current Irish-language proverbs and observations attest to the continuity of the Gaelic worldview within the larger Anglo-American hegemony that dominates our lives.

    One of the best recommendations for this guide is its refusal to romanticize the rural and rooted tradition's hardships as well as its comforts. The author comes from the people he writes about, and this grounding keeps his suggestions--however philosophical they may soar--concise, honest, and free of cant. The respect for the life lived under the radar and the flyover culture by those committed to the land energizes these stories. Mixing tales and legends and theology from the Irish perspective with contemporary analogies, incidents, and insights, this book somehow avoids touchy-feely simpering or wishful fairie musings.

    It's appropriate for those of any faith, any skeptic, or any with spiritual longing. Written by a priest, but never limited to a Christian presentation, the transparent ecumenism of the author's approach speaks to any reader wondering about the Big Questions. Humbly, eloquently, and frankly, it's like having a personal confessor or soulmate with whom you can sit and listen companionably. There's no sloganeering, no ten steps to salvation in ten minutes a day, and no assurances of glib piety. With an open-hearted wonder, serious but never glum intelligence, and a generous capacity to listen to others and to nature, the wisdom distilled by the author here issues gradually, to be sipped rather than gulped. Antidotes for our fast-food generation, which will only work their healing power if we follow the prescriptions and elixirs gathered in its pages.

    5-0 out of 5 stars I am found, November 8, 1999
    As souls we explore life alone--and this has broken a lot of people, made them hurful and angry, sad. But still there has always been this need to express myself completely, to find those correct words, that absolute means of bridging all that separates me from another human being... It was a joy to have been recommended to this book, to see and think and reflect on where and how, why and for whom we can suffer so much alone when all we need to is express... A fantastic book, and one that I will share as a treasure not only as a tool for insight into my own soul, but as a gift to all of the special people in my life. It is a book about loving. Excellent!

    5-0 out of 5 stars This book is the best one i've read in a LONG time, November 14, 1999
    This book is a must read...i don't know how else to put it. It is full of wisdom and enlightenment, just reading it made me start feeling better about myself and my life. The poetry is beautiful. Even if you aren't interested in the celtic way of life, it will open you up to a whole new look on yourself and your life.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Unbelievably Enlightening, April 26, 2003
    Powerful, insightful and incredibly thought provoking. I have read many books on celtic wisdom and spiritual enlightenment, and have come across nothing like this. It opens the mind and body to the heart and soul, it encourages you to look within, not without, to improve yourself, and although this books does not make you do anything, it almost forces you to take a damn good look at yourself and really assess everything you think you are. You will be surprised at the results you get!
    There are so many self help books out there, but none come close to this! Well worth every penny, and please take time to read it, and read it over and over again, each time will show you something new. My copy is full of notes in the margin, underlined phrases or paragraphs, and serves as a useful place to turn when life gets you down!
    I think the only thing I didn't like was the slightly Christian accent from the author's point of view, especially as it relates to the Celts. This is not a big deal and can be overlooked for the quality and insight of the writing itself.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Philosophy, Poetry and Spirituality of Life, September 8, 2007
    John O'Donohue's best-selling "Anam Cara" is one of the most profound books I have read this year and is a must read for those searching for the deeper meaning of life, purpose and eternity. "Anam Cara" (soul friend) is a rare synthesis of philosophy, poetry, and spirituality with O'Donohue moving your mind, heart and soul on every page. He has packed so much into this book that you may, as I did, want to read just few pages a day.

    O'Donohue integrates philosophy, poetry, and spirituality as he reveals the mystery of friendship, the spirituality of the senses, the importance of solitude, the poetry of work, the beauty of aging, and our daily companion, death. You will be rewarded with uncommon wisdom and unique insights on each topic.

    On friendship, O'Donohue speaks to the circle of belonging, love being the nature of the soul, and the soul being the divine echo.

    On the senses - the holiness of the gaze, listening as worship, the language of touch, and the body being both the angel and mirror of the soul.

    On solitude - the world of the soul is secret, transfiguring the ego is to liberate the soul, the natural is to be holy, and one of the greatest sins is the unlived life.

    On work - the expression of the soul, weakness and power, the false trap of belonging, work and imagination, and how heartful work brings beauty.

    On aging - time as a circle, our harvest, memories, passion and aging, wisdom as poise and grace, and the freedom aging brings.

    And death - the unknown companion, the faces of death in everyday life, death as the root of fear
    the dead are our nearest neighbors, birth as death, and how the dead bless us.

    "Anam Cara" is a beautiful book that will increase your understanding of yourself, your relationships, the world around you, and how we relate to the divine in all aspects of life.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Warmth of a Celtic hearth, December 16, 2006
    Having some time and quietude during a recent power outage, I read this work again, and, in a time of some confusion and lack of direction, it was like holding the hands up to a hearth-fire. O'Donohue's lyrical skill with the pen, combined with some deep and personal convictions artfully unfolded, works to make this a book of prose nearly poetry. With all the Irish way with words, he wraps his ideas in beautiful language. While it is occasionally hard to get to the meat of what he has to say, this book encourages reading in an open, heedful way, as one would read poetry, letting the message sink in over time, rather than bringing a too-harsh (neon, as he himself would have it) light of ungraceful logic to passages which are constructed to enter by the way of beauty, rather than that of cut-and-dried science.

    I find O'Donohue's ideology very refreshing, as it is a glimpse of the fast-fading Irish spirituality, deeply Christian and theocentric in the beliefs laid down by Patrick, but still finding expression through the poeticism of ancient Celtic religion. Far from the lack of reverence and respect toward the Christian world which is found in the reconstructed realm of Celtic paganism, this worldview is whole and confident in itself, the way of a people for a long time, and not manipulated to fit one's own spiritual self-satisfaction. While I do not agree with everything I read here, it is because I come from another tradition, and I think that every Christian will find inspiration in the ideas here which transcend tradition and upbringing. And by no means are these words exclusive for Christians, either.

    Highly recommended, however not to be read as an insensitive factfinding-tour. Such is not the way of the intuitive Celtic mind.

    5-0 out of 5 stars wonderful, articulate, compassionate and thought provoking, July 14, 1999
    This book 'found' me at the airport while leaving for vacation - what a gift! Mr. O'Donohue conveys thoughts and feelings in such an articulate, eloquent way. It is a nonjudgemental exploration and celebration of the spirituality that lies within all of us. I would highly recommend this to anyone who thinks about and feels a sense of spirit but doesn't know how to talk about it with someone. This book moved me and touched me deeply. You'll read it more than once. ... Read more

    17. The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists
    by Neil Strauss
    Imitation Leather (2005-09-01)
    list price: $35.99 -- our price: $23.75
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0060554738
    Publisher: It Books
    Sales Rank: 1764
    Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    "This is one hugely entertaining book. I loved every page. And I will never let Neil Strauss within fifty feet of my wife."--A. J. Jacobs, Esquire

    Hidden somewhere, in nearly every major city in the world, is an underground seduction lair. And in these lairs, men trade the most devastatingly effective techniques ever invented to charm women. This is not fiction. These men really exist. They live together in houses known as Projects. And Neil Strauss, the bestselling author, spent two years living among them, using the pseudonym Style to protect his real-life identity. The result is one of the most explosive, witty, and controversial books of the year--guaranteed to change the lives of men and transform the way women understand the opposite sex forever.

    On his journey from AFC (average frustrated chump) to PUA (pick-up artist) to PUG (pick-up guru), Strauss not only shares scores of original seduction techniques but also has memorable encounters with the likes of Tom Cruise, Britney Spears, Paris Hilton, Heidi Fleiss, and Courtney Love. And then things really start to get strange – and passions lead to betrayals lead to violence. The Game is the story of one man’s transformation from frog to prince to prisoner in the most unforgettable book of the year. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Learn the Rules, but Don't Play "The Game"
    "The Game", at first, appears to be an informative, eye-opening, entertaining and DANGEROUS MANUAL ON HOW TO SEDUCE WOMEN. Deep within this controversial book, however, lies one of the best self improvement books available to man... as long as he understands and embraces the fundamental reality that the acquisition of confidence and personal worth are strictly required in order to succeed at the Game. A lot of low self esteem individuals will read this book and become, I believe, better men.

    And I completely understand the threat many women would feel by this material. But intelligent women are insulated from the manipulation at which many of the individuals featured in this story are so inept. Only the na�ve are at risk, as they always have been.

    Many people refer to this book as a manual on how to seduce women. But Neil Strauss, its author, never made such a claim. It was merely his honest and humorous account of his experience in the PUA (pickup artist) community. But Strauss is a talented writer. And, as such, he not only managed to make this the very entertaining and insightful manual everybody said it was, but has also given an extremely valuable tool to goodhearted men with benign goals - a tool that can be used with mutual benefit, without anyone getting hurt or played. In spite of other reviewers' claims to the contrary, Strauss does disclose the nature and vivid examples of the emotional and spiritual consequences PUAs reap when they manipulate people for narcissistic purposes.

