How to Fall in Love with Anyone
An insightful, charming, and absolutely fascinating memoir from the author of the popular New York Times essay, “To Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This,” (one of the top five most popular New York Times pieces of 2015) explores the romantic myths we create and explains how they limit our ability to achieve and sustain intimacy.What really makes love last? Does love ever work the way we say it does in movies and books and Facebook posts? Or does obsessing over those love stories hurt our real-life relationships? When her parents divorced after a twenty-eight year marriage and her own ten-year relationship ended, those were the questions that Mandy Len Catron wanted to answer.In a series of candid, vulnerable, and wise essays that takes a closer look at what it means to love someone, be loved, and how we present our love to the world, Catron deconstructs her own personal canon of love stories. She delves all the way back to 1944, when her grandparents first met in a coal mining town in Appalachia, to her own dating life as a professor in Vancouver, drawing insights from her fascinating research into the universal psychology, biology, history, and literature of love. She uses biologists’ research into dopamine triggers to ask whether the need to love is an innate human drive. She uses literary theory to show why we prefer certain kinds of love stories. She urges us to question the unwritten scripts we follow in relationships and looks into where those scripts come from in the first place. And she tells the story of how she decided to test a psychology experiment that she’d read about—where the goal was to create intimacy between strangers using a list of thirty-six questions—and ended up in the surreal situation of having millions of people following her brand-new relationship.In How to Fall in Love with Anyone Catron flips the script on love and offers a deeply personal, and universal, investigation.

How to Fall in Love with Anyone Details

TitleHow to Fall in Love with Anyone
Author
FormatHardcover
ReleaseJun 27th, 2017
PublisherSimon Schuster
ISBN1501137441
ISBN-139781501137440
Number of pages256 pages
Rating
GenreAutobiography, Memoir, Writing, Essays, Nonfiction, Romance, Relationships

How to Fall in Love with Anyone Review

  • Natalie
    July 3, 2017
    I let the title for this collection of essays fool me for a second there, thinking it would be some self-help junk about the magic of love and all its promises. It's far from it, actually.“I hated this way of talking about love, but I caught myself doing it, too. The right choice, the right person, the right kind of love, the one. Was it moral rightness or narrative rightness—a good person or a good story?”In a series of candid, vulnerable, and wise essays that takes a closer look at what it mea I let the title for this collection of essays fool me for a second there, thinking it would be some self-help junk about the magic of love and all its promises. It's far from it, actually.“I hated this way of talking about love, but I caught myself doing it, too. The right choice, the right person, the right kind of love, the one. Was it moral rightness or narrative rightness—a good person or a good story?”In a series of candid, vulnerable, and wise essays that takes a closer look at what it means to love someone, be loved, and how we present our love to the world, Catron deconstructs her own personal canon of love stories. She delves all the way back to 1944, when her grandparents first met in a coal mining town in Appalachia, to her own dating life as a professor in Vancouver, drawing insights from her fascinating research into the universal psychology, biology, history, and literature of love.Contrary to my first impression, Catron delves into the realities (not fantasies) of loving and being loved. The harms of romantic comedies in painting an unrealistic view of healthy relationships. (“When I tell people I think love stories make us worse at being in love, they are quick to agree.”) The author's family history on love, compatibility, and divorce. Plus, there's an emphasise on making the research inclusive with including LGBTQIA+ relationships.However, I do have to note that How to Fall in Love with Anyone wasn’t a particularly life-changing read for me, since I was already familiar with the subject of having the media glorifying the concept of love. But it was still fascinating to get to see this blend of memoir and reportage work so well in my favor. My favorite parts by far were when the grandmother and mother were in the mix, talking about their lives and loves. I do still wish that we would've gotten to spend more time with those two in the second half.“As she talked, her life veered from tragic to comic, sounding more like the plot of a good book than a real person’s experience. ”And a list of other things I appreciated were:• The many mentions and recommendations of great books the author read on the topic of love. (I've so far added Alain de Botton’s Essays in Love, which I'm eager to get into next.)