Essays in Love is a stunningly original love story. Taking in Aristotle, Wittgenstein, history, religion and Groucho Marx, Alain de Botton charts the progress of a love affair from the first kiss to argument and reconciliation, from intimacy and tenderness to the onset of anxiety and heartbreak.
©1993 Alain de Botton (P)2014 Audible, Inc.
I wouldn't recommend this book to all my friends but I know that some of them would enjoy it as much as I did. It's for romantics that think too much sometimes. It's for realists that love to fall in love nevertheless.
There are many memorable moments...but perhaps what stands out now after a couple weeks is the way intimacy in the couple is revealed and lost. The fight scenes are funny in a "oh yeah, I've been there" kinda way.
It was my first James Wilby book and I enjoyed his reading very much.
I guess it was the main male character because he's so introspective to the point of absurdity but also insightful.
The narrator's voice was sublime, as always. The story in itself was mundane, much unlike the author's take on love and his stunning talent in analyzing every psychological aspect of its every stages.
Simply could not put this book down. There are so few stories, love stories fewer still, that capture real life so well. The book itself is a beautiful mix of philosophical topics with narrative that makes for such an enlightening and enjoyable listening experience. Very well performed, I'd highly recommend it to anyone looking for a realistic love story.
I really like Alain de Botton, and really wanted to love this book but unfortunately the narrative pales in comparison to his philosophical digressions. Having said that, it did make me see my past relationships in a new light. The narrator was very good, although his female voice could be better.
Yes. The narrator made the subjects pop
Every page drew me in with the brilliant form of writing.
He performed them all beautufully
Yes, if I had the time
Well read, interesting story
Anything else by Alain de Botton, especially 'How Proust Can Change Your Life'.
"Not for the lonely ..."
Alain de Botton meticulously dissects that bizarre and complex creature: the Love Affair. He takes every emotion felt, and every action taken, and - through the magnifying glass of philosophy - analyses the whole process of falling in love. From the moment of the lovers’ first contact, through the heat of their passion, the rage of their arguments and the ridiculousness of their sulks, we hear what the philosophers - ancient and modern - have made of love.
As with everything of Alain de Botton’s that I’ve read, 'Essays in Love' is rich with ideas and beautifully written: he manages to put heart into what could otherwise be rather abstract intellectual concepts. The narrator is somewhat neurotic but in a necessary and likeable way, and I was with him through all of his trials. A wonderful book - brilliantly narrated, too - that is going to stay with me for a long time.
It wasn't what I expected, but it was a brilliant balance between being a novel and a psychological analysis of feelings of love.
"Don't 'read' when your heart is breaking"
A beautifully written piece, combining philosophy, psychology, observation and a captivating story absolutely seamlessly, and with such humour and sadness it is unputdownable. The narrator is a skilled storyteller, whose sensitivity to the subject permeates his voice. This book would be perfect for anyone who is single, starting a relationship, in a loving relationship, and in a relationship in trouble who needs some loving guidance and reflection.
But I beg you, do not read/listen to this when you're in the middle of heartbreak. I started listening after watching many School of Life videos on YouTube, finding them fascinating and comforting, and thought this book might help me heal from my break-up from a beloved of 6 years, the wounds of which are only a month old. I got up to a certain point in the story, and suddenly all the pain and grief are just as fresh and overpowering as they were 4 weeks ago when we finally realised, both of us, for the first time, that it was really over. As a consequence I've had a crappy weekend, and feel like I've taken 15 steps back in recovering from this heartbreak.
If I'd waited a few months, when the pain isn't so raw, it would have been immensely healing, but I listened too soon. I'll probably come back to hear the last few chapters in a few months, but for now I just wanted to add a "trigger warning" to this otherwise wonderful book. If your heart is breaking, wait a while. Sending love to all who read this that know the pain I'm feeling right now.
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