    This endeavor began when Strauss, a writer for the New York Times, was given an assignment to write about the underground pickup artist community. Strauss was a skinny, balding intellectual who felt awkward around women and hadn't had much success with them prior. He immediately homed in on a character named Mystery and hit the mother load. Mystery was a modern day Casanova and widely considered, by the cumulative underground community of PUAs, to be the preeminent pickup artist in the world. Tom Cruise's seduction guru character in "Magnolia" was supposedly based on Mystery. By the time Strauss finished his assignment, he had transformed himself and assumed Mystery's title as tenth degree pickup master of the universe.

    As I began reading the book, I felt uneasy. Knowing this knowledge was out there felt akin to suddenly discovering a bunch of troubled kids figured out how to make nuclear weapons.

    I've always had great interest in psychology and what makes people do the things they do. I discovered my knowledge of psychology was pale in comparison to these guys. They (the serious ones) study contemporary literature on psychology and ancillary subjects, many of which involve some sort of self-improvement. The young, horny ones operate with one laser-focused mission: Bed women... bed as many "9+" women as possible! The more they bed, the more they validate themselves. But some, more enlightened ones, were simply looking to find the best wife/partner they possibly could.

    Strauss began as Mystery's student. After a few successes, he began to catch the eye of other PUAs to whom he quickly acclimated himself. He soaked up their knowledge like a sponge. At the end of two years, Strauss had studied, one-on-one, the methods of all the world's alleged greatest pickup artists and took that which best suited his own personal style and made it his own. In the process he became an underground, worshipped legend - Code Name: Style. But in the process, he also greatly strengthened his core person and acquired the Holy Grail: self-esteem. This book doesn't just contain the cumulative knowledge of the PUA community, but one hell of an entertaining story.

    It must be stated that the Game's contribution to much of Strauss' unstoppable success is mitigated by the fact that he was a writer for one of the most respected publications in the world, living in a mansion in the Hollywood Hills over Sunset Boulevard (a consequence of rising to the top of the PUA community), regularly interviewing celebrities and driving a nice car; most men with these assets aren't having issues dating. Still, I believe the majority of what he achieved was aided by his mastery of the basic principals of "The Game". And those are:

    1. You can only "game" a woman with whom you are prepared to fail (if you find yourself wanting her too badly, you'll never have her)
    2. Exude extreme confidence
    3. Demonstrate some kind of value, skill or talent NEAR your target, but not directly to her. Initially, pretend you don't even notice her.
    4. Win over her friends
    5. Be hard to get
    6. Be fun
    7. Handle challenges from competing men intellectually and psychologically. Never fight.
    8. Respond to any signs that she's not interested as if it were "no big deal"
    9. Once you have your target's attention, playfully insult ("neg") her. For example, "I like your hair, is that your natural color?" The more beautiful the woman, the more effective the neg is in garnering interest as they rarely hear comments of that nature.
    10. Once attraction has been established, punish any unwanted behavior by withdrawing and disinterest, but do not pout or have an attitude.
    11. Alternate between attraction and disinterest signals in a push-pull fashion until rapport is established

    There are many other rules, but those are the ones that stuck out to me.

    As I read, I found myself subconsciously adjusting my behavior, according to Game theory... and getting surprising results. Women that used to intimidate me with their "presence" were suddenly acting goofy/nervous around me. Could this be real? After I got over the initial excitement of my newfound knowledge, I began to get disappointed that the women that made ME goofy/nervous for so long could be so easily manipulated. I feared that I would start to lose respect for women. Who wants someone they don't respect?

    But by the time I got to the end, I realized that I wasn't manipulating anyone. I was simply carrying myself with more confidence. I found myself initiating conversations with strangers. There were no signs of neediness or social anxiety. I realized a man with a conscience can take a small portion of the knowledge shared in "The Game" to simply get over that first, most difficult hurdle of establishing rapport with a woman to whom he is attracted. I realized all anyone reading this book is really looking for is confidence. And many individuals that happen to gain a skill or talent as a result of his quest for a better sex life might just get some self esteem in the process. And that, I believe, is the greatest good of this material. The greater one's self esteem, the higher his goals.

    Knowledge is power. And it's only how that power is used that can reveal the nature of its possessor. The only real dangerous "players" out there are the ones whose cognitive reasoning and emotional maturity never fully develop and, at the same time, possess Oscar-worthy acting skills. Yeah, there are a few out there. But an intelligent woman knows when she's being played. And as Strauss saw repeatedly, manipulating and seducing a woman, in and of itself, is a victory that invariably leaves one hollow, still unfulfilled. In the end, your true self is what counts and is the only thing that can find and keep love.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Liquid Lounge Casanovas
    Strippers. Liquid lounge womanizers. It has you hooked in seconds. With each page turned, the alluring to creepy Casanova villains and victims come alive. Drinks are shaken not stirred. Jacuzzis overflowing with blondes. Miniskirts and thongs slice the heated air, hanging from the ceiling fan. The Game is a fast-paced, mesmerizing tale of a underground secret society. A study in social psychology, transformations from nerd to stud, emotional self-destruction, evolving into the creation of the seduction industry.

    Investigative journalist Neil Strauss of Rolling Stone/NY Times fame provides an exhilarating memoir as he submerses himself in the shadowy lair of pickup artists. Bizarre. Alluring. It`s a cult-like subculture of hipsters who've cracked the persuasion code. Lives dedicated to seducing as many women as possible. Unpredictable story lines. A flurry of celebs. Replete with a stunningly bizarre cast of narcissistic and yet colorful characters.

    But this is not a tale of the skills he obtains, or the women he seduces.

    It's a journey of self discovery. It's the tale of the men he befriends, lives with and works with in his quest of becoming a master pickup artist. It's about male bonding and relationships. It's about the emotional trauma the men experience by devoting their lives to the pick up artist endeavor.

    Neil's assignment is ironic. He was born a nerdish, unconfident geek. Despite having two bestsellers under his belt, he was a self-described chick repellant. Short, bald, skinny, with a big schnoz. Painfully shy, Neil is as miles away from a world-class womanizer. He schooled for 3 years at a womens college (Vassar) and never had a girlfriend.

    He dives in headfirst, burns the midnight oil reading three boxes of persuasion books. He studies aura, handwriting analysis, palm reading, magic tricks, and posts online all day in the seduction message boards. Taken under the wings of the self-proclaimed greatest pickup artists, he researches techniques, obsessively testing gaming theories in clubs seven days a week.

    His professional wingman is a charismatic diminutive figure, one Erick Von Markovick, aka Mystery. Mystery is king of the PUAs, with a worldwide following of disciples and students. An outlandish dresser and swashbuckling self-promoter, Mystery single-handedly invents an entire language of acronyms and jargon and field techniques for speed seduction. He adapts group dynamics, reverse psychology and neurolinguistic programming into conversation to subconsciously seduce, in a sleight of hand fashion. Under his tutoring, PUAs perfect a slavish dependency on routines and patterns until they become successful social marketing robots.

    In a scant two years, Neil transforms from journalist loner into "Style", a legendary seducer. The seduction community evolves from merely an anonymous online forum into an overnight lucrative business. Soon Mystery and Strauss are world known as the pre-eminent social scientists of attraction. Neil has them set up shop at Project Hollywood - holding court in Dean Martin's old Hollywood Hills mansion. The snake oil characters who frequent the sex frat include a bizarre cast of characters. Mystery, and various luminaries with handles like Juggler and Papa, Sweater, Matador, Juggler and J Dog. It becomes a revolving door for parties, celebs, and loose women. Home to an unknown number of roommates. Even Courtney Love moves in. Tom Cruise lectures Neil about their methods; Neil reminds him he did a movie glamorizing Neil's new lifestyle. (Magnolia). Heidi Fleiss gets in a competition to pick up women, and ends up losing, so she c*blocks Neil at every turn. Paris Hilton and Britney Spears get number closed for dates.

    But in the end, Neil discovers "The Game" is a dangerous obsessive Pandora's box. The players are fiercely competitive, full of Machiavellian tactics. The seductive power can corrupt, and bedding babes by the dozens may not lead to self satisfaction. And he loses himself in the insatiable elixir of seduction and lust.

    Spellbinding, can only describe the trials and tribulations inside the secret fraternity. Neil gets his bestseller, which has been optioned by a Hollywood studio. Despite the creepy environment, you sense he is a genuine decent human being. He is self-deprecating, and shares his failings and frustrations. He manages to retain sight in the bizarre nature of his surrounding in which he is now embedded. But in the end, he suffers dark reflections on who and what he has become. He feels hollow at the dehumanization of women...and of himself. He loses the respect of women the more successful he is at seducing them. He is passionate about women, but comes to hate being Style.

    And his posse of clandestine lady killers experience hedonistic highs, and devastating lows in the aftermath of their endeavors. The emotional toll on the crew is sobering. Project Hollywood becomes a commune infested with inter-community rivalries, dysfunctional neurotic behavior, and complete nervous breakdowns. It all eventually implodes. Neil meets his now steady girlfriend Lisa (the drummer in Courtney Love's band), and decides to retire Style.