• Another thing I cherished was the many feminist undertones, especially when talking about rom-coms:“Most of these stories rely on an inherent paradox: True love is the ultimate means of validation and personal transformation, and yet a virtuous woman should never pursue love directly. (Men in persecuted hero roles, on the other hand, are allowed—even expected—to woo their love interests.) Love is the means by which Cinderella and Vivian and Sixteen Candles’s Samantha get what they want: status, wealth, recognition. But these characters are rewarded for not seeking love, for cultivating silent crushes and earnest longing.”• Feelings of loneliness and uncertainness.“I understood how you could leave someone and feel lost without him, and still choose that loneliness over being with him.”• The media's infatuation with kismet aka meet-cutes.“Maybe instead of telling stories about how we met our partners, we should all share our stories about the limits of love—the times it disappointed us, the apprehensions it couldn’t soothe—and why we chose it anyway, or why we let it go. We don’t need stories to show us how to meet someone—we’ve got apps for that.”• And finally the notion of “if you can fall in love with anyone, how do you choose?” and so much more is explored in this book.All in all: I'm glad I decided to give a chance to How to Fall in Love with Anyone because the combination of learning about love from a scientific perspective with the author's self-deprecating humor was a win for me. Though, I would like to mention that the notion of experiencing so many breakups over the course of this book was a bit mentally and physically exhausting for me by the end.3.5/5 stars Note: I'm an Amazon Affiliate. If you're interested in buying How to Fall in Love with Anyone, just click on the image below to go through my link. I'll make a small commission! This review and more can be found on my blog.
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  • Laura
    May 18, 2017
    This review is also published here: http://theslattern.com/2017/05/23/hea...Let’s just make this clear up-front – this is NOT a self-help or non-fiction book, it is a memoir. I’ve seen a couple of reviews that express disappointment that this wasn’t a list of helpful tips to find love. Those books are out there; this just isn’t one of them.Having said that, as someone who recently went through some epic heartbreak, I did find this book really useful in offering a bit of perspective and oodles a This review is also published here: http://theslattern.com/2017/05/23/hea...Let’s just make this clear up-front – this is NOT a self-help or non-fiction book, it is a memoir. I’ve seen a couple of reviews that express disappointment that this wasn’t a list of helpful tips to find love. Those books are out there; this just isn’t one of them.Having said that, as someone who recently went through some epic heartbreak, I did find this book really useful in offering a bit of perspective and oodles and oodles of HOPE.Mandy Len Catron shot to fame in 2015 when her essay ‘To Fall in Love With Anyone, Do This’ was published in the New York Times Modern Love column. In it, she details an experiment she undertook with an acquaintance (full disclosure: an unattached acquaintance who she fancied and who clearly fancied her), where they asked each other a list of questions formulated by psychologist Arthur Aron some 20 years earlier, which were designed to make two people fall in love. As it happens, Mandy and the guy did end up falling in love and are (as far as I know) still together.But this book isn’t simply a repetition of that well known column; it is an in-depth memoir about the events that brought Catron to that point. She carefully unpacks the breakdown of her parents’ relationship while she was in her twenties, the way that her mother and grandmother experienced first love, and the breakdown – after ten years and at the age of thirty – of her own relationship. I found it both extremely readable and comforting. Finding oneself suddenly single at thirty can be shocking and disorientating (just trust me on this, OK?), and it was nice to hear a sane, level-headed voice explaining that a) heartbreak is not uncommon – in fact it’s almost universal nowadays and b) love is complex and nuanced and mediated by all kinds of cultural norms and chemicals – it’s OK to feel baffled by the whole thing!Part personal narrative, part anthropological study, part pop psychology, I found this an engaging and enlightening read. With thanks to the publisher for providing me with an ARC in return for an honest review
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  • Sarah
    May 28, 2017
    A really enjoyable read. I love thinking and reading about love (I've previously enjoyed On Love and The Course of Love, Alain de Botton's offerings on the topic), so this was a really thought provoking one for me. Not too scientific nor light-hearted, and I enjoyed the author's examples and writing. Recommended!
