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Jane Austen's Guide to Dating

3.48  ·  Rating Details ·  1,097 Ratings  ·  110 Reviews
"It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife." --Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

There was never a more astute chronicler of the hits and near-misses of love than Jane Austen. Now, she helps readers discover their inner heroines and get the guy in this witty book of romance and dating strategies.

Paperback, 304 pages
Published January 12th 2005 by Hachette Books
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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John Brooks
Nov 14, 2007 John Brooks rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: people who just love jane austen that much
Jessica is one of the best present-givers ever (and I know she takes pride in that). Last Christmas, along with my silver Ravenclaw bookmark clip, she gave me this book, partly as jab at me (duh) and partly because we both love Jane Austen (and Doctor Who marathons).

Jane Austen's Guide to Dating is, actually, a pretty insightful book about dating since Austen wrote such thorough, timeless archetypal characters who have thorough, timeless archetypal relationships (and no, there is no such thing a
Meredith (Austenesque Reviews)
Aug 30, 2009 Meredith (Austenesque Reviews) rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jane-austen
This is my first time reading a book about dating, it was not so much a self help book. It was more of a discussion of all the romantic characters in all six of Jane Austen's lovely novels. In the book you look at their relationships, personalities, and why it did or did not work out.

The book is broken down into ten chapters. Each chapter is a rule. Some of them are very helpful such as "If you like someone, make it clear that you do." In the chapter it stresses the point that you should not pl
This is going to sound really stupid, but I really didn't realise that this was an actual dating guide. I just thought it was another attention-seeking, non-literal book title, and would actually be a fictional story based around retelling a Jane Austen novel in a modern setting or something like that, which I'm a sucker for. But now that I know the truth, I am absolutely mortified and panic-strickenly creating theories about what must be running through the head of my charity-shop co-worker who ...more
Jul 24, 2015 Mary rated it did not like it
This was not a good book. I'm not sure if it was the incongruity of using principles from Jane Austen to justify very modern sexual behaviors or if it was the fact that a good amount of information about Austen's books was wrong (the Crawfords came to the neighborhood of Mansfield Park to visit their half-sister NOT their aunt. And Henderson repeatedly accuses Willoughby's wife of being "bitchy" which is unfairly harsh).

I'm also 90% positive that the majority of the "real life" examples were ma
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
I was quite a bit aprehensive when I started reading this book because when I picked it up I didn't realize it was actually a dating guide... I know, I know, the book is named "Jane Austen's Guide to Dating" but I can't resist anything that has "Jane Austen" on it so I pick it up without giving it much thought...

Overall, this book was an ok read and I enjoyed the insight on Austen's characters, and the opportunity to look at them from a different angle. I'd never read a dating guide before and d
May 10, 2009 Jenny rated it liked it
At one point in this book the author tells of her grandmother who said in her day there were skinny girls, bigger girls, and girls in between and a man who preferred a girl that looked like you. So there was no need for dieting. I think this goes not just for physical preference but characteristic preference too. Not to say we shouldn't improve ourselves but what one woman fancies I most certainly don't. While this book had some good points, and it was fun to see what lessons might be learned fr ...more
May 24, 2010 Margie rated it it was ok
Shelves: austen
A fun premise beaten like a dead horse. The chapters quickly become repetitive.

The perspective is disappointing; although much of it is sensible and well grounded, there's also a lot that is contradictory and anti-feminist. Perhaps I simply shouldn't be reading books about dating.
Dec 02, 2008 April rated it it was amazing
This is a funny take on relationships. It makes relationship woes and trivial pursuits look like a game of learning. Enjoy this one... it's for the girls.
Jan 27, 2016 Richelle rated it liked it
This book is an interesting comparison to Austen's literary-style of dating and modern-day relationships. Appealing if you are interested in wholesome relationships.
Oct 17, 2016 Erin rated it it was ok
It has taken several years for me to finish this book because even though it is written in a voice that makes it quick and easy to read, I was rather put-off by the author's modern examples, which talk of morals very different than mine. Ms. Henderson doesn't get horribly explicit, but her cavalier attitude tended to disgust me and make frequent, lengthy breaks necessary for me. Even so, I did find myself continually returning to this book every few months or years until I finally finished it, s ...more
Apr 14, 2011 Gerd rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Why read a dating guide?