    The Game is a raunchy expose of epic proportions of a seriously twisted subculture. Strauss pens it in an addictive seductive style. Magnificently crafted with characters and emotions. You share his inner journalist voice as if it's your own. Damn near impossible to put this book down.

    Others in the pick up genre you should pick up;
    The Mystery Method: How to Get Beautiful Women Into Bed

    Written by the guru of the seduction community. His encyclopedia-like book reads like a PHD college course on seduction. It is the template for what Strauss uses in the Game. It lays out the techniques, terminology, and methodology for anyone to learn.

    The Professional Bachelor Dating Guide - How to Exploit Her Inner Psycho
    A hilarious, devious sexual persuasion guide for hooking up, written by a psych doc lounge lizard who conquered the nightclubs for decades. It includes a world bachelor party vacation guide, and an asset protection guide to set up pre-marriage to shield you from divorce.

    I'd recommend you get all three. Prepare to get shocked, to laugh and to learn.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fascinating!!!
    I'm 52, married, don't know the author, have never heard of this secret society and still found this book fascinating. I say this because so many reviewers seem to have an agenda. From the arrival of this book b4 a business trip where my wife asked if I was going through another mid-life crisis, to the enjoyable but staccato writing style of Strauss, I read this book in pure fascination but half the time wondering if it was fiction. From reading these reviews it is clear there is basis for this book. But a Project Hollywood with male drama and Courtney Love thrown in for humor? Well, evidently it was true.

    This book should be read by all young men. Yes, some have the ability to approach women in some manner, but most DON'T have the ability in ANY manner. This book will help. Does it give contrived starting lines? Sure, but the point of the book is, "men need it" and when most people think of pick-up lines, these are actually exactly the opposite as more fully explained in the book. We are not conditioned to know the appropriate way to approach women! But apparently, we can learn.

    This book is educational on talking to women but also an interesting story about the crazy, neurotic lives these guys live. As to the author, his writing style is much too young for me but I did enjoy watching him weave this story and predict a bright journalistic career for him. I had previously read his biography of Jenna Jamison and enjoyed it also. I have not seen much publicity about this book. I heard about it from the short story in Esquire. I would love to read the NY Times article referenced in the book. I recommend this book for both men and women in their dating years but also recommend others read this that just want to learn about interpersonal relationships or read a zany life of needy men.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Well Written, Witty and a Little Weird...
    The majority of the negative reviews seem to come from people who feel it's their duty to turn up their noses at the sleeze 'n' cheese of the Pick-Up Artist Community. After all, a Society that exists for the sole purpose of seducing poor, defenseless club-hopping women isn't deserving of our respect.

    Maybe. But we're not reviewing a society. we're reviewing a book. And as such it's one of the most entertaining books I've ever read.

    Using a crisp, succinct and witty writing style, author Neil Strauss chronicles his inflitration of a secret society of Pick-Up Artists (PUAs) who prowl the Southern California coast. These men use all means of tools...from neuro-linguistic programming to gimmicks and play upon the insecurities of women as a means of getting them into bed. Along the way, he examines the psychology of women as a means of illustrating just why some of these tricks work.

    It should be noted that this is NOT a "How-To" book. But as a guy, it definitely gave me a deeper understanding about how women think (as well as some insight into the age-old question "What does SHE see in THAT guy?").

    But Strauss also gives you a deeper insight into the male brain, as he exposes many of the PUA Masters as men who simply are in constant need of validation and approval. While on one hand he marvels at the seeming ease in which the PUAs seduce and entice women, he acknowledges that there's something sad about these men.

    At the heart of this book, however, is Strauss's own story of transformation. In two years, he goes from a nerdy writer who could never get a date to a master of seduction, juggling a differnet woman every night of the week. Strauss deftly balances his own disbelief at his conquests with just the right mix of boastful wit and cynical foreboding.

    "The Game" is a humorous and well written account of a fascinating world populated by some interestng individuals. And while these people may not neccesarily be to your liking, the author does a fine job in showing that...regardless of gender...all we as human beings want is to belong.

    You may hate the players...but don't hate "The Game".

    5-0 out of 5 stars couldn't put it down - highly recommended
    When I first ran across this at the bookstore, I didn't care to pick it up. Pick up artistry seems so.... slimy! But a second time, I noticed the author's name, having read some of his celebrity bios (Dave Navarro, Marylin Manson, etc.) so I gave it a shot.

    It's definitely a fun and insightful read. I highly recommend it on many levels: the story itself, the anthropological aspect, and the author's inner journey.

    The story itself is a bizarre ride - alternately inspiring, hilarious, and even a bit frightening. It's very honest, and outright explicit in its discussions of male and female sexuality. It takes place across the globe (L.A., Las Vegas, Toronto, Miami, New York, Belgrade, parts of Russia, etc.) with a cast of bizarre characters that you quickly gain affection for. There's Mystery (the 6-foot-5 Crazy Canadian genius), Ross Jeffries (the aging eccentric), Dustin (the natural), Tyler Durden (the sociopath), Papa (the robot), Juggler (the poet), Extramask (the virgin turned pick up artist), rancid-cheese-feet girl, Katya (the destroyer), Courtney Love (flawed, strung out, but highly intelligent), Tom Cruise, Heidi Fleiss (the best female pick up artist), Britney Spears, and of course Lisa Leveridge (the ultimate rock & roll babe). All, even the "villans", are given empathy, though the author makes fairly clear who he likes and doesn't.

    Strauss strikes a clear theme in this book: one can use the pick up attitude and techniques to meet more women, have more sex, etc. But in the end, the most important lessons are personal: confidence can and MUST be learned, take care of yourself and your appearance (but don't worry about it too much), learn how to be a good communicator, and treat all others -- not just women -- with respect and dignity, while never forgetting to protect your own dignity. Techniques alone won't do anything to help you build a long-lasting monogamous relationship!

    What's also amusing about the book is that so many of these men are looking for women, but they wind up with... men! In many ways, this is a story about males who bond over their sexuality. Some may say it's homo-erotic. Frankly, I just think it's so rare today for heterosexual men to be honest about their vulnerability that we tend to associate any talk of this nature with gayness.

    The story also highlights the potential dangers of these ideas: if rote techniques get you laid, you tend to lose respect for the opposite sex. (Now we know how some women must feel!) On one hand, it is important to view women as equals, and to knock them off pedestals men fashion for them. But these techniques also can be very bad, as there are those who adopt these ideas not for sex or relationships, but for power. This lust for power can lead some into a sociopathic, cult-like state.

    As for those who question the truthfulness of this story, nearly all of the incidents are verifiable online or in print. Just Google or A9 search for them: the NY times story, the Tom Cruise interview in Rolling Stone, the Courtney Love interview, the Britney Spears interview, and Strauss' relationship with Lisa Leveridge. Even ABC Primetime did a segment (search for "Can studying turn geeks into Casasnovas?") on this subject, interviewing Strauss, and doing a "hidden camera" segment with one of Mystery's students.

    So yes, pick up artistry apparently does work, because people are attracted to and respect certain kinds of behaviour. The harder question, which I think Strauss clearly underlines, is: what are you going to do about it, once you've learned the game? Will you keep playing "the game", where the purpose in life is just to have a thousand shallow relationships? Or will you rise above it?

    5-0 out of 5 stars One of the few books I've found that was interesting enough to read completely
    Fascinating book about the PUA subculture. Love the black leather like binding and the red bookmark. Highly recommend reading for any man that wants to broaden his horizons.
    I've read similar books and I'll share some observations to aspiring PUA's : All the good PUA guys either are either somewhat naturally charismatic, or have higher education and / or have established careers with significant incomes. While I'm not suggesting that you have to be rich or handsome to be a successful PUA, you will need to be getting a paycheck somehow. And higher education is a definite plus. Odd how all these books seem to leave out this essential fact.

    Invest in yourself. Material things come to those that have self actualized.

    If something has a direct benefit to an individual or a class of people, and a theoretical, abstract, or amorphous benefit to everybody else, realize that the proponent's intentions are to benefit the former, not the latter, no matter what bull they try to feed you.

    Don't take proffered advice without a critical analysis. 90 % of all advice is intended to benefit the proponent, not the recipient. Actually, the number is probably closer to 97 but I don't want to come off as cynical.

    As a young man, you're on your own. Society divides and conquers. Unlike women who have advocates looking out for them (NOW, Women's Study Departments, government, non-profit organizations, political advocacy groups) almost no one is looking out for you. Know that few people have your best interests at heart. Your mother does. Your father probably does (if he stuck around). Your siblings are on your side. Everybody else worries about themselves.