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  • Auderoy Lin
    June 23, 2017
    FAV QUOTES:In love, we fall.That’s how I fell in love with him in college, when we slept belly to back, my nose tucked against his neck, when the daytime was just a placeholder for the night.As far as I could tell, rightness and wrongness were only ever apparent in retrospect.If I believed love was mundane, I thought, maybe I could take away some of its power.Even if we didn’t always like each other that much, even if we forgot our promises to be kind and patient, it felt good to know someone as FAV QUOTES:In love, we fall.That’s how I fell in love with him in college, when we slept belly to back, my nose tucked against his neck, when the daytime was just a placeholder for the night.As far as I could tell, rightness and wrongness were only ever apparent in retrospect.If I believed love was mundane, I thought, maybe I could take away some of its power.Even if we didn’t always like each other that much, even if we forgot our promises to be kind and patient, it felt good to know someone as well as we knew each other. It felt good to be known.Maybe there aren’t many stories about ambivalent breakups because such stories do little to confirm our assumptions about the power of love. Instead, they render love an ordinary experience.I think many of us want to believe that love cannot be known, that the mysteries of the heart have to remain mysterious.A better version of love did exist.My job was not to choose a good person to love, but rather to be good to the person I’d chosen.Deciding to break up, I thought, was like learning a star had burned out in a distant galaxy, even though you can still see it in the sky: You know something has irrevocably changed, but your senses suggest otherwise. Everything looks normal. Better than normal, even, on a summer afternoon in a hammock.I’ve always thought of stories as records, as ways of remembering our lives. And I thought it was our duty to tell them, to keep the past alive in the present—to keep ourselves alive.I was too young to really understand poverty; I still believed that poor people were happier than the rest of us, because a world in which some people were both poor and miserable seemed too cruel to be real.As Alain de Botton says in Essays in Love, “The stories we tell are always too simple.” They fail to make space for the mundane, domestic, trivial, annoying parts of life.If life is hard for everyone, who are you to have everything you need and still say, “This won’t do anymore”?Occasionally a great shaft of sunlight pushed through the clouds and the dense deciduous foliage. There, you are always in the mountains, not on them.Our views of love—what we want from it, what we think it should feel like—are rooted in the context of our lives.This meeting was just one of many situations where I found myself waiting and listening, intent on figuring out who people wanted me to be before showing them anything about who I was.We’d found each other in the most mundane circumstances. But when we were together nothing was mundane: Everything felt meaningful.At twenty, telling someone what I wanted—not what I was supposed to want, but what I really, genuinely wanted—was the most terrifying thing I could imagine.He wanted his experience of the world to be beautiful, and this, above all, made sense to me.He was, from the first day of our acquaintance, one of those mercurial people whose attention feels like sunlight, something you don’t know you’ve been deprived of until it shines on you, something you’d be smart to store up for the months ahead.At twenty, I wanted a love story almost as much as I wanted love itself.And for a few years, having a good love story felt a lot like having good love.The Cinderella narrative is so ubiquitous—and so integrated into how we think about love—that it’s easy to dismiss. I spent years thinking someone would notice me eventually as long as I dedicated myself to being good and sweet and modest and basically unnoticeable. When I started my first serious relationship, I didn’t notice that my boyfriend’s goal was to become an interesting person through having interesting experiences; whereas I hoped to prove my worth by being loved by the most interesting person I knew: him.When I went on dates, I had to coach myself: My goal was not to make this stranger from the internet like me; my goal was to find out if I liked him.You are already interesting. Your life is already good. It’s okay to say exactly what you want, when you want it. And it’s okay to not know.People still used the phrase broken family then, and I just assumed we didn’t have it in us to break.We don’t seem to mind a little mystery in the process of falling in love. In fact, I suspect we prefer it. But endings are different. When love ends, we demand an explanation, a why.I understood why you might put off telling anyone about your separation: not quite because you feel embarrassment or shame (though likely you are experiencing both, deeply) but because you don’t want to be judged for a decision you have already spent months struggling with. You don’t want to be questioned about something you yourself have little confidence in.Maybe all our worry about how to find love and how to make it last is what keeps us from asking how to be good to one another—and how to love each other well.Sometimes, after he left, I would turn on the shower and cry loudly, just to get that impulse out of my lungs. I thought if I could hear how sad I was, maybe I could feel it a little less.I needed to believe love was an ordinary thing.And I have learned that in conversations about love, there’s often a subtext. Usually this involves the thing we want but are afraid to name, or the