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Available: A Memoir of Heartbreak, Hookups, Love and Brunch

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From a breakout storytelling star at The Moth, a real-life romantic comedy about a guy and a girl—and twenty-nine other a memoir about an unexpected break-up, one self-imposed year of being single, and how a “nice guy” survived dating in the twenty-first century.

Matteson Perry is a Nice Guy. He remembers birthdays, politely averts his eyes on the subway, and enjoys backgammon. A serial monogamist, he’s never asked a stranger out. But when the girl he thought might be The One dumps him, he decides to turn his life around. He comes up with The 1. Be single for a year. 2. Date a lot of women. 3. Hurt no one’s feelings. He’s not out to get revenge, or to become a pickup artist; he just wants to disrupt his pattern, have some fun, and discover who he is. A quick-witted Everyman, Perry throws himself into the modern world of courtship and digital dating, only to discover that even the best-laid plans won’t necessarily get you laid. Over the course of a year he dated almost thirty different women, including a Swedish tourist, a former high school crush, a born-again virgin, a groupie, an actress, a lesbian, and a biter.

In Available , award-winning storyteller Matteson Perry brings us into the inner sanctum of failed pick-up lines, uncomfortable courtships, awkward texts, and self-discovery, charting the highs and lows of single life and the lessons he learned along the way. Candid, empathetic, and devastatingly funny, Available is the ultimate real-life rom-com about learning to date, finding love, and becoming better at life.

256 pages, Hardcover

First published May 24, 2016

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About the author

Matteson Perry

4 books13 followers
Matteson Perry is a Colorado native now living in Los Angeles where he works as a writer and performer. His work can been seen in The New York Times, McSweeney's, and on The Moth Radio Hour on NPR. He's a two time Moth Grandslam winner and hosts the MothSlam in Los Angeles. His first book, "Available: A Memoir of Heartbreak, Hookups, Love, and Brunch" will be published by Scribner in May 2016.

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5 stars
140 (21%)
4 stars
279 (41%)
3 stars
173 (26%)
2 stars
55 (8%)
1 star
18 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 103 reviews
Profile Image for Esil.
1,118 reviews1,363 followers
May 19, 2016
3 1/2 stars. Woah! Well past my 30s and married for close to 30 years, I am so much not the target audience for Available. I'm not sure who is. But it was an interesting peek into the dating world of 30somethings. Matteson Perry recounts a year of his life following a bad break up in which he set out to date without commitment, all while determined to be a "nice guy" and honest about his intentions. In the end, he finds "the one" (this is not a spoiler because he starts the book by thanking his wife for being supportive -- "saintly" is the word I might use -- of this book in which he recounts his numerous dating and sexual adventures before meeting her). At times, it was laugh out loud funny. More than once, Perry's nice guy shtick stretched credibility. Occasionally, it felt like a bit too much information. But, overall, it was a light fun read. Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for an opportunity to read an advance copy.
Profile Image for Carrie.
3,221 reviews1,561 followers
May 11, 2016
Matteson Perry is what you'd refer to as a nice guy. Always trying to treat a lady right and had always been in committed relationships being a serial monogamist. But when the girl he thought would be his one and only dumps him he decides it's time to change things up and try casual dating. His Plan: 1. Be single for a year. 2. Date a lot of women. 3. Hurt no one’s feelings.

Available is a memoir written of Matteson Perry's experience with dating and relationships. It's often incredibly funny which I enjoyed. A look into a male's experience with the single life when he's not a player or very good at the whole dating thing it was somewhat of an interesting read.

I do think the one thing that brought my rating down a bit was it seemed to get a bit repetitive after a while reading about this date or that experience. And I also would have probably been better off skipping the whole chapter with the drug experimenting.

Overall though this was a fun read, Matteson can be a funny guy just from the first page where it mentions he's changed the names, not to protect those in the book but because he came up with better names. I didn't necessarily agree with everything and find it hard to rate a memoir feeling I'm judging someone's life but decided on three stars in the end for overall enjoyment of the read.

I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

For more reviews please visit https://carriesbookreviews.wordpress....

Profile Image for Theresa Alan.
Author 10 books1,042 followers
May 13, 2016
Everyone who has ever done the online dating thing has stories to tell. The ones that are worth recounting are inevitably horrible dates with crazy people, although the truth is that most online dates are just like job interviews except you focus on personal stuff and you might occasionally be asked about favorite sex positions, which is atypical of the job interviews I’ve been on.

In Available, Matteson Perry takes a year off from serial monogamy, hoping to date and have sex with as many women as is feasible without hurting anyone’s feelings. At the start of the book, he’s not sure about what he thinks about marriage since his parents’ divorce, but the way he’s approached relationships so far has just not been working for him: “What makes movies magical is not that incredible things happen in them; incredible things happen in real life, too. No, what makes them magical is they end after the incredible thing happens.”