    Remember, 97% of all advice is worthless. Take what you can use, and trash the rest.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Being from the world described in The Game, the book CAPTIVATED me
    I've known Neil for almost 3 years, and met him in LA soon after he got to know Mystery. I never knew Neil before he was "Style" so I can't attest to the drastic changes he's made in himself since first stumbling on my web site, which over the years has become the center of the community (references for which saturate the book and permeate the core). I've known him almost solely as "Style the pickup artist", and only later as "Neil Strauss the writer".

    I feel a very strong connection to many of the stories he details in The Game, even having only been present for a portion of their happenings, though being witness to almost all of them in one form or another. I know and have met just about every character in the book and it was an intense read, very surreal to me. I try not to judge people on their flaws, but the people throughout the book are as unique as he presents them and I feel that much closer to them now as acquaintances, peers, and friends.

    In a sense, The Game filled all the gaps for me and does so in a highly engrossing way. Maybe my perspective is skewed or I feel strongly affected by the book due to my connection to a lot of what it contains, but I can say for sure that Neil is an excellent writer and he weaves the tail of a pickup artist living through the community in an unforgettable way. Many might think he's "exposed" things that should not be exposed but the reality is there is no difference to exposing the basis of ideas and methods in the community than there is to exposing the fact that magazines like Cosmo or Vogue exist for women. Each sex has their "how to" manuals, resources and, yes, "community", and both for the same purpose - how to find, attract, and keep desirable members of the opposite sex.

    I will end this review by encourage anyone interested in the topic to read the book and anyone who doubts or objects to the content to read the book. ... Read more

    18. Why Men Love Bitches: From Doormat to Dreamgirl - A Woman's Guide to Holding Her Own in a Relationship
    by Sherry Argov
    list price: $15.95 -- our price: $9.57
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 1580627560
    Publisher: Adams Media
    Sales Rank: 1720
    Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Editorial Review

    Do you feel like you are too nice?

    Sherry Argov’s Why Men Love Bitches delivers a unique perspective as to why men are attracted to a strong woman who stands up for herself. With saucy detail on every page, this no-nonsense guide reveals why a strong woman is much more desirable than a "yes woman" who routinely sacrifices herself. The author provides compelling answers to the tough questions women often ask:

    -Why are men so romantic in the beginning and why do they change?

    -Why do men take nice girls for granted?

    -Why does a man respect a woman when she stands up for herself?

    Full of much-needed advice, hilarious real-life relationship scenarios, "she says/he thinks" tables, and the author’s unique "Attraction Principles," Why Men Love Bitches gives you bottom-line answers. It helps you know who you are, stand your ground, and relate to men on a whole new level. Once you’ve discovered the feisty attitude men find so magnetic, you’ll not only increase the romantic chemistry in the relationship-you’ll gain your man’s love and respect with far less effort. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars A Man's Perspective on this Book, January 23, 2004
    As a man who read this book, I have a new understanding of how and why my last girlfriend acted the way she did. She must have read this book!

    I have to say, I chased after her, just like the book says a man will do if you follow the rules it describes. But, (and this is a big BUT), eventually, I got tired of chasing her. Eventually I came to the huge realization that I didn't want to live the rest of my life this way, under her thumb, with her making all the rules for our relationship.

    Women have put up with men that act this way, and it drives you crazy, doesn't it? Don't you hate it when a guy doesn't call and acts like other things are more important than you are? This book could just as well have been written for men, and been titled, "Why Women Love Jerks."

    As I read this book, I thought that if everyone, men and women alike, followed the rules contained in it, this world would be full of a lot of single people. Mainly because it's all about one person in the relationship (in this case, women) acting aloof, not chasing men, and not showing men that they're afraid to lose them. If both sexes acted this way, no one would get in a relationship because both would never chase the other. (In the hopes that the other one will first. It's not going to happen!)

    All in all, this book seems to be written for women who have been hurt badly in the past and don't want to be hurt (or at least show that they're hurt) again. Anyone who has ever had the good fortune to have been in a GOOD relationship would never think of treating their mate like Sherry Argov suggests.

    I gave this book 2 stars, because what's in it WILL work. But if you have to use "trickery" like this to get a man to chase you, you'll get a relationship to match. It's better to be honest with one another. If it doesn't work out, then move on until you find that NICE person who will treat you right, "games" or not!

    5-0 out of 5 stars She understands the male mind.. ..a guy's view, January 1, 2006
    Firstly, in this book BITCH means Babe In Total Control Of Herself.

    She gives you priciples not 'rules' to transform from ignored or taken for granted doormat to relentlessly pursued dreamgirl, who is independent, strong, and not needy.

    Initially, I wondered if Sherry is a guy, because she is so onto us. To her credit she did interview many men, to get these deep insights. In fact she has compiled our secret playbook.

    I wonder if it is a good thing to have too many of our deep secrets in female hands, because it forces us to change our lazy relationship ways.

    There is a self improvement principle - you teach people how to treat you. So do what you have always done, and get what you always got, or teach them how to treat you right.

    So when Sherry suggests, acting a little aloof at first, this may seem counterintuitive, but it works. Staying out of relationship mode for a while, bypasses our natural defenses, and it works. Not giving away your personal power by being too much of a pleaser works. Communicating succinctly, I like that one.

    Probably the most important lesson from this book is the importance of communication. A woman who calls a guy on his behavior, is showing several powerful things, she demonstrates higher value by not accepting bad behavior, she is not afraid to convey her feelings even if this might offend the guy, she is not timid and unassertive, she keeps the lines of communication honest, and open.

    You will win some and lose some by following the advice in this book. Following this advice too rigidly will not work. It is a matter of finding a balance, and using what works for you. Think of this book as training wheels.

    This book, is very good, and I probably should not recommend it but I do.

    The bit about faking the orgasm, some reviewers don't like. As Sherry is a stand up comedian, this piece is just supposed to be humorous. In reality, you are teaching the guy that is he is already good enough, whereas some improvement might be required.

    Some of the anecdotal advice is funny but extreme. The booty call guy left standing in the rain outside his apartment got his just desserts, but the red panties in the laundry tactic was too much.

    My personal opinion, is we men are not that smart at non verbal communication, so things need to be spelled out more.

    We also have a limited capacity for processing verbal information, in fact we go into safety shut down after about 30 seconds of talking. After that point, we just nod and grunt as if we are following along. I hope you find this review helpful, and the book enjoyable.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Tool For Specific Cases, March 19, 2004
    I've read a lot of relationship self help books including "The Rules". This books is excellent. This book is for those women who have, yes...been burned or who have a tendency to lose themselves in a relationship. If you've been with someone for years and everything is fine..then you don't need help. If you've a string of great relationships then you probably don't need this book either. Unfortunately for many women out there...they have been burned or have a tendency to bend over backwards for a man and lose their self respect for the sake of their relationship. This book is for these women. It can serve as a tool for internalizing positive messages and methods for not being conducive for trampling via feet.

    Argov emphasies the time tested idea that you come first before anyone else. I've noticed that it is men who have given low marks to this book moreso than women. Once your read this book for yourself, you might see why. However, There are specific "tactics" she explains. It is far from trickery. And as even men have responded...her tactics work. Call them what you will, but there is little interaction between people which doesn't involve at least a little pre-planning, special manuvering, or cunning. Is this to say that when we read books about business...that those books are terrible because they use "trickery", manuvering and cunning to achieve company goals? Come on.

    Someone else mentioned that they didn't agree with a chapter about "faking an orgasm". Don't listen to that. Obviously that person did not even read the book or is not very bright because in that chapter, Argov is cleary making fun of the concept. She writes "I don't recommend that a woman fake an orgasm. This little lesson is a satire on the pressures women feel to perform...It is much more of a turn-on to a man when a woman is able to be herself and she's honest about what she likes and dislikes."(71)

    Finally, this book is not about playing games. Its about putting yourself first and taking responsibility for your own happiness, health, financial well-being, and rhythm. It is empowering and should be given to every woman who is having difficulty putting themself first and has a streak of nonfullfilling or short relationships (due to trying to be someone they are not or simply attracting feet).

    4-0 out of 5 stars Don't be a doormat -- read this book!, March 6, 2004
    This is such a great book that I've been recommending it to all of my female friends and family. It illustrates to you why your relationships current and past have failed miserably and lets you know what you're doing wrong as well as how to approach it from a better standpoint.

    Basically, the author explains that women have been taught to be nurturers; A woman finds a man worth loving, showers everything and anything on them and *surprise!* they're abandoned. Why does this happen? Because women expect men to give back what they're giving them and it just doesn't work that way -- at least not in the beginning of any relationship -- it has to be built to that point (my parents were like this after years of marriage.) This extreme generosity on womens' parts comes across as if they're strictly living for their man's happiness (sometimes that's true, too, unfortunately) and unfortunately that tells the man that they're doormats. Plain and simple.

    The book explains that men want an independent woman. They don't want a mother, a babysitter or a slave -- they lose interest in them way too fast and the mystery is gone. Sounds easy enough to understand but if you read the examples and follow a few tips you'll be very surprised with the results.