thing we want to know but are afraid to ask.It’s astounding, really, to hear what someone admires in you. I don’t know why we don’t go around thoughtfully complimenting one another all the time.I know the eyes are supposedly the windows to the soul, but the real crux of this moment, should you ever find yourself trying it, is not simply that you are seeing someone, but that you are seeing someone seeing you.I resolved to be like that, to let love in, even if I wasn’t sure I was ready.We all want to be known. We want to confess our greatest accomplishment and our most terrible memory. We want to be heard.No love story is a short story.And maybe the best thing about encountering more diverse stories is simply this: They broadened my sense of what was possible.As we swayed on the pavement, my head on his shoulder, we were only mimicking romance, trying on conventions to see how they felt.When I am out to brunch with friends and Mark walks by with the dog and waves hello, I blush at the sight of the two of them, worried my friends will see it on my face: such reckless happiness.I have learned a lot about love from a scientific perspective, but I have come to rely on a more fundamental realization: the knowledge that I can have a good, full life without any guarantees from love. There are so many ways to make a life. Instead of trying to make love last, I’ve decided to take ever after off the agenda.Most of us think about love as something that happens to us. We fall. We get crushed.Love didn’t happen to us. We’re in love because we each made the choice to be.
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  • Clara
    March 20, 2017
    Let's be clear. The author doesn't, in fact, tell you how to fall in love with anyone. Remember: it's a memoir. Catron's voice quickly won me over, and I entered into her story much as I would into that of a friend, stopping occasionally as I read to nod my head or question her choices. For me, the meat of the book is in its second half, as Catron unravels the threads of the stories we buy into about what love should look like, and the ways in which we sabotage perfectly good relationships by co Let's be clear. The author doesn't, in fact, tell you how to fall in love with anyone. Remember: it's a memoir. Catron's voice quickly won me over, and I entered into her story much as I would into that of a friend, stopping occasionally as I read to nod my head or question her choices. For me, the meat of the book is in its second half, as Catron unravels the threads of the stories we buy into about what love should look like, and the ways in which we sabotage perfectly good relationships by comparing them to the conventional tropes of happily-ever-after. I especially welcomed Catron's desire to broaden the notion of "family." She suggests using the word to describe our reality, rather than struggling to fit our reality into the standard definition. It's almost impossible to become an adult without dragging along with you a heavy load of assumptions about love. How to Fall in Love with Anyone asks the reader to question the validity of those love stories. It's an insightful book that most people would benefit from reading.
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  • Shannon Wise
    June 22, 2017
    Ugh. I am so on the fence about this book. It falls into the same category for me as "Eat, Pray, Love" and "Wild". While I had my own issues with those two books (really, who can afford to disappear for an extended period of time to get their shit together?), this one was a bit different. Mandy Len Catron writes about love in a series of essays. That is the first difference. This book isn't meant as one continuous discussion of a particular time. She bounces around to different points in her lif Ugh. I am so on the fence about this book. It falls into the same category for me as "Eat, Pray, Love" and "Wild". While I had my own issues with those two books (really, who can afford to disappear for an extended period of time to get their shit together?), this one was a bit different. Mandy Len Catron writes about love in a series of essays. That is the first difference. This book isn't meant as one continuous discussion of a particular time. She bounces around to different points in her life, but the organization is still linear. I suppose I'm on the fence about this book for two reasons. First has everything to do with the author's tone. The second has to do with me. Catron's tone throughout the book strives to be academic, but I couldn't help but feel at times it was a bit whining and needy. I did find interesting her reactions to love and to dating. She, like a lot of modern women, myself included, reacted to love and dating the way she thought everyone expected her to and not in a way that was genuine to who she was. We have spent so much time being told how to act and what to expect that we conform our thoughts to outside forces and don't allow that inside, we might feel differently. Most importantly, even if we do recognize that we feel differently about marriage, love commitment, etc., we do not feel comfortable or that it is ok with society that we show anything different than what is expected. And that is why this book bothered me. It made me think about my own feelings and expectations. The difference is that I am not a thirty-something year old woman. So some of what she says I find useful for women who are younger and in that phase of life. Overall, this book was okay. I would recommend it to people who are trying to figure out their version of love and relationships. I won this book from Goodreads and received no compensation in exchange for my review. The opinions contained herein, confusing as they are, are mine and mine alone.
