If you’re interested in understanding dating dynamics, making healthier relationship decisions, and carrying yourself with greater confidence, this bibliography is a great starting point. All of these books have helped shape the advice that I give to you on a regular basis.

Enjoy.

My BooksMy Books

I can't Believe I'm Buying This Book

I Can’t Believe I’m Buying This Book

My first book, written while I was working in customer care at JDate in 2002. There are a few dated references, but I’d like to think it holds up surprisingly well. Not only is it funnier than my more recent stuff, but it’s a great place to start if you’re first dipping your toes in the online dating waters.

Why You're Still Stingle

Why You’re Still Single

My second book was written, in part, as a response to “He’s Just Not That Into You”. It probably would have sold more copies if it were called “WHY He’s Just Not That Into You”. Still, the he said/she said author dynamic, the short punchy chapters and the occasional killer metaphor (“Hitting on 20”) makes this a solid entry in the “self-help lite” category.

Evan RecommendsEvan Recommends

Dating and Relationship Books

Marry Him

Lori Gottlieb knocks it out of the park with a comprehensive look at the plight of highly successful, educated women in their frustrating quest for love. Dozens of experts all point to the same conclusion – refusal to compromise is a one-way ticket to permanent single status, and the sooner you learn what’s important in a relationship, the sooner you can find the man who’s built to last.

The Tao of Dating

Dr. Ali Binazir uses his deep knowledge of the mind and Eastern philosophy to create a must-read manifesto for smart, strong, successful women. It’s brainy stuff, but it’s a worthwhile venture. I devoured this book in one night and since Alex and I agree on 95% of our material, I can give you an enthusiastic endorsement.

Getting to I Do

Dr. Pat Allen lays out some important concepts that I use in my own coaching, involving “feminine energy” and the lifecycle of relationships. She’s a Los Angeles legend, a woman I actually consulted for advice before getting married, and she really knows her stuff.

He’s Just Not Your Type

Written from a place of deep caring and experience, Syrtash points out that what we think we want, and what’s really good for us are often two different things. If this wise book doesn’t jolt you out of your old, broken dating patterns, nothing else will.

Sealing the Deal: The Love Mentor’s Guide to Lasting Love

Dr. Diana Kirschner has written one of the most practical books I’ve ever read by a therapist. There’s no dense psychobabble, just honest, wise, commonsense solutions to help you learn to connect and communicate with your romantic partner.

Mama Gena’s School of the Womanly Arts

One of the only books on this list that I haven’t read, it focuses on one of the most important topics facing smart, strong, successful women today: feminine energy. She teaches you that you never have to bend over backwards to “get” a man; you just have to be warm, sensual, and receptive to his best efforts. Amen.

Attached

The women in my FOCUS Coaching community RAVE about this book. Whether you’re anxious and don’t believe that a man can truly love you, or fearful that if you let him in, he’ll eventually leave, this book helps you understand the effects of your behavior. Soon, you can choose a partner who is a good fit for your attachment style.

Why He Didn’t Call You Back

Rachel Greenwald interviews 1000 men and learns that 85% of the time, it’s not just “chemistry” that prevents him from calling you back. It’s something you actually did on the date. Knowledge is power, and, by reading this book, you’ll immediately learn what you’ve inadvertently been doing wrong, and how to course-correct on your next date.

No More Mr. Nice Guy

Don’t let the title scare you off. Whether you’re a nice guy or a nice girl, if you’re finding that you get walked all over in relationships, this is the book for you. Learn how being nice is a pathology of its own, and how you can still be a good person and stand up for what you believe in. In fact, you’ll attract a better partner when you do.

Why Men Love Bitches

Same idea as “No More Mr. Nice Guy”, except written specifically for women. While not written by a doctor, it offers practical advice as to how a little confidence and backbone in dating can go an extremely long way.

The Game

Distasteful though it might be, this bestseller is an amazingly well-told story about a society of pick-up artists and how they manage to manipulate and seduce women. If you want a good read – closer to a novel than a self-help book – you’ll marvel at how shy, nerdy guys, armed with information, quickly turn into toxic players. A great look inside the insecure male mind.