    For example, the old telephone bit. DON'T wait by the telephone for the guy you're seeing. Go out, have a life outside of him and call back when it fits YOUR schedule, not his. Don't rearrange your plans around him and most of all don't leave all decisions up to him. I've had friends I'm with that when the phone rings, they ignore all their guests to go suck up to the guy they're after on the phone. Wrong. You make time for your man when you have the time -- not stopping your life.
    The two things I was surprised to discover is: 1.) Women have been taught in the past that appearance is everything they need to find a man -- and nothing else matters. No wonder women have been treated like doormats! If personality and ambition are ignored there's nothing left but appearance and 2.) Women need to be taught to have a life outside of their boyfriends/mates/husbands. Women have been taught by society that they need a man to complete their lives SO MUCH that they end up desperate and it shows to the man they're dating. Plus, it's the reason you feel that emptiness in a relationship -- you've lived so much for him that you forgot about yourself. It's really sad when you realize how passive society has made women unconsciously or consciously and you need to take that back.

    I'll give you an example I used: A guy who asked me out called me up and said: "Well, you can drive over here since I'm closer to where we're going." The passive/old me who was desperate would say: "Okay! Anything to make you happy because God forbid, I don't want to lose you -- that's how desperate I am." What I said instead was: "No, you asked me out so come pick me up." Lo and behold what did he do? He picked me up. Don't be afraid to put your foot down -- of course, be cool about it, not nasty and it ALWAYS works.

    Making plans? Don't drop them because he asked you out, plan around him. I have a friend who lives for her boyfriend and really could use this book but she's so far gone that I've given up hope. I can't tell you how many times she's cancelled on me at the last second because he decided he wanted to go out at that time. Wrong. You hate when your friends do that to you and you're disgusted with them for their attitudes -- so why on earth would you do it? Besides, he's more likely to call back when you don't offer everything on a platter at once -- including your heart; You lose mystery with him when you do that and he loses interest.

    Then we come to a very important chapter: If he knows you're not putting him in a cage -- he'll try and put you in one. This is where the mother/babysitter aspect comes in. He calls the shots -- with everything. What movies you watch, where you go, how you live your life and quite frankly this is where women get into relationships and suddenly realize they're unhappy -- but don't know why. It's because they've made themselves become little slaves to their men's happiness and they're not getting it back. In my opinion, if you're in this kind of a relationship it's hardly fixable but there are ways around that. Another example in the book was one woman let a man do his wash at her place and he ended up expecting her to do it all the time. He would just bring it over and not even ask. So, one time she dropped a pair of red panties in with his whites and when everything came out pink she said: "Oh, I'm just not good at this kind of thing." What was the result? He said: "You are NEVER doing my wash again." Problem solved.

    In fact, I gave this to my mother (who is a widow dating) and she was very surprised to realize how much advantage her boyfriend was taking over her. He would plan parties at HER HOUSE and she would do all the cooking and he never helped her pay for any of it. When she began to protest, he fought her on it. What ended up happening is she booted him out the door. In some instances, like I said, it's not fixable. But, was he worth keeping? She decided "No" and she has told me she is much happier.

    Have a guy tell you that he wants to see you and other people? Don't get on the floor and beg for him -- tell him: "Don't let the door hit you on the ***. I had one guy do that to me. We went out and he told me that he was going to see this girl he knew at work. So, when we were driving back to my place I said: "I understand about your needs to see other people," and he nodded and got this smile on his face. Then I said: "So since you're going to see someone else on Saturday I just wanted you to know that I have a date, too." That smile melted off his face so fast I could have died laughing. What ended up happening? He was so distracted by the fact that I was going out on a date that he didn't enjoy his at all. The VERY next morning he called immediately and asked if I wanted to go out. I hemmed and hawed and said: "Well, I'm pretty tired from last night, so no, but I can go out Monday evening." I was showered with attention Monday. Trust me - it works.

    Now, in defense of some of the male postings here (which make me laugh of course) NOT ALL MEN ARE LIKE THIS. But unfortunately, there are guys out there who are. Think of this book as a great guideline to weed those out. If guys like this are playing games, the best thing to do is to play YOUR WAY. You may not end up with the right guy if you have to but your self esteem won't be shot in the end when it's over and that little player will have learned something. Real men DON'T play these games, but do love independence in women.

    The only chapter I don't agree with would be the one on faking an orgasm once you get to an intimate point in the relationship. If you can't be honest with your lover and are more worried about his ego then you're setting a trap for yourself. Healthy, sexual relationships are all about honesty -- each of you telling each other what you want. Neither one of you are going to figure it out eventually. That never happens. I got this info from "Mars and Venus in the Bedroom" which you can find on Explain what works, what doesn't, don't be harsh about it and it will all fall into place. Trust me on this one.

    So get this book if you've had your heart broken too many times. Remember, not all guys are like this but you can figure out which ones are (and... have a little fun with them in the meantime *devil grin here*) Real men don't play games with women and you'll figure out the real men from the weasels with this book. A MUST READ for you women out there sick of the games -- play them your own way! And trust me, it works!

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Witty Wake-up Call, October 11, 2002
    This is a must read book for all those women who find themselves being treated like yesterdays meatloaf. You know, you'll take it only if you can't have anything better, or you may just say forget it and chuck into the garbage. The author really hits home when she talks about the male appetite for a Bitchy Woman. It's true they do get more respect. I shared this book some friends of mine both male and female and I can't get it back. They keep asking me, "do you mind if I let my friend check it out?" So I fiqured out what everyone is getting for Christmas this year. It truely is an instruction manual to transform a doormat to dreamgirl. It's not always about looks. Attitude is why you see some women getting what they want while little Miss Nicey is home alone thinking "maybe if I bake these cookies just right..." As a man I say GO FOR IT LADIES! Check out the book and use the information to change your way of thinking. Heck, I'm even going to apply some of the techniques to my relationship. I hope they post this review, because I really, really enjoyed this book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars stop chasing him, make him chase you!!, September 18, 2002
    Sherry Argov is awesome! I've read a lot of relationship books and this is the first one that makes any real-life sense. Have you ever noticed how when you're not interested in a guy, you can't get him to leave you alone??! But the ones that you ARE into constantly play games.

    This book essentially teaches you how to reverse that pattern. The author shows you how to get the guy you want to chase after you, instead of the other way around. The best part is that it requires almost no effort on your part!

    This book really works. It was tough at first to follow the advice, because I kept wanting to try to please him. But we all know that men aren't like women, they don't appreciate all you do for them and they take it for granted. As soon as I stopped acting interested, he got his act together. Now he's calling all the time, taking me out to dinner, chasing after me . . . and I just sit back and enjoy it!

    4-0 out of 5 stars This book explains a lot, October 27, 2004
    Wow! Good advice. I know from experience that its always the guy you aren't that crazy about who persues you the most. Men love a challenge, why not have a little fun with it? I am a divorced 40 year old woman, and the men my age who are single seem to think that every woman wants to marry them. They are probably right, but I know that I'm a great catch too. Any man would be lucky to have me. This book introduces women to that concept, we as women need to place more value on ourselves. Think about it.. Are you pretty? Are you a good cook? Do you have a career? Are you funny? Are you caring? Are you an all-around good honest person? Then why shouldn't a man show you the respect that you deserve? Why should you have to bend over backwards to try to convince him that you are worth his time? This book isn't about tricking a man, or being mean or bitchy, it's about not selling yourself short. It's about knowing your worth, and having some self respect. Most of all, it's about getting him to give you the love and respect that all of us women deserve.
    I loved this book, it's being passed around to all of my single girlfriends, most can read it in a day or two. It's funny, interesting and insightful. It's one of those books that you just cant put down.

    4-0 out of 5 stars a new view, April 7, 2004
    OK! I was in a long term relationship and ended it because it wasn't working anymore. I was down and feeling sorry for myself when a friend said that I should read this book. I laughed when she told me the title. But I went out the next morning and bought it. I finished it in two days. It made me laugh and it opened my eyes to the guys point of view. When you buy this book (and you should) just remember that you dont want a guy to play games with you, so don't play games with them. You still have to be yourself no matter what. This book has a lot of good advise for everybody. My only advise is KEEP IT REAL, DON'T PRETEND TO BE SOMEONE YOU AREN'T!! You won't feel comfortable and you would only be hurting yourself.

    5-0 out of 5 stars This book saved my relationship! Thanks Sherry I owe you!!!, March 12, 2003
    I want to first thank Sherry Argov for writing this honest and very practical book on how to make your man change his attitude and not take you for granted. I have read many books on relationships, and this one is the only one that gives practical suggestions in plain language that you can actually understand. Not psychobabble like other books that I have tried to read and put down because I fell asleep. This book I read in one day and have been reading over and over again. Here's the 411: I am a clingy needy partner who nags and nags and nags because my man used to treat me well but all of a sudden changed almost overnight. I had no idea that what I was doing was causing him to tune me out. Men don't react to words, they react to actions. I stopped my nagging, and become a more independent person. And on top of that, have been acting like I don't care about the relationship. It has caught him off guard and now he is going out of his way to be with me and paying attention to me. The important points that I've learned from this book are; put yourself first, act as though you don't care too much about the relationship, do your own thing without him and he'll start thinking that he's losing you. Then sit back and watch him come to you and treat you better. The other thing is, you will feel better about yourself. Yes, this book gave me something that I needed all my life....Self Confidence!