What made Matteson Perry’s book different from other books about doing tons of dating is 1) It's told from a man’s perspective (I’ve read other books, nonfiction and fiction, from a female perspective), and 2), he is really funny, getting me to chuckle out loud several times. One particularly funny scene is when he ignores several red flags with a woman and takes her home. They have such aggressive sex that she leaves him with hickeys all over his body—the night before he’s meeting his family for a beach vacation. His ensuing attempts at doing online research on rapid hickey removal is hilarious.

This is a light, fun book. I recommend it both to people who are getting back into dating after a long relationship and to people who are in a long-term relationship (so you can remember that dating stinks, and you should try to work things out if possible).
Profile Image for Carolyn.
210 reviews11 followers
April 23, 2019
The writing is competent and easy to read, but the narrative is cringe-worthy. A self-professed 'nice guy' tries to hook up with as many women as possible, while making apologies for it and examining his behaviour and motives under the current liberal ideology. No thanks.
Profile Image for Artemiz.
882 reviews30 followers
March 16, 2016
Matteson Perry's book Available is an wonderful book!
Why did I like the book? Be course it was entertaining and same time helping. It's not easy to be single and it's interesting to read about other people experience.

Matteson has always been a bits shy when it comes to woman. He didn't have girlfriend in high school, his first girlfriend he met in college orientation week and they stayed together through college. After school they went their different ways and shortly Matteson found a new girl. He had seven girlfriends before the last one (with whom he had been together for years, moved to LA together, got a dog together) left him. He was always a nice guy, had always hard time to end relationships that didn't really work, but he was to afraid to be alone, so he did his best to fix unfixable relationships and suffered. After his last girlfriend left he was a mess. But one of his friends had just been in Burning Man and he told to Matteson about his unbelievable sexcapades in Burning Man and Matteson decides he will go there next year, but that meant, he had to be single to have his own sexcapades in Burning Man. So the Plan was born - Stay single for a year, but date a lot, get to know himself and what he wants and after Burning Man, find the one girl to settle down with.

For someone who had not really dated, it was difficult to start to figure out from where and how to get a date, should he let his friends to set him up, should he go online? Well turning this year he tried all - friend's friends, online, fans from club, girls from night club, some where quick, others took time, some understood his need to stay single, others heard wedding bells after first kiss, some where fun, others where scary.

After Burning man, where he had awesome experience but no sexcapades, he decides to settle down, and he even finds a girl who was almost what he wanted, but in the end the girl still left him after some months. At the time the girl he actually wanted was off limits, since she was his friends ex-girlfriend and his friend as well. But at the end they still got together and got married some months later and now they have been married for two years. It's a real life rom/com.

It was really good read, compelling read and entertaining read and I think it's a good book to give to my young nephew to read and to learn from.
Profile Image for Petra.
814 reviews78 followers
May 19, 2016
After having been dumped by his long-term girlfriend, Matteson Perry decides to take a year off from being in a serious relationship. Instead, he wants to enjoy casual dating, have fun and have sex without hurting anybody's feelings. Matteson has been a really nice guy all his life, always a bit shy with females but also very inexperienced at not being in a serious relationship. Over the course of the year, he learns a lot about himself, about dating, about friendships and relationships and about communication.
Available is a funny and lighthearted memoir written from a male perspective, which was pretty interesting. The author lost me a little when he recounted his drug-fuelled weeklong experience at Burning Man (the whole idea sounded like a total nightmare to me), but he really won me over with the last few chapters.
A refreshing writing style and amusing anecdotes made this into an enjoyable, quick read.
I received an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
180 reviews1 follower
June 10, 2016
A real love story that includes all the heartbreaks and experiences leading up to it in a guy's point-of-view. Humorous and fun!
Profile Image for Julie Cameron.
Author 2 books20 followers
June 12, 2016
I listened to this book, narrated by the author, and I loved it. I'll be honest, there were moments when I wanted to reach through the pages and slap him senseless for being a jerk, but then he would come to this same realization on his own, and I'd think, "Okay, he truly is a nice guy." As a not-so-thirty-something reader, I found his thirty-something experiences laugh-out-loud hilarious -- yes, people looked at me suspiciously during those outbursts, but I'd just point to the noise-cancelling headphones over my ears, and shrug my shoulders -- and I enjoyed his openness and honesty. The Burning Man section alone, makes Matteson Perry a very brave man! A word of caution: Please remember that this is a memoir, and not a how-to book. :)
Profile Image for Caitlin.
923 reviews32 followers
September 29, 2017
What a letdown! I'd loved his Modern Love essay, and resulting installment in the podcast series. How dumb of me to assume his book, touted on said podcast, would maintain the same charm. Spoiler alert - it does not.