Most people, readers and non-readers alike, will agree that there’s few books more unnecessary than a dating guide. No, really, nobody in his right mind needs them (and nobody in his left mind would understand them *giggle*).
But truth is although there’s a plethora of rubbish in that field they can be vastly entertaining. They give us reason to look back at our own dating experiences and the horribly stupid things we did to try and impress our dates, usually making comple
Pheonix Jones
Oct 18, 2016 Pheonix Jones rated it it was amazing
Ever tried too hard while dating? In Jane Austen's guide to dating, dating becomes much more simple and much more understandable than the average "guide to dating" books. Relating values and personality traits of the Jane Austen characters to oneself, and analyzing the values set forth within the various Austen books, the author is very much able to make the complications of dating go away. My favorite part was where the author would relate the values to herself and her experiences, giving the b ...more
Siobhan B.
Oct 13, 2016 Siobhan B. rated it liked it
DNF. Enjoyable but it didn't capture my interest as hoped.
Aug 26, 2012 Lucinda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jane Austen has to be one of the most recognizable and distinctive authors of all-time, whose outlook on romance has captivated and enlightened us for centuries portrayed through her memorable characters. Pride and Prejudice, Northanger Abbey, Sense and Sensibility, Persuasion etcetera have delighted us for years with such distinctive characters, that we have come to associate with those in the modern day world who surround us. For an example of this we take a specific gentleman and see manneri ...more
Jun 04, 2012 Martine rated it liked it
Usually, this kind of book isn't my cup of tea. Dating advice and all that stuff. So it's not that much of a surprise that there were a few things that I disliked.
First of all, this book was described as "charming and humorous". Well, I'm capable of understanding various types of humor and humorous this was not. It wasn't even unintentionally funny though I said "Are you kidding me?" a lot while reading.

So, to sum it up, I had no idea what to make of it but it was slightly more entertaining than
Aug 07, 2013 Elizabeth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Jane Austen fans
Recommended to Elizabeth by: A friend
A delightful little dating guide for casual readers, and an interesting read for Jane Austen fans, Lauren Henderson presents to us a quirky and rather humorous guide of some of literature’s most famous romantic archetypes (from the likes of the Mr. Darcys of this world, to the Emma Woodhouses). She cleverly reinterprets some of the basic rules of courtship from Regency times to fit the 21st century dating scene with some instructions and sensible advice which remain as pertinent now as they were ...more
Jan 24, 2012 Alison rated it liked it
The author did her dissertation on social mores in Jane Austen's novels, but her analysis of what's true about relationships far transcends any mere intellectual critical analysis of Austen's writing style. Instead, this is one of the most clever understanding of relationships I've read anywhere, and I've read a lot of relationship books.

Using the characters in each of Austen's six major works as examples, the author then goes on to apply those lessons learned from the way each character behave
Jun 11, 2010 Darlyn rated it really liked it
I enjoyed reading it tremendously and never thought that it is actually a self help book and dating guides! The book has ten chapters. Each chapter is likely a rule. In one chapter it highlighted the point that you should not play hard to get and try to appear hard to resist.

Here are the 10 interesting chapters;

1. If you like someone, make it clear that you do.
2. Don't put your feelings on public display, unless they're fully reciprocated.
3. Don't play games or leads people on.
4. Have faith
Jul 22, 2016 Mell rated it did not like it
The cover looks fluffy and charming, but this book reinforces sexist stereotypes and poses several problems.

I doubt most Janeites ever thought they would see JA's works and characters quoted alongside words like "Booty Call." The author intends to give light-hearted advice, but my feminism is too deeply entrenched to laugh off comments like "a woman's making the first move with a man" rarely works. Yuck! Apparently we're still living in the 19th century. Maybe Henderson should have updated her a
Black Elephants
Sep 10, 2010 Black Elephants rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
The shininess of a product that clings to Jane Austen's comet just is too much to resist sometimes. It's how I find myself reading such regretful things as Mr. Darcy's Daughters or a book with the lost love scenes of Jane Austen. Generally, such titles are what they are: the unimportant and better forgotten piece of a glorious entity. However, Jane Austen's Guide to Dating was lighthearted, fun, forgettable and a simple way to pass a few hours. The best part of the guide is when the author analy ...more
Aug 29, 2013 Queirosiana rated it it was ok
Este é um daqueles livros do género auto-ajuda. Confesso que estava à espera de algo diferente quando o trouxe da bibliioteca, porque julguei que se tratava de um romance inspirado na autora.

Em Amor e Sedução segundo Jane Austen, Lauren Henderson, a escritora, enumera uma série de dicas, lições e exemplos a seguir para arranjar o homem indicado da forma indicada, tomando como modelo (ainda que adaptando aos dias de hoje) as regras que Jane Austen descreve nas suas obras.