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  • Kay
    April 24, 2017
    Enjoyed author being so honest about her relationships and her struggle with love. Fun bookThanks to Netgalley and author for letting me read this book. While I received this book for free, it had no bearing on the rating I gave it.
  • Bri
    July 11, 2017
    I had this book for a week and recommended it to more than 10 people before I had even finished it, which I think should be enough to convince you to add it to your To-Read list immediately! I knew about Mandy Len Catron from her 2015 viral piece in the "Modern Love" section of The New York Times. I loved the article -- I forced my friends to do the first chunk of the 36 questions with each other during the first night of a trip when they all met for the first time. While Catron's pieces for the I had this book for a week and recommended it to more than 10 people before I had even finished it, which I think should be enough to convince you to add it to your To-Read list immediately! I knew about Mandy Len Catron from her 2015 viral piece in the "Modern Love" section of The New York Times. I loved the article -- I forced my friends to do the first chunk of the 36 questions with each other during the first night of a trip when they all met for the first time. While Catron's pieces for the Times are fantastic, this book is something else. It's a better version of Aziz Ansari's Modern Romance and a more personal version of Moira Weigel's Labor of Love. How to Fall in Love with Anyone details how the author has mythologized her parents' and grandparents' love stories and the effect that has had upon her own conceptualization and approaches to romantic love. She spends a chapter detailing the cultural scripts that Western culture passes down about love through romantic comedies or through what we're told embodies a "good relationship", who even "deserves" a "good relationship," and discusses that while we're told what the best end product is, we aren't often taught about how to love others well. In fact, I think this book could be more aptly titled How to Love Better, in order to better convey its contents and to be more alluring than the current title. The book made me think a lot about how we could all be better to each other, if we all decided to value loving better more often. The author devotes multiple chapters to the love stories of her family, all situated within Appalachia, and details how the relationships allowed individuals to move beyond the circumstances they inherited. She contrasts these love stories with her own ten year relationship, which made me feel kind of queasy, simply because I identified with spending too much time in a relationship that slowly fizzled, unbeknownst to the couple, until its pulse flatlined.Eventually the book shifts into describing the relationships Catron enters after her first big relationship, including the one detailed in her viral Modern Romance piece. This reminds me of something I made my boyfriend do on one of our first dates, where we played a question asking game that encourage medium-to-deep conversations instead of the polite, small talk that often occurs. I don't remember the questions or the answers now, but I do remember the feeling of sharing a deeper version of myself than is traditionally expected on these early dates when I would try to present the shiniest version of myself. This book magically captures all of those feelings that I've felt and I loved LOVED loved reading while Catron ruminated on love. That was easy to do because Catron spins many pretty phrases, as you'll see in the quotes that I've included at the end of my post. While I'm loaning this book out to a few friends (to underline their own favorite quotes), I've told them all that I want this book to be on my forever bookshelf (aka the highest honor I can bestow upon a book) so it absolutely must be returned to me.Unfortunately, the book doesn't include Catron's latest piece for "Modern Love," though she alludes to some of the content in the book. I've linked to it because I feel like it's worth reading too. Read all of her things -- each of them are special and wonderful and will sift through your mind for days. "I think of the four of us as subject to the same flash flood, all senselessly bailing water into our own boats in hopes the others might end up on dry land." (p. 122)"Our views of love -- what we want from it, what we think it should feel like -- are rooted in the context of our lives." (p. 72)"But now I understand that there are always two breakups: the public one and the private one. Both are real, but one is sensible and the other is ugly. Too ugly to share in cafés. Too ugly, I sometimes think, to even write." (p. 134)"I didn't know what was real and what was scripted." (p. 16)"Nothing was funny, really, but we couldn't stop laughing the manic laughter of people who know it will be a while before they hear themselves laugh again." (p. 40)Disclaimer: I was provided with physical and digital copies of this book for free from Simon & Schuster. All opinions expressed in the review are my own and have not been influenced by Simon & Schuster.For more reviews, check out www.girlwithabookblog.com!