    2-0 out of 5 stars A Man's Bad Experience from this book, March 20, 2005
    I had a girlfriend that I really liked. Then she started acting different, unavailable, and the sweetness I really liked in her changed to indifference.

    I saw this book in her house, and decided to read it myself.

    Advice to the ladies: If you think you're going to get anywhere with a man from playing games, you won't.

    Becaue I know how to be honest, I had a LONG talk with her about her sudden new behavior. She started to cry, and we were able to resolve it all, by really talking.

    This book does not teach a woman how to be real. It teaches you how to avoid pathetic men that treat women like trash.

    So if you want to have a great relationship, stop the games. If you are seeing a guy that treats you like trash, then move on.
    ... Read more

    19. The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work: A Practical Guide from the Country's Foremost Relationship Expert
    by John M. Gottman, Nan Silver
    list price: $15.00 -- our price: $10.20
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0609805797
    Publisher: Three Rivers Press
    Sales Rank: 1757
    Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    John Gottman has revolutionized the study of marriage by using rigorous scientific procedures to observe the habits of married couples in unprecedented detail over many years. Here is the culmination of his life's work: the seven principles that guide couples on the path toward a harmonious and long-lasting relationship. Packed with practical questionnaires and exercises, The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work is the definitive guide for anyone who wants their relationship to attain its highest potential. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars Science and Marriage going together like a horse and carriag, May 16, 1999
    After watching marriage-advice books catalyze the destruction of my first marriage, I did not think I would find myself reading any more of these books soon. But I heard an interview with Dr Gottman on National Public Radio and I was so impressed that I ran out, bought the book and read it. The thing that makes the book so good is that it is based on rigorous, scientific research (you know, set up an experiment, collect data, look for patterns in the data without inserting your own preconceptions and report it). Although I found that most of Dr. Gottman's findings were not particularly surprising, I still found the book to be extremely useful because out of the many possible things a person could do to improve their marriage, this book tells you which ones really matter. The book also gave me a good sense of the problems that are encountered in happy marriages. For example, about 60% of the conflicts that happily married couples have are unresolvable (perpetual). This fact alone would have helped my first marriage a lot considering all the good will that we burned up trying to solve problems that were not solvable. Dr Gottman found that happy couples accept that these problems are unresolvable and can learn to live with them without damaging their relationship. As an analogy he points out that people with bad elbows can live very rich and rewarding lives as long as they don't make playing tennis a central part of their lives. In summary this is a great book that people who don't like marriage advice books can enjoy (as well as those who do).

    4-0 out of 5 stars Debunks a million myths, offers sound advice, January 22, 2003
    I practiced psychotherapy in New York City for fourteen years. Though I had training as a marriage counselor in addition to my main training as a psychotherapist, I turned away more couples than I accepted. Most years, I didn't take on more than one or two couples, if that.

    There were many reasons for this, but fundamentally it was that marriage counseling rarely works. (About thirty-five to forty percent of the time, and half of those relapse, according to the best research.) I had made a vow when I went into training that I would never take on patients that I did not honestly believe I could help. (I can't say that I kept that vow sterling, being human--but I tried.) Most couples, I believed, could not be helped, so I didn't want to take their money or waste their time.

    In hard, cold truth, most of what most marriage counselors teach is just made up. Concocted. Without any sound research base. That's just a fact. When I was in training, I was utterly shocked at this. I was appalled at the simple-minded dogmatism of marriage-counseling orthodoxy.

    Most mental health care has a flimsier basis in research than its proponents admit (or even know, often), but in marriage counseling, the paucity of good research was almost total. (This evaluation of the low scientific basis of mental health care is not some private crackpot theory of mine; I wrote it up in my book "Cultures of Healing," which was published by the book-publishing arm of Scientific American in 1995 and will be republished, under a different title--"Health and Suffering in America: The Context and Content of Mental Health Care"--next year by Transaction Publishers/Rutgers. My point here is not to plug my book so much as to tell you that I know whereof I speak, and to encourage you to take my recommendation here seriously.)

    If I had known John Gottman's work back then, I would have had an entirely different approach to treating couples, and I would have taken more of them on. (No one in my three years of training ever mentioned Gottman, and I went to a pretty respectable institute. Gottman is just so at odds with conventional wisdom in the field that he wasn't even taken seriously.)

    Gottman's opinions--though he denies that they are opinions--are based on admirable, extensive, carefully analyzed research. While there is much to criticize methodologically about this research, and it certainly is nowhere near as conclusive as he says, at least he has done real work--not sat around making stuff up and pawning it off on students and patients. His is the best research of which I (now, many years later) know. Even if it isn't knock-down-drag-out conclusive, it is much better to have opinions based on extensive research and attempts to understand it rigorously than on no research, wild speculation, wishful thinking, and wooly feelings. Gotttman's opinions are very good, for the most part.

    This book does a nice job of conveying the gist of his work, in clear, practical form.

    In my experience, most marriage counselors do more harm than good and teach more made-up nonsense that practical wisdom. So unless you can find someone who trained with Gottman, I'd say DON'T go to a marriage counselor--buy this book.

    If you ARE seeing a marriage counselor, read this book and discuss with your counselor where his or her views differ. Ask for the basis for what your counselor does differently. Maybe it will make sense. But if your counselor is not open to the possibility of modifying his or her approach based on what you find valuable here, at least for your therapy, fire him. Or her. Whatever. Just run.

    Why only four stars? Two reasons: (1) Gottman does not allow that for some significant minority, the difficluties in marriage are much more complex and intractable. E.g., while he is right that ordinary neuroses themselves do not kill marriage--so long as you marry someone whose neuroses match up with yours, or who can tolerate yours--it is certainly the case that some mental illnesses, such as paranoia and borderline personality, make marriage extremely hard. (2) A little humility on Gottman's part would make this book much easier to read and leave more room for the intelligent, wise reader to disagree, modify, and make it his or her own. Gottman is much too taken with himself, and while his research is more extensive and careful than most anything else done in the field, marriage counseling ain't physics (or biology or even sociology), and it certainly should not be granted the authority Gottman claims for it.

    This isn't the final word on marriage, but it is about the best of the overly-many words that have heretofore been uttered.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Seriously consider "7" before all other books on this topic!, June 16, 2000
    A very reasonable as well as scientific approach to marriage. Many marriage-oriented books offer logical short-term band-aids (e.g., focusing on perceived Mars/Venus gender differences, communicating better, smoothing over conflicts) that make for a provocative read and/or admirable goals, but by and large fail in the long-run to resuscitate shaky marriages. Gottman creates a path for marital success via theories and exercises with an established track record for success. Many people wouldn't think that a fit marriage has to be exercised regularly, no less than one's body through regular workouts. Gottman's book serves as the ultimate guide to marital fitness, yet is a valuable read even if you are unmarried or have already experienced a failed marriage.

    Good marriages don't necessarily have less conflicts than bad ones. Gottman gets under the surface and digs into such deeper issues as the maintaining of HONOR and RESPECT for your partner in the heat of all-too-common battles. Along the way he punches holes in a lot of marriage-counseling paradigms. In short, this book can improve a good marriage (or any similiar commitment between two people), heal a salvagable one, or explain why a bad one got to or beyond the point of no return. Or even serve as a form of CRUCIAL pre-marital counseling.