É um exercício interessan
Carol Vorvain
May 07, 2014 Carol Vorvain rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First of all, the book has a test, quite at the end that will tell you which Jane Austen character are you. Apparently I am Jane- sweet and straightforward. Not too far fetched...
Now, about the book.
I loved all Jane Austen's books, but I have to say I was a bit reluctant to buy this book. However, I did enjoy it and I was not disappointed.
The book is not as the title might suggest only a guide to romance. It makes you question the "American way of over thinking things", suggesting there are be
Here as a ring.
On the whole I enjoyed this very much, although I wonder if I'm a wee bit too old for this sort of thing -especially trying to do the quizzes at the back required a bit of excavation into my past - between what I think I was like when I was still dating and what the beginnings of my relationship with my partner of over twenty years were like... I'm sorry I didn't see the synopsises of the books until the end, as I read many of the Austens a long time ago. Not sure I ever did read
Nov 24, 2009 Laura rated it did not like it
I thought it was in a rather impressive show of distaste that this author tried to mix Jane Austen's novels with her own immoral ethics and worldly knowledge. This book fell short on so many levels I can't even count them all. While the author did manage to put in snippets and examples from most, if not all of Jane Austen's most popular works, I was not impressed with her dating advice. I thought she had a completely different stance on dating than Jane Austen would have approved and I didn't li ...more
Margherita Dolcevita
Ogni qualvolta leggo un titolo in cui sono presenti le due paroline magiche, Jane Austen, mi precipito a comprare il libro in questione, anche se, come in questo caso, si tratta di una guida tutto sommato inutile (per me). E infatti le parti più interessanti sono quelle in cui l'autrice parla dei romanzi della Austen, ma anche quelle in cui fa esempi pratici chiamando in causa amici e conoscenti. Il resto è di scarso interesse e ammetto di averne saltate varie parti. Tanto l'uomo perfetto è Darc ...more
Mar 26, 2015 Adele rated it liked it
I found this book at a used bookstore in Snow Hill, Maryland. Needless to say I did not look at this book more closely. I thought this was going to be a romantic comedy. I didn't realize it was really a dating guide book. Honestly I love Austen but I am more of a Bronte/ Gaskell fan. Their men are so mysterious ;) also I don't need a guide on dating because I already found my Captain Wentworth. But If anyone is looking for a dating guide book through Jane Austen or just looking for a mindless bo ...more
Apr 15, 2009 Kathryne rated it it was ok
Sometimes hilarious, sometimes insightful - a fun read for any Jane Austen fan who is currently or ever has played the dating game. While it was a mostly enjoyable read I did have two big objections. One is that the author views sexual intimacy as a normal part of the dating experience, which unfortunately is a common view in today's world. The second, which is really more of an amusing difference of opinion rather than an objection, is that the author’s favorite Austen heroine is Emma and her l ...more
Jun 02, 2009 Carrie rated it did not like it
Since there's only one copy, housed at a remote branch of the library, I didn't have a chance to read the book jacked to realize that this actually in intended to be a dating self-help book. I figured it'd be a humorous take on Jane's dating advice, but I found myself put off by the authoritative stance the author took--"do this, don't do this"--with no counseling/psychology credential to back her up. If it's supposed to be tongue-in-cheek, that didn't come across well to me. That said, I did en ...more
Jan 19, 2011 Christine rated it did not like it
There's something jarring with the choice of words the author chooses to use in some passages. I noticed sentences that end with prepositions which sounded odd. I cannot imagine the big Austen would use the "b*****" word in talking about another woman's behaviour (Miss Bingley).

Also annoying was the tone the author takes that reminds me of 20-20 in hindsight of people's relationships working or not. (Are these people's stories for real? They read like vapid romance novel plots in some cases.)

Yes, I know. It's not my sort of book at all, but a friend of mine got it for me as a present. She's getting married in a couple of months and is loved up and happy and wants me to settle down and get myself some loving too. I'm not offended, it was a sweet thought (which was tongue in cheek) and she knows I'm a Austen fan, and it was quite good fun. A lot of the examples were wide sweeping and a little too neat, and occassionally Henderson seems to be grasping at straws when it comes to the cha ...more
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Born in London in 1966, Lauren Henderson read English at university and then worked as a journalist for - among other publications - the New Statesman, Marxism Today, the Observer and Lime Lizard, a much-mourned indie music magazine. Lauren now divides her time between Italy and London and, when not wine-tasting, writes full-time.
More about Lauren Henderson...

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