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  • Maureen
    June 29, 2017
    Absolutely a great memoir. Mandy Len Catron exams the way we can be loved, how we love and present it to the world. I loved reading this book. Highly recommended by me.
  • Michele at A Belle's Tales
    July 11, 2017
    *3.5 stars* In 2015, The New York Times published the essay “To Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This” by Mandy Len Catron. It went viral; and its vast popularity led to this lovely memoir, which I must say – even for this reader, who has been married for a thousand years, give or take a few – is an intriguing read. Keep in mind this isn’t a self-help or how-to book; this is a memoir not only about the author’s relationships, both past and current, but also about our fascination as a society with lo *3.5 stars* In 2015, The New York Times published the essay “To Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This” by Mandy Len Catron. It went viral; and its vast popularity led to this lovely memoir, which I must say – even for this reader, who has been married for a thousand years, give or take a few – is an intriguing read. Keep in mind this isn’t a self-help or how-to book; this is a memoir not only about the author’s relationships, both past and current, but also about our fascination as a society with love and all the things that go along with it. I appreciated not only her own personal accounts but also the stories she shared of the relationships of both her parents and her grandparents; and I enjoyed her study of the popular and idealized romances such as those in Cinderella, The Hunger Games, Twilight, etc.When she writes, “Not everyone who eats is a dietician, but nearly everyone who has loved – which is nearly everyone – presumes to know something about how to do it right,” I’m reminded of that saying ‘take what you need and leave the rest,’ which in the corner of the world where I grew up, was applied to everything from buffets to advice. And I think I feel that way about this memoir in some ways because I’m at a place in my life where a lot of what’s discussed doesn’t apply to me; but because I am in a committed relationship and will always be a believer in love, there were still things the author offered that could stop and make me think. All in all, How to Fall in Love with Anyone is a thoughtful and straightforward look at loving and being loved, and it was a very enjoyable read.A huge thank-you to Simon & Schuster for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. Review originally posted at A Belle's Tales.
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  • Sandhya Chandramohan
    July 9, 2017
    I am that person who needs to read a book on love to understand what the fuss is all about. The fact that a person would willingly put so much trust and faith in another person, simply goes right over my head. What is love anyway? This book breaks it down. Love is evolution's way of making sure that human offspring's survive their initial years. Love is an adaptation that helps us focus on one person long enough to conceive and raise a child through toddlerhood. Using studies from evolutionary p I am that person who needs to read a book on love to understand what the fuss is all about. The fact that a person would willingly put so much trust and faith in another person, simply goes right over my head. What is love anyway? This book breaks it down. Love is evolution's way of making sure that human offspring's survive their initial years. Love is an adaptation that helps us focus on one person long enough to conceive and raise a child through toddlerhood. Using studies from evolutionary psychology to metaphor theory and armed with graphs by Kurt Vonnegut, we get to know the mechanics of love. Can we create love? Is it possible to fall in love with anyone if we wanted? You get the answer: You can't choose who loves you. But still, despite all this, love is a more pliable thing than we make it out to be. With the example of a social experiment in creating romantic love in a laboratory by Arthur Aron, in which strangers answered a set of 36 increasingly personal questions about themselves, it proves that it's possible, simple even, to generate trust and intimacy, the feelings love needs to thrive. Do we fall in love? No, love doesn't happen to us. We fall in love because we make a conscious choice to. Love is not the be-all and end-all of life. You can have a good, full life without any guarantees from love. Today you might want to share your life with someone but your life will be good even without him. Love doesn't end with happily-ever-after, it is an ongoing process, continually warped and renewed by the people who do the loving.
