In The List: A Modern Guide to Dating, author Kennet Bath offers dating advice, from how to use dating apps effectively to maintaining relationships once they begin.
The author starts by suggesting readers create a list of their priorities. “Before embarking on a dating journey,” he writes, “it’s crucial to ask yourself, ‘What are your desires and goals?” He then discusses how to navigate online dating and dating apps (examining, for example, the ins and outs of creating a dating profile) and the pitfalls of online dating, including fake profiles created by unscrupulous users for entertainment (pranks), financial exploitation or catfishing (the act of luring members into romantic relationships under false pretenses for a variety of reasons).
Advice about online dating and dating app issues comprises about one-third of the book. The remainder is devoted to oft-heard advice that’s relevant regardless of how one finds a dating partner. Empathy, active listening, first-date conversation starters and respecting boundaries are some of the areas covered.
While the author’s advice is sound, it can be repetitive (for example, “Communication is key”—or a variation on the theme—appears more than ten times). Often, the advice is so broad that readers may have difficulty implementing it; for example, the author suggests readers “Be assertive in expressing [their] needs, boundaries, and desires” but fails to offer concrete steps to achieve this for readers who aren’t naturally assertive.
Additionally, many sentences puzzle, as in: “[In a blended family], the children must be involved in all decisions, and each have a voice, when it is time to go to bed the children must know for themselves if it is time for them to sleep and so on, you understand what I mean, I hope.”
Those seeking basic advice about relationships will find the broad strokes here. But they’ll want to look elsewhere for more action-oriented advice on how to implement it.
Also available as an ebook.