Is there a topic as universal and timeless as the relationship between men and women? It seems that dating "rules" are constantly changing—it can be hard to keep up! Luckily, these three guides offer advice (and one a lot of amusement) for today's single folks looking to couple up.
Modern Dating: A Field Guide
By Chiara Atik
From the knowledgeable experts at HowAboutWe.com and Harlequin, this frank, funny, super-comprehensive guide offers advice in small, easily digestible chunks, and is chock-full of informative charts, graphs and illustrations. Topics include how to wing for other women; the art of playing it cool; a dating profile decoder; 75 out-of-the-box date ideas; and a worst-case scenario sex-survival guide. Seriously, this book covers just about everything a modern gal needs to know about navigating today's dating world. Refreshingly, it also encourages women to embrace being single while they're dating and not just lament their solo status.
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Mr. Darcy's Guide to Courtship
By Fitzwilliam Darcy
The actual author of this guide is Emily Brand, but her pitch-perfect ability to capture the stodgy—and, of course, prideful and prejudiced—voice of one Mr. Darcy c. 1812 makes this tongue-in-cheek dating guide so utterly and delightfully amusing. Sections include advice concerning "The Lamentable Preponderance of Plain Women"; "The Language of Hair"; "If Your Charms Are Limited"; "Hints Towards Recognizing a Harlot"; and "On Roguish Behavior." Other 18th-century notables—including Caroline Bingley, Emma Woodhouse, Mr. Collins and Miss Maria Bertram—contribute brief essays relaying wisdom gained from their own courtship foibles. This book is sure to have Austen/P&P/Darcy fans swooning—though they should take note that "immoderate laughter . . . may be taken as a token of a disturbed mind."
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Smitten: The Way of the Brilliant Flirt
By Ariel Kiley and Simone Kornfeld
Smitten asks that you toss aside your preconceived notions of flirting as merely tawdry trickery. Acknowledging that dating can be so fraught with anxiety and uncertainty that it can reduce many women (and men!) to nervous ninnies, this revelatory guide is divided into two sections. The first (and longer) section is all about "unveiling your luminescence," which is fancy talk for believing that you're a pretty cool chick—curious, open-minded and authentic. Self-confidence is the foundation of becoming a brilliant flirt. The second part of the book lays out eight flirtation techniques—including "the quirky question," revealing intelligence" and "decisive decisions"—that will "tap into your authenticity" and turn you into a veritable man-magnet. The book's focus on authenticity brings a refreshing dynamic to the genre.
From Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus to The Rules to He's Just Not That Into You—do you have a favorite dating/relationship guide?