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  • Emyrose8
    June 24, 2017
    This book is going to stick with me for a while. I guess when I first started reading I didn't read the subtitle; I thought it would be more of a "how to" or an advice book instead of a collection of stories about the author's life/love journey. Still, something about the writing style and author's voice kept me reading. She has some good questions to ponder about love and how it works and why it lasts or doesn't last. Questions that challenge previous conceptions about the topic. Some things I This book is going to stick with me for a while. I guess when I first started reading I didn't read the subtitle; I thought it would be more of a "how to" or an advice book instead of a collection of stories about the author's life/love journey. Still, something about the writing style and author's voice kept me reading. She has some good questions to ponder about love and how it works and why it lasts or doesn't last. Questions that challenge previous conceptions about the topic. Some things I agree with, others I don't. The big takeaway for me (something I already know, but this was a good reminder) is that love is intentional. You can choose to be with someone or you can choose not to. But part of making a relationship work is being willing/choosing to be in it, regardless of what the other person chooses to do.The part the most interested me was Dr. Arthur Aron's experiment to get people to fall in love. Two people enter room, sit at a table, and alternate asking 36 questions (each answering each question) which increase in intimacy. At the end, they stare into each other's eyes for four minutes without saying anything. The end result for the original people= six months later, they got married.Note: some swearing, talk of sex (not graphic), cohabitation, etc.Thanks Netgalley for the ARC! :)
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  • Raela
    June 8, 2017
    In January of 2015, Mandy Len Catron published an essay entitled "To Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This" in the New York Times Modern Love column, and it went about as viral as you can get. The essay was based on her fascinating experience using 36 increasingly personal questions from a study done by psychologists over 20 years ago to make two strangers fall in love in a lab. The wild success of that essay led to this book, but what gives this book merit apart from her essay is that she'd already In January of 2015, Mandy Len Catron published an essay entitled "To Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This" in the New York Times Modern Love column, and it went about as viral as you can get. The essay was based on her fascinating experience using 36 increasingly personal questions from a study done by psychologists over 20 years ago to make two strangers fall in love in a lab. The wild success of that essay led to this book, but what gives this book merit apart from her essay is that she'd already been researching and writing on the topic for years. In this memoir, she effortlessly balances her own history and questions about love with the research and findings of others as well. As a thirty-something, her essays are thoroughly relevant to the new and unique challenges of falling in love in 2017 while also being respectful of the timelessness of this topic. She covers age-old questions about how to fall in love, how to stay in love, what love really means, and whether there even are any answers at all. With approachable and engaging writing, this is a great read for anyone who's ever had one of those conversations over coffee with a friend or loved one asking all the big questions about love and wondering if they're the only ones.
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  • Allyssa Lewis
    June 30, 2017
    Mandy Lee Catron shows readers a very candid account of her experiences with relationships and love. I haven't read many memoirs over the years but something about this one jumped out at me! (a mix of the catchy title and intriguing cover most likely) Now while I haven't read many memoirs, this has definitely been put to the top of my list.Catrons' writing style makes this book so easy to read, almost as though you are sitting there listening to her tell you this story in person. It felt raw and Mandy Lee Catron shows readers a very candid account of her experiences with relationships and love. I haven't read many memoirs over the years but something about this one jumped out at me! (a mix of the catchy title and intriguing cover most likely) Now while I haven't read many memoirs, this has definitely been put to the top of my list.Catrons' writing style makes this book so easy to read, almost as though you are sitting there listening to her tell you this story in person. It felt raw and honest, and a lot heavier than I had anticipated it would be. This book wasn't a quick read for me, not because it wasn't interesting but because it caused a lot of self reflection along the way. While Catron is sharing her experiences you can't help but to examine you own relationships and your view on what "love" means. Overall, this isn't my typical go too book but it's something that I'm happy to have come across.
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  • Linds
    June 28, 2017
    Maybe I just read this at the right time in my life, but I loved it! This is not a self-help book and I didn't go into it expecting it to be. I expected a memoir detailing the author's experiences with dating and love, and it is that, but it actually turned out to be more complex, with the author's sociological explorations of typical romantic tropes in the stories that we hear in books, movies, etc. I loved her discussion of Cinderella (it brought me back to the amazing Feminist Fairy Tales cla Maybe I just read this at the right time in my life, but I loved it! This is not a self-help book and I didn't go into it expecting it to be. I expected a memoir detailing the author's experiences with dating and love, and it is that, but it actually turned out to be more complex, with the author's sociological explorations of typical romantic tropes in the stories that we hear in books, movies, etc. I loved her discussion of Cinderella (it brought me back to the amazing Feminist Fairy Tales class I took in college). I also appreciated the author's inclusion of "non-traditional" relationships, like same sex relationships and those that are not monogamous. The author's occasional switching between time periods bothered me a bit but I still really enjoyed it.
