How to Stay in a Happy Relationship or End an Abusive One by Oss St. Taylor

How to Stay in a Happy Relationship or End an Abusive One

Step by Step Clever Guide to a Great Relationship & e-Dating in the 21st Century
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KIRKUS REVIEW

St. Taylor’s debut guide offers derisive opinions on modern dating.

The book’s subtitle promises a “Clever Guide to a Great Relationship and e-Dating in the 21st Century.” However, it’s mainly a takedown of the entire institution of dating, with a particular disdain for relationships formed online. When the author isn’t espousing the obvious—“It is unlawful to use online dating to kidnap young people into trafficking”—he offers highly charged opinions about dating in contemporary society, calling it “frivolous,” “dangerous” and “diabolical.” The repetitive text is sometimes so sarcastic that it may be hard for readers to know what to take seriously; for example, the author denigrates men who don’t respect women and often refers to men as “cheapskates,” yet he also writes that “[w]omen talk a lot about too many things, some are mostly irrelevant.” St. Taylor claims that Americans loathe advice, and perhaps that’s why he devotes the majority of his text to insults rather than guidance; for example, the book asserts that gays marry only for work-related benefits. It smartly suggests running background checks on prospective mates, but takes it to an extreme. It also veers off into vaguely related topics, such as the history of marriage in Asian, African, and Middle Eastern cultures and crime rates in Britain versus America, and as a result, it suffers from a lack of coherence. Although the author rationally suggests that the United States should stop aiding other countries and instead use the money for domestic purposes, it’s questionable how this suggestion relates to e-dating. (In another reactionary measure, the book proposes that 24-hour cameras be installed on all cars, computers, mobile phones and TVs to “deter all evil people.”) The book does offer case studies of people who have met online, but overall, readers will likely be left without a clear grasp of its overall point.

An unfocused collection of brutal opinions about daters and dating.

Pub Date: Sept. 5th, 2013
ISBN: 978-1492288657
Page count: 466pp
Publisher: CreateSpace
Program: Kirkus Indie
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