Thursday, December 14, 2006

Unsolicited books

As my fellow dating bloggers know, we sometimes get asked to review books. I've turned down a few offers and accepted a few, though I've only written (poorly) one review (it was for Unhooked Generation). (I also reviewed Breakup Babe, but I asked to do that.)

When I got home the other day, there was a package at my door addressed to my blog name and including the url of the blog. Yikes! I hope the neighbors didn't notice. The package contained two relationship-type books. I couldn't figure out where they came from or how the sender got my address. The next morning, my brain started working again, and I thought, "I wonder if they came from the same person who sent me the last book." Indeed, it was her, a woman working in the "online marketing" division of a publisher.

Is it wrong to be annoyed that she sent these books without asking first? Probably. Hell, if I'm The Post, or The Times or the P-I, I'm sure the books just show up unsolicited and I, the editor (!), decide which ones to review. Wow, who knew I was so powerful?

The problem is, I'm unlikely to read any of these books cover-to-cover. I did glance at them, though, and I may change my mind about one of them.

The first is "How to Set His Thighs on Fire" by Kate White. It sounds like a sexy book and there are a number of sex tips, not surprisingly since it is written by the editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan. However, rather more of the book than I expected was devoted to the story of Kate White's career. There is no narrative line in the book; it is a series of tips on career, how to please your man, how to get him to please you, etc. I'm not saying there's nothing to be learned from this book. I especially liked Chapter 8, "Toss Out Your Five-Year Plan," which emphasizes being open to good things as they come along instead of being locking into a rigid plan--but I find it slightly disconcerting that it is followed by "Guys Will Do Whatever It Takes to Get You into Bed." Most of this stuff is common sense, which doesn't mean it's not worthwhile, it's just not that interesting. Also, it's not a book you can read straight through. I've dipped into it here and there, but I may never read the whole thing.

The other book I won't read, and which I won't even skim, is "Dating Up: Dump the Schlump and Find a Quality Man." Need I say more? I'm sorry, J. Courtney Sullivan, you'll have to find someone else to review your noble effort.

(I was home sick today--yes, again--and talked to Spesh for a while. He says I shouldn't apologize for trashing this book without reading it. In fact, this is an indirect apology! So...too late.)

Last, I might read, "I Love You, Let's Meet" by Virginia Vitzthum. She even has a blog. I like her. I'd hate to give her a bad review. I read the first 20 pages and I liked what I read. I'll report back later.

So, thanks, Candace, for giving me this opportunity. I'm not sure I'm the right person for the job, but it could be fun.

Grateful for: opportunities.

Drop me a line.

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