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  • Shannon
    May 19, 2017
    This collection of essays exploring love and what media, culture, and society tells us love should be or look like was an amazing window into Mandy Len Catron's journey to find answers. I loved this book, the candid stories she shares of herself. I could not put this book down and read it in nearly one sitting. Mandy dives into everything from scientific studies, psychological theories, movies, magazines, the often well intended but ill advice we can receive from friends and family about love. M This collection of essays exploring love and what media, culture, and society tells us love should be or look like was an amazing window into Mandy Len Catron's journey to find answers. I loved this book, the candid stories she shares of herself. I could not put this book down and read it in nearly one sitting. Mandy dives into everything from scientific studies, psychological theories, movies, magazines, the often well intended but ill advice we can receive from friends and family about love. Mandy digs deep to find answers and has created a meaningful piece of work that is thought provoking and very much worth reading!
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  • Jane Eaton Hamilton
    June 15, 2017
    How to Fall in Love with Anyone is a memoir about love. The author is languishing in a comfortable-enough longterm relationship with a guy, but when her parents separate when she is 26, she is shocked and thrown. She is driven to understand what love is, and how it can go wrong after being right for a very long time. How does one even figure out what "right" is? She looks back into the love of prior generations of her family, explores the love between diverse couples in culture and literature, a How to Fall in Love with Anyone is a memoir about love. The author is languishing in a comfortable-enough longterm relationship with a guy, but when her parents separate when she is 26, she is shocked and thrown. She is driven to understand what love is, and how it can go wrong after being right for a very long time. How does one even figure out what "right" is? She looks back into the love of prior generations of her family, explores the love between diverse couples in culture and literature, and delves into the science of love. In the end, Mandy Len Catron leaves her longterm partner, and after dating for a time, meets a guy with whom she answers the 36 questions now famous from her NY Times Modern Love essay, and they fall in love.
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  • Missy
    May 16, 2017
    I didn't rate this book because I didn't finish it. It made me sad because I was expecting it to be a lighter read. I was expecting encouraging tips along the lines of The Happiness Project. I felt the author spent a lot of time discussing the dysfunction of her relationships, instead. The subtitle, A Memoir in Essays, should have prepared me better. What I read wasn't bad, but it wasn't good for me at the time.I was given an ARC through NetGalley
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  • Ann
    June 6, 2017
    I don't read a lot of non-fiction or biographies but this was nice find. Mandy Len Catron gives insight and a different perspective on love. These essays cover many faces of this thing called love from the 1940 as she observes her grandparents love story to her own adventures in love. She shares scientific research, entertainment's look of love and even friends theories on this elusive subject.
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  • Bibi
    May 12, 2017
    I liked reading about the different scientific explanations and theories on falling in love and different types of love. The only thing that turned me off and made me want to stop reading was that a lot bitterness seemed to seep through...due to parents divorce and other relationships. It is a memoir though and I do appreciate the honesty. It was an ok read for me.**I was given an ARC in exchange for an honest review.**
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  • Afoma Eme-Umesi
    May 16, 2017
    I really enjoyed this book. Very intelligently written thoughts on love and relationships. I don't agree with all of the author's opinions but I think it's one of those books that should be read by anyone navigating relationships. Definitely an interesting perspective.ARC provided by publisher via NetGalley.
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  • Luisa
    July 3, 2017
    I won a copy of this book on goodreads in exchange for a honest review. I found this a interesting book to read, it makes some interesting points about love and relationships. Its defiently worth a read a lot more in depth than any relationship advise found in womens magazines.
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  • Cara
    May 23, 2017
    This was a luminous book. Highly recommended.
  • Ron Frampton
    June 29, 2017
    a very good book on the right way to fall in love.
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