His book started with the essay from the podcast that lured me in the first place. So far so good - but then it got realllly bad. Subsequent chapters lose any trace of a narrative arc and our narrator loses any trace of the hapless nice guy he fancies himself to be. Instead we're left with a douche of the Tucker Max degree with MK redeeming qualities. Frankly not even sure why I finished the book except it was slow motion train wreck I was sure would redeem itself. Joke's on me.
Profile Image for Raquel.
5 reviews
June 3, 2016
Totally flew through this book. Has literally nothing to do with my life right now (i'm not a guy in my early 30s dating a series of women) but has such a funny, reflective, self-effacing narrator, it's easy to get drawn in. One of the quotes on the back likens it to a bill Bryson style dating book, which I totally agree with. It ends wonderfully, but at that point you're enjoying the writing so much you want to go, "OK, so the story's over, but just keep talking about something else and I'll read that too."
4 reviews
August 5, 2017
Nope. Author can state he is a "nice guy" until the world ends, but he is not. This book just makes me terrified for my college aged daughter as she has already encountered several of these type of f-boys.
Profile Image for Jenny Jo Weir.
1,549 reviews79 followers
May 21, 2018
Loved it! Funny, cute, sweet, endearing, honest, brutal, blunt, you name it. I could say a plethora of awesome things about this book but instead I’ll simply say this: It’s all about the delivery and this man delivers!!! Highly recommend, check it out.
Profile Image for Victor.
108 reviews19 followers
September 7, 2016
He dates and has sex with a bunch of girls, and then he settles down and has sex with just one girl.
Profile Image for Michelle Shahrizai.
5 reviews27 followers
October 29, 2020
Typical “I’m a nice guy” mentality. I would write more but I think some other reviewers summed it up nicely.
Profile Image for Jennifer Lee.
69 reviews5 followers
March 5, 2019
This book was amazing, i was laughing from the dedication to the last line. I loved the sarcasm and sense of humor throughout the book. Laura is an amazing woman for being supportive of this book. I’m so happy he found his happily ever after. Even as a woman there are SO many things that i can relate to and I’ve realized that i need to make brunch dates a thing lol
Profile Image for Kim.
510 reviews37 followers
May 30, 2016
Matteson Perry describes his book, Available: A Memoir of Heartbreaks, Hookups, Love, and Brunch, as what Eat Pray Love would be if it had been written by a man. A serial monogamist through his twenties, Perry vows to take a year off from relationships to date casually after having his heart broken by a woman he calls his manic pixie dream girl.

He goes on a bunch of dates and has a fair bit of sex, learning about himself and developing insights on love and relationships along the way. Each woman is described well enough to seem different than the rest, and these experiences culminate in Perry devoting several chapters to his time at Burning Man, which had been a primary motivator for him to remain single.

Humorous and self-deprecating, his quest to get to know women on a purely casual and physical level never comes across as misogynistic. And yes, he does find love in the end, as anyone who reads the dedication page to his wife at the beginning of this book is already aware. I highly recommend this one to anyone who’s endured breakups, online dating, or the search for love.

I was able to read this title courtesy of Netgalley and the publisher, and really enjoyed it!
1,787 reviews16 followers
February 23, 2016
ARC from net galley.

After the break up of a long term relationship, Matteson Perry decides to take a year off from serious dating and try to only date and have sex in a non-serious way. This involves one night stands, casual sex, friends-with-benefits arrangements and a week at Burning Man (which, much to no one's surprise, seems like my thing at all--sleeping outside for a week, tons of drugs and random people--ugh).

One thing I gathered from this book is that confidence is almost everything when meeting people and you really can get good at dating. After a year, he seems kind of interested in a girl, but realizes he really likes his life the way it is. And then, he meets someone who, as in all good love stories, makes me realize he wants to change his life.

Throughout the memoir, he also meets up with his buddies for brunch, which is funny b/c he always makes fun of brunch foods and recites the order he clearly invented for the book.
Profile Image for Andrea.
153 reviews12 followers
April 1, 2016
"A copy of this book has been provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review"

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Matteson Perry's memoir of his dating/love experiences. It felt very fresh to hear this from a young man's perspective as I have read similar things in both fiction and non-fiction by female authors. I am thankful that he decided to share this personal journey with us, and I wonder if while he was on it did he know that he was going to write a book about it later? Was he taking detailed notes or did the idea come to him after?
Anyway, if you would like to be amused, laugh, feel all sorts of emotions, admire the author and also sometimes go "YOU DID WHAT?!" then this is a good book for you.
Profile Image for Alan Peralta.
36 reviews6 followers
April 23, 2016
A modern male perspective on dating not written by a PUA douchebag!