    My question, why isn't there a mandatory course in marriage at the high school level that incorporates Gottman's research? Wouldn't the knowledge gained be of as much or more importance than any other accumulated as teenagers head into adulthood? I consider topics such as those raised by Gottman to be of enormous value for my daughters to read (and discuss!) when they reach their mid-teens...better too early than too late!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Finally, something that works! Saved our 27 yr. marriage, August 30, 1999
    The book is based upon scientific research, not oppinion. A VERY positive book. It gave us real hope. Not just another 'feel good' pop-psych book. It takes you inside the conflicts of real couples, and reveals the four marriage-killers, and the seven, very do-able skills to aquire to make a marriage work. I've read a lot of books trying to save my marriage. Some of them had some good things that truely helped. But it wasn't enough help. It never got to the root of the problem, and it left us both feeling like 'we have to completely change ourselves if we want to stay married'. Following the principles outlined in this book is FAR easier and FAR more effective than most other books I've read.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Practicing psychologist loves Dr. Gottman's work, June 14, 2000
    In my work as a psychologist for the last 14 years, marital problems are a most common presenting problem. They are usually most painful for clients, and most difficult for the mental health professional to treat. Yet, as one reviewer noted, most therapists really don't seem to know what to do! I agree, as I always ask my clients if they've previously seen a professional about marital problems, and whether it was helpful. Most give lukewarm responses at best. This is usually not because of the therapist's incompetence, but because of lack of proper training/continuing education. Unfortunately, many people then mistakenly assume that their relationship is doomed to fail. Not necessarily true! Any couple who has been dissatisfied with therapy might want to try either reading Dr. Gottman's book on their own, finding a psychologist or therapist who uses Dr. Gottman's work, or finding a therapist who is willing to learn it with them! In my experience, his work is simply the best, and it is based on a huge database of clinical experience with real people. Couples need an explanation of what is wrong, and specific, usable guidance about what to do. Dr. Gottman's work fits the bill perfectly. And, of course, even if you've never been in therapy or even considered it, the book is still quite useful. For those who are really into it, his students Dr.Howard Markman and Dr. Clifford Notarius have written some very useful books along the same lines. All three men have been on national television discussing these ideas. of course, their book are not aimed at people with such problems as continuing abuse or drug/alcohol problems. But for an ailing marriage or relationship, nothing beats his work or that of his students. I'm sure the books of Drs. Markman and Notarius available on Good luck!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Filled with tools my wife & I use to strengthen our marriage, September 11, 2003
    As a relationship and romance author, speaker, and coach I read a lot of books about dating, marriage, and romance. "Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work" is one of my top 10 favorites. The seven principles identified through Gottman's research are powerful and when coupled with the exercises that are included you get practical tools to strengthen your marriage.

    The first two chapters give you an insight into where the book is coming from. The information gleened from the Seattle Love Lab gives you hope for a successful marriage and identifies key warning signs for trouble in your relationship.

    The next seven chapters cover the principles in depth with skill building exercises to enhance your proficiency in each area. First is building a foundation with "Love Maps." Next is developing a compassion and caring with "Fondness and Admiration." Chapter 5 focuses on creating an intimate relationship by looking to your partner for help, support, and answers. Giving a higher value and priority to your partner follows allowing you to be influenced by them. The next three chapters cover problems in the marriage and how to handle them. Work, money, in-laws, [physical attraction], housework, and a new baby are the big six areas of conflict. Some problems are solvable and some not. How you handle the conflict is key. Next the book covers"Overcoming Gridlock" or creating a dialogue and point of acceptance for unsolvable problems. The final chapter is really about creating a shared vision for the marriage and the future of it.

    The benefits of marriage are well documented; longer life, more money, healthier children, and better [physical activity]. "Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work" gives you a practical guide for achieving those benefits, and more!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Couples' Counseling using Gottman, April 12, 2005
    As an intern in a neighborhood mental health clinic I used the Seven Principles book as a guide for many couples whose relationship was in distress. It was so effective that it became the basis for my Graduate Paper.
    There is one big warning. Chapter Two lists the signs of divorce. This list is dangerous to the relationship if one or both read it and get discouraged or scared. I recommend that any couselor who uses this book, take the time to discuss this chapter in depth and emphasize hope. LOTS of HOPE.
    Gottman is correct when he says that most couples come into counseling with one foot out the door already. Chapter Two can give them the final 'reason' to bolt out of the relationship.
    With that said, I highly recommend the use of this book as a guide to couples' therapy.
    Good Luck and Peace in our time, Gregg Max Psy.D.

    4-0 out of 5 stars HIGHLY RECOMMENDED FOR EVERY COUPLE, April 23, 2001
    Many people have asked me where to turn for advice when relationship problems begin. Many cannot afford the cost of counselling fees, and free services do not always have professional or qualified advisors. The question usually arises, "Are there any self-help books you would recommend?" This one will definitely be added to the list. "The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work" is based on some basic common sense values, yet they are not always practised in everyday life. Communication, honesty, trust and treating your partner with respect still top the list. With so many different types of families today, blended families, some legally married, some not, I would have prefered the authors make an effort to recognize all meaningful relationships with a commitment by titling the book, "the Seven Principles for Making Meaningful Relationships Work," and for this reason I gave the book four starts rather than five.

    Schools teach us some very important elements, but two areas where they fall short is failing to teach money management, and failing to teach relationship values and communication. Unless you have zero money or an endless supply of it, everyone needs to manage money and most of us will, at some point in time, develop an intimate relationship with another individual. Schools teach us how to read, write and all that good stuff, but they do not teach us how to survive in the REAL WORLD! With the high divorce rate and relationship failures, there is clear evidence many couples can certainly use some help and advice in both these areas.

    "The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work" focuses on developing strong, positive meaningful relationships and how to keep that nurturing love and respect for each other. Regardless of whether your relationship is in deep trouble or you simply want to enhance the wonderful relationship you have, I highly recommend this excellent self-help book. It is one of the best books on this topic in the marketplace - sincere best wishes for your future happiness.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Way better than I expected., January 12, 2004
    Actually, I'm not sure *what* I expected. I guess I figured I'd hear more of the same ~ that a failing marriage is all about communication. I feared the advice in this book would be vague at best, but I gave it a shot (thanks Amazon reviewers), and now I'm grateful to have found it.

    His first two chapters explain his findings after studying real life couples and how they interact. I found reading about other couples' arguments eye opening, as I sometimes saw myself in them. Being the objective observer in these cases allowed me to consider my own approach to arguments with my husband and instantly see how I unintentionally made things worse. The chapter "How I Predict Divorce" is especially helpfull. Our approach to an argument makes all the difference in the world, and it's so much more than "I understand what you're saying, but..." Gottman points out specific mistakes we all make that, over time, will chip away at the foundation of the relationship.

    Gottman reminds us, though, that learning how to fight isn't going to single handedly save the marriage. The rest of the book is dedicated to how couples behave when they aren't fighting. Are you really, truly friends? Do you honestly know what's important to one another? Do you influence each other in a positive way? Questions like these force us to examine our relationship in depth. He includes exercises in each chapter (I haven't done these personally...right now, I'm the only one who's reading up on marriage and conflict) to hammer home the point. Honestly, I liked this book so much, I'd be interested in doing some of the exercises, but I'm not so sure my husband would. Let me put it this way...we aren't in the same place yet.

    I highly recommend this book. I love the fact that Gottman can take his findings and share them with the reader in plain English. His approach is just right: informative and to the point.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Valuable insights into relationships!, April 18, 2002
    It is always a great pleasure to read Gottman's book. Though the title is a bit misleading (it reminds oneself too much of pop psychology and sounds a bit too simplified), the author greatly succeeds in laying out the basic principles for making marriage work.
    He is to be considered as THE leading marital psychologist and far outranks other authors, e.g. John Gray, by his meticulously applying research methods to relationships. This is the hallmark of the book: the advice given is rooted in his more than 30 years of clinical research about marriage problems. And: it clearly helps!
    The book is fun to read as it combines practical advice with highly interesting exercises which you can either do on your own or with your partner. Real life examples supplement and clarify the basic principles.
    One of the very few psychologists who can explain their findings in everyday language! I can also recommend his other books, e.g. the heart of parenting ... Read more

    20. The Language of Letting Go (Hazelden Meditation Series)
    by Melody Beattie
    list price: $16.95 -- our price: $11.53
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Isbn: 0894866370
    Publisher: Hazelden Publishing
    Sales Rank: 1883
    Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    Reflecting on the core issues of codependency, Melody Beattie encourages readers to trust themselves on their journey to self-care.Each meditation is filled with the personal warmth and insight Beattie brings to all of her books. ... Read more


    5-0 out of 5 stars This book has great sentimental value for me., March 29, 2002
    I had just read Ms. Beattie's famous/infamous "Codependent No More" and was inspired by her revolutionary ideas: I didn't have to depend on others for approval; I didn't have to base my self-worth on how helpful I was to friends; I didn't have to over-react to everything that happened in my life; I didn't have to think negatively about myself; if I didn't cause the problem then it wasn't my responsibility to fix it.

    As a teenager about to enter the "real world," it seemed all I heard from others was what I was "not" doing right. I should know more than I did and be more grateful for what I have; what college did I want to attend? Why wasn't I more ambitious? What's more, I was odd for being frightened by the fact that the world as I knew it was about to fall apart when all my friends moved away to college. Raised among drug addicts and alcoholics, it had been a difficult life thus far. And apparently, if what teachers told me was any indication, it would only get more difficult as I took on the responsibilities of being an adult. Melody's book gave me something that I so desperately needed and could find nowhere else: compassion.

    "Codependent No More" was so comforting that I wanted to "live" in its pages. I felt I had entered a new world, and I didn't want to leave. I wanted a way to remember everything I had learned from Melody Beattie about "owning my power" and being compassionate with myself. I wanted a way to "stay on track." I wanted a "guide," something of a daily ritual to keep myself mindful of the liberation she had introduced me to. To that end, I sent Melody Beattie a letter thanking her for her work and asking if she knew anything about "Codependents Anonymous" groups. I was honored to receive a reply, and she directed me to the national headquarters for CoDA. I began to go to the meetings at the now closed "Journey's Bookstore" in Beaverton, Oregon, and that is where I found this book, "The Language of Letting Go". These meditations helped keep me focused on what I had learned, and the meetings allowed me to share what I had learned. And this all enabled me to do what I had wanted: "live" in the pages of Melody's compassion.