Screw Cupid

If “The Game” told men how to talk to women, Screw Cupid shows women how to fearlessly approach cute guys. Using Scholfield’s very funny anecdotes – she used herself as a human guinea pig – you can overcome your fear of rejection and make the right guy fall for you.

Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus

The granddaddy of this genre, and a highly worthy read. I don’t think men and women are as different as Gray makes us out to be, but I do think that understanding our few differences is essential. No longer will you be consistently surprised when he doesn’t do what exactly you want him to do.

He’s Just Not That Into You

My sister said it right: it’s not a book; it’s a bumper sticker. But it’s a very important bumper sticker. If a man’s not giving you the effort that you deserve to feel safe in the relationship, he’s not your future husband. Move on.

Sociological Books on Dating and Relationships

Why We Love

Dr. Helen Fisher explains the neurobiology behind love and how it’s adapted and evolved. Chemistry, she feels, is an adaptive function designed to help us overcome the impracticality of monogamy. The high feeling of being “in love” mirror the high feeling of doing cocaine, lighting up the same brain centers. This, and other fascinating research, will illuminate your understanding of why we love.

Committed

Elizabeth Gilbert, of Eat, Pray, Love fame, writes a memoir and exploration about marriage. With sparkling prose and clear-eyed research, she points out the many benefits of marriage and the value of having a realistic set of expectations.

Unhooked Generation

Jillian Straus takes a sociological look at why Generation X has remained single for far longer than our parents’ generation. Money, unrealistic expectations, gender equality, Hollywood fantasy, abundant opportunity – you name it, and my generation’s suffering from its consequences. If you’re born between 1965-1976, this explains your singledom as well as anything.

First Comes Marriage

An incredibly wise book, explaining why arranged Indian marriage is as successful – or more successful – than Western-style dating. Bound by the desire to grow and commit together, Indian couples are often happier than American couples. Seth never suggests that we should adopt arranged marriage, but illustrates how having a realistic set of expectations creates healthier long-term relationships.

Books on How We Think

The Paradox of Choice

Like The Tipping Point and Freakonomics, this book presents a paradigm shift in thinking about modern society. In fact, more choices do NOT make us happier as people. Reading The Paradox of Choice literally changed my decision making in regards to dating overnight, and helped me have the courage to choose the woman who would become my wife.

How We Decide

Jonah Lehrer’s book is crucial to understanding how humans make decisions – and thus, how you can make better relationship choices. He points out how all decisions should be partially guided by logic and partially guided by emotion. In love, you’re usually way too emotional, which explains why you need to be more objective about your partner.

Predictably Irrational

Dan Ariely loves to point out – thru often entertaining science experiments – how we don’t always act in a rational manner. Sounds a lot like love to me. The more you can understand your own biases and shine the light in your blind spots, the less likely you will be to make healthy choices in life and love.

The Upside of Irrationality

Ariely’s second book explains the effects of our irrational behavior. And if you get this book only because it helps you understand that passion (for anything!) fades over time, it’s well worth the read.

Spiritual and Self-Help Books

The Untethered Soul

If you wonder if you’re emotionally healthy enough to even be in a relationship, you must read this. Belying its spiritual title, this book is filled with practical metaphors designed to empower you to let go of the negativity and fear of the past. This may be the most important book you ever read.

A New Earth

Like the Untethered Soul, except endorsed by Oprah, and a little harder to read. If you struggle with your own happiness and want to see how you are the common denominator in your life, Tolle helps you find a more Zen mindset.

How To Win Friends And Influence People

The best dating book, just not written for dating. A lot of my philosophy is cribbed from Dale Carnegie’s timeless advice. Because whether you’re in dating or in sales, ultimately, it’s all about getting people to like you. With confidence, enthusiasm, and a keen understanding about what makes people tick, the author passes along his remarkable wisdom to you.

How I Raised Myself From Failure to Success in Selling

A Dale Carnegie disciple, Frank Bettger was a top insurance salesman in the 1930’s, who figured out why people trusted him with their lives and money. In similar old school fashion, he lays out his theories, which double as incredible dating advice. A crystal-clear primer on human behavior and relationships.

Linchpin

A powerful book about confidence, uniqueness, and belief in your own value as a person. Godin is a marketing expert who is talking about how to make yourself indispensible at work, but he may as well be talking about how you need to be the leader of your own life, in every respect.