One of the funniest books I have read recently. Light, witty, genuine and utterly amusing, Perry's journey from a nice guy to a man-slut, and back again to a nice guy with a new perspective on dating and relationships, it's fantastically entertaining. Perry's writing style is refreshing; it reads like something a friend will blog about, interjected with a lot of comically written annotations and detours. How this book talks about the use of dating apps, email and messages as a modern form of courtship (and, of course, getting laid!) makes it authentic, current and, frankly, hitting very close to home.

It feel a lot like the literary version of Master of None, even more than Modern Romance.
Profile Image for Marshall Seligmann.
1 review1 follower
April 26, 2016
"A promotional copy of this book was provided to me in a GoodReads giveaway."

This was a great book about the ins-and-outs of modern dating life in Los Angeles. The author takes us through his hilarious transition from too-nice-guy who gets his heart broken into an experienced and mature adult capable of seeking out and sustaining a meaningful and lasting relationship, with plenty of brunch along the way. It's humorous, light-hearted, and by reading through the author's own ups-and-downs one can learn a lot about themselves and the way they've been approaching dating in their own life. I highly recommend it!
Profile Image for Geoff Young.
183 reviews9 followers
May 19, 2016
This is a super fast read. The stories are entertaining and work on multiple levels. On the surface there's a guy who just wants to get laid. A little deeper there's that same guy trying to get his act together and find a meaningful relationship.

The character arc feels real. The author's self-awareness and honesty in telling tales that don't paint him in the most flattering light endear him in a way that wouldn't work if he were less flawed. Despite his tortuous (and often torturous) path and the sometimes glib prose he uses to describe it, the overall message here is surprisingly touching.
Profile Image for Ken.
23 reviews1 follower
March 27, 2016
A great memoir of a tough subject. Any time someone writes a memoir about their dating/hook up experiences, it runs the risk of coming across as douchey. Luckily, right when it comes up to that line, it shifts off to self deprecating and sensitive. The author is a storyteller for The Moth, so that's the kind of storyteller pedigree that you'll get.

I received this book for free through Goodreads Giveaways.
Profile Image for Val.
118 reviews8 followers
April 23, 2016
*I won this in a Goodreads giveaway* Brilliantly funny! Matteson Perry is a nice guy, in a slutty sort of way. Rude, raunchy, riotous honesty about becoming Sleazy Guy, and then trying to reset the sleaze meter back to Nice Guy, after he finally really and truly meets "The One". The only thing I didn't like about this book is that it finally had to end. I hope Mr. Perry sees fit to continue putting his storytelling talents between the covers of books!
Profile Image for Mary.
1,566 reviews507 followers
September 8, 2016
Really liked this book. I had actually never heard of Matteson Perry before so I had to Google him... I'm always a fan of books by people in comedy and this book was no exception. The book made me laugh, and he really is a great writer. It also doesn't hurt that he's from Denver where I'm currently living! I also ended up looking up his wife during the reading of this book. She works at Apple and I'm jealous.
Profile Image for Bonnie.
370 reviews
September 11, 2016
Often amusing look into the psyche of a single man in the modern dating world. Although Perry veers dangerously close to the 'douchebag' territory, his self-deprecating wit juuuust manages to save him from being insufferable. I do feel badly for some of the women he dated though, especially the few who were looking for something more from him.

Still, Perry is a good storyteller, and this is an easy read, as long as you try to not be too judgmental.
Profile Image for Laurie.
116 reviews23 followers
September 4, 2016
What can I say about this book? It was great! I laughed so much sometimes that it hurt! The author and his friends seem to have had quite the adventures during the authors Dating Saga..lol I really enjoyed this book and as long as a little consensual sex between adults isn't going to upset your apple cart I highly recommend reading it!
Profile Image for Allison.
224 reviews1 follower
July 4, 2016
A fast and easy read! The premise intrigued me: I wanted a peek into the male mind on dating (and brunch)! Sometimes I was cheering for him, and sometimes I was thinking ugh to be honest. He definitely is witty and made me laugh - and most importantly think! I was hoping for a picture of the happy couple at the end!
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Rebekah.
190 reviews
August 1, 2017
I picked this up because it was on a shelf by the checkout at the library and I liked the eggplant on the cover. After reading it, I have no explanation for the eggplant, and the book was just not my style. I read it quickly because I was curious how the "nice guy" finally meets the right girl, but I guess it's just a lifestyle with which I can't identify.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 103 reviews

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