Martine's Reviews > Jane Austen's Guide to Dating

Jane Austen's Guide to Dating by Lauren Henderson
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Jun 04, 12

Read from May 14 to June 04, 2012

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 a few novels I had read lately - hence the three stars.
There were two things that really bothered me:
1) Teaching us things that every person with a kind heart would know anyway
2) Restrictions
3) the author seems to have an unrealistic amount of friends

About number 1: We get the advice like 'men are human, too' and 'don't marry a guy just because he's rich'. Which was one of the situations where I thought the author is kidding me. Call me stupid, but I suppose at least 90 % of the readership are women who like Jane Austen's novels or at least the movies. Which means they have a romantic side. You don't need to tell a romantic woman 'don't just look for the cash', because they're looking for love, anyway.
About number 2: I was through one third of the book when I realized that the man I wanted to find was none of the Austen characters. Personally, I prefer Edward Rochester (Jane Eyre), Mark Darcy (Bridget Jones' Diary), Cardinal Chang (The Glass Book of the Dream Eaters) or Kurogane Suwa (Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle). Well, of course the book can't provide these, so I can't mope. What I can do is complain about how straight the book is. And by straight I mean heterosexual.
We're living in the 21st century and the advice we're given is not restricted to gender. Then we're given examples from the Austen books, then we get 'real life examples'. And while Lauren Henderson states that men and women are not that different, how many homosexual couples are listed? ZERO.

What the-
Given the sheer amount of real life examples, Lauren Henderson must have at least hundred friends, yet all of them are straight? I mean, we're living in the 21st century where being attracted to your own sex is far more tolerated than in the 19th century and homosexuality can be considered as something absolutely natural. Unless you're a homophobic idiot, that is. And the possibility of falling in love with someone of your own sex even if you consider yourself 'straight' can not be ruled out.

So, aside from being narrow-minded every now and then, this was quite nice to read.
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Reading Progress

05/25/2012 page 100
33.0% "Honestly, I thought this would be fun. How can one be so dead serious while giving dating advice based on Jane Austen novels? I should've looked for "The Bronte's Guide to Dating". I always wanted to know what dating Heathcliff might be like."

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