    Melody is a poet. These meditations are not "scientific" or technical, and they are not even really "meditations" per se - they are more daily reminders, notes from Melody, on how to find happiness within oneself, and how to be compassionate with oneself when such happiness seems impossible. There is no "fancy" language that will necessitate a dictionary, and no unattainable goals are suggested. There are no come-ons to suggest that your life will not be complete unless you buy her other books. These meditations feel like letters from a friend, a friend who enjoys her life and is happy to share her personal insights and situations she has learned from; that is one of the most enjoyable things about this book, the personal stories Melody shares. There is no "finger pointing" in this book. I very faithfully read one meditation per day during the remainder of my last year of High School, and it made life bearable and gave me hope that things would get better (they did). The underlying message of this book could be: breathe, smile, relax, let go.

    If you are looking for a structured way to practice what you have learned from Melody's other books, I would recommend these meditations.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A lifeline, August 8, 1999
    I'll admit it -- I read this book through a crisis and a time of life that saw transitions everywhere. And while I'm still reeling from pain, and disbelief of the events that have happened to me in the past few years, I am already so much better from reading this book.

    When I find myself tempted by defeating behaviors, reading one passage reminds me why I don't want to continue down that road any longer.

    The funny thing is, I never saw myself as a codependent or as an addictive person. It doesn't matter what type of turmoil you're going through -- this book WILL remind you of a better way of life.

    It truly is a lifeline. I keep a copy at work and am discovering I'll need one at home to. If you struggle with any type of negativity, this book can help remind you that it's really going to be okay.

    4-0 out of 5 stars An excellent reference, April 11, 2006
    I had been thinking about buying a book on this topic for some time to further my self improvement process.

    This book is about so much more than letting go. It is also about personal power. When you let go of something, it loses its power to control you, and you move forward with your life in a more empowering way.

    This book is set up with daily meditations on different issues. If you were to open any page at random, you would probably find something very useful. It is easily read, and as you read can feel the shift in your perception, as these simple to follow principles make a lot of sense.

    If you are like most people, there are plenty of things you need to let go of, and you probably have no idea what some of these are. The first step is to identify that a change needs to be made.

    Here are many ideas you can use to improve your life. There are too many for me to list in a review, but here are a few biggies:

    Attachment, guilt, blame, seeking appoval, codependency, fear, doubt, controlling, family issues, perfection, martyrdom, denial, grief, anger, victimhood.

    You replace these non serving beliefs with something more empowering, as you start to practice detachment, self approval, develop an abundance mentality, an attitude of gratitude etc.

    There is a principle in psychology that if you do what you have always done, you will get what you have always gotten.

    So,let go and move forward. Imagine how pleased you will be when you have made a lasting change in your life. All lasting changes in your outer reality are accompanied by changes in internal perception.

    I highly recommend this book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Language of Letting Go, September 28, 2001
    I have owned a copy of 'The Language of Letting Go' since its original publication in 1996 and am still finding it useful and pertinent to my daily living. I bought the book at a time when I needed some guidance and this book provided this and more. It has allowed me to understand that what I feel is both normal and natural and that I should not deny emotions and thoughts that inevitably surface.

    I have suffered from post-viral depression, stress from studying, loneliness and yes, co-dependency. Melody Beattie, in this book has helped me to realise that I shouldn't try to push my fears and needy emotions aside. Rather I have come to realise I should just let the feelings go, and realise I can't control everything in my life.

    I am still using the book, not everyday but when I feel I need to. Inevitably I find what I need in each daily meditation. This has always been a daily tonic to me.

    Recently I lent my book to a good friend who is going through a very rough time - She was involved in a bad car accident she was told she should have died in. Since that time she has suffered from an eating disorder and has tried to push her closest friends and family away from her, afraid that she could hurt us with her pain. I know this book has helped her enormously, she told me so. Now I'm buying one for her. I think this is probably the best gift I could give her.

    5-0 out of 5 stars This book keeps me inspired to be a better person., August 6, 1999
    I found this book not long after joining Al-Anon and establishing a daily devotional time. I was stuck in a long term emotionally abusive relationship and attempting to escape it. The Language of Letting Go showed me I deserved to be happy. It gave me so much hope for a better future. I still read it daily, its my bible. Thanks Melodie, this book helped me create a life!

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Language of Letting Go Cards - 50 Card Deck, June 15, 2005
    (Note: Amazon lumps all Language of Letting Go products together. This review refers to ISBN#1401903479 which is a 50 card deck based on the book of the same name.)

    "Today I will trust that the events occurring in my life are not random. My experiences aren't mistakes, and the Universe, my Higher Power, and life are not picking on me. I'm going through exactly what I need to go through to learn something valuable-something that will prepare me for the joy and love that I'm seeking." -from the Trusting in Life card

    Melody Beattie, the bestselling author of The Language of Letting Go, has created a 50 card deck reminding us that we can ask for and accept the healing energy of God and the Universe each and every day. Based on her bestselling book, this beautifully illustrated deck inspires both self empowerment and present moment awareness. By truly living in the present moment, we can allow life to happen instead of trying to force outcomes. Relinquishing regrets over the past and fears about the future, we can make the most of every day. The Language of Letting Go Cards gently prods us to take a closer look at the limiting beliefs we've adopted, providing an empowering affirmation on each card.

    A few of examples from the deck:

    Accepting Change

    "Today I will be open to the process of change. I will trust my Higher Power and believe that the place where I'll be dropped off is better than the place where I was picked up. I know that change is necessary to take me wherever I need to go."

    Approving of Myself

    "I will let go of my need for approval and my need to be liked. Instead, I will choose to like and approve of myself. The people who count (including me) will respect me when I'm true to who I really am."

    Maintaining Boundaries

    "Today I will gain a new awareness of those areas where I need healthier boundaries. I will release my na�ve assumption that the other person is always right. I will exchange that view for trusting and listening to myself, and setting and maintaining healthy boundaries."

    Rescuing Myself

    "Today I will not wait for someone to come to my aid. I'm not helpless. Although help may come, I'm my own rescuer. My relationships will dramatically improve when I stop rescuing others and stop expecting others to rescue me."

    The Language of Letting Go Cards are 5.7 x 3.9 x 1.3 inches on thick, sturdy card stock. The vibrant glossy images feature the unique artwork of Elizabeth Rosen, and capture the thematic essence of each message. There is no companion booklet for these cards, and it's not necessary to have read the book to use this inspiring deck. I recommend these cards for meditation and affirmation, and for use in conjunction with self-inquiry and journaling.

    (To see 6 card images from this deck, visit the Reviews section of

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Language of Letting Go, December 5, 1999
    This book of meditations gives you inspirational thoughts to begin your day with. A must read for anyone dealing with codependancy issues. In her words, Melody Beattie gives me a spoonful of wisdom every morning; a tonic to support me all day! For those busy people who don't have time: Slow down, relax, and take 5 minutes a day to do yourself some good!

    5-0 out of 5 stars I carry this book with me like a bible!, October 29, 1997
    Having read the book 5 years ago, I still pick up the book everyday, especially when I feel those codependent controlling emotions resurfacing. The book literally saved me from myself the self-defeating behavoirs of trying to control life. It has changed my life. My book is falling apart from use, it is my daily spiritual guidance and encouragement. I couldn't live without it. Thank you from a very codependent who was brought across that bridge into the light. This book has saved me, in financial crisis', in my love relationship, in every aspect of my life. It has taught me that I cannot control life. My screen saver here at work says, "You cannot control people or events... trust, believe and let it go, just let it go"! This book is powerful, a life saver.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Life on Lifes Terms, August 17, 2002
    Hello All,

    I bought this book on the advice of a 27yr veteran in Alanon. I've never regretted purchasing this book. The readings are insightful, and go hand in hand with another great read "The Courage To Change". I've yet to discover why Alanon has yet not recommended this book?! Trust me, this is one of the best daily readers you can get!

    I like this book so much, that I've given SEVERAL away as gifts to those that I love dearly. To this date, I've NEVER received a single complaint, only compliments on the depth and wisdom, of the words written by Melody Beatie. So, if you want a great daily reader, then I HIGHLY recommend this book. On yet another note, I just purchased "More language Of Letting Go" so, as soon as I've read a bit of it, I'll post my comments here.

    Ciao All!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Nice to find I am not the ONLY ONE, April 10, 1999
    Co Dependent No More helped me greatly. It was like a slap in the face and a big wake up call. So I had to buy this book as well! Because ,I could not let go of relationships in my life that had died long ago. I was obsessed with any and all people,upon knowing them for two minutes. This guide is very inspiring and helpful,helps you get through the day. Melody's books were suggested to me by an excellent Therapist. ... Read more

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