It’s Not You: 27 (Wrong) Reasons You’re Single by Sara Eckel

BLOG“Why are you single?”

Undoubtedly one of the most annoying questions ever asked, but it’s a question every person with a single status has been asked at some point.  In a world where coupling up is the standard, being single seems like a big mystery.  I mean, there’s gotta be a reason, right?  It’s become a common belief.  One that leads to the question “why are you single?” to be asked, but also for singles to endlessly analyze in an attempt to find an answer.

Sara Eckel examines and breaks down the twenty-seven most common reasons we’ve all heard at some point, such as: you’re too intimidating, you’re too picky, you’re too available, you’re too negative, you’re too desperate.  In her writing she develops a compelling argument and puts forth her own questions:

“What if your only ‘issue’ is the belief that you have them and that they’re keeping you from a relationship? What if you stopped defining yourself as someone who is afraid of intimacy or attracted to the wrong kind of man? What if you instead saw yourself as a flawed but basically loveable human being? What if the only reason you’re alone is you just haven’t met your partner yet?”

It’s Not You is an interesting and great read, one that many people will most likely relate too.  It is more geared towards women and the author draws from her own experiences.  I found it to be a refreshing take on the single life and dating in general.  Here is what this book isn’t:

“This book is not a guide for how to find a husband or wife – because I have no idea. It’s also not an action plan for renovating your soul so that you’ll be “ready” for love; if you’ve picked up this book, I’m sure you’re plenty ready. It’s not a tome from a know-it-all married lady – because seriously, I just met a dude, that’s it.”

Here is what it is:

“… it’s my attempt to clear away some of the societal muck that weighs us down and alienates us from our own instincts. This, of course, is not just a single-person problem – it’s an everybody problem. But when you’re single, there is so very much shit to wade through.”

It’s Not You: 27 (Wrong) Reasons You’re Single is a must read for anyone who has ever tried to answer the question “why am I still single?”

Favourite quote: “If you’re single and feel a void – if you find that career, friends, books, and travel are actually not enough – it’s not because you’re dizzy-brained or immature; it’s because you’re feeling a very legitimate need.”

Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari

BLOGThere are no longer any predetermined life paths.  Each of us is on our own.”

Modern Romance examines the benefits and challenges of dating in today’s technology centric world.  Along with NYU sociologist Eric Klinenberg, Aziz Ansari designed a research project consisting of interviews and focus groups from different cultures including the United States, France, Qatar, Tokyo and Buenos Aires.  He sets out to answer the question: with so many options and avenues to meet people, why is everyone so frustrated? Aziz Ansari provides historical comparisons, a thorough exploration of online dating, the benefits and drawbacks of technology, and examples of how it all differs across cultures.

Modern Romance offers a comprehensive study of the evolution of dating and the role of technology, both positive and negative.  Ansari takes an academic approach to the subject, and the book has a textbook style combined with Ansari’s trademark humour.  That in itself makes it very unique.  The topic is well researched and presented in a clear and organized way that is easy to read.  The book offers a lot of facts, statistics and research results along with valuable takeaways that may give the reader a better outlook on their approach to dating.  It is an educational and worthy read for anyone navigating the world of modern romance.

Favourite quote:We want something that’s very passionate, or boiling, from the get-go.  In the past, people weren’t looking for something boiling; they just needed some water.  Once they found it and committed to a life together, they did their best to heat things up.  Now, if things aren’t boiling, committing to marriage seems premature.”