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Decoding Love: Why it Takes Twelve Frogs to Find a Prince, and Other Revelations from the Science of Attraction Paperback – 1 Feb 2010

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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Hay House UK (1 Feb. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1848501803
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848501805
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 2 x 20 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,199,019 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


Revealed, the bizarre but true scientific secrets of attraction. (Daily Mail 2010-02-03)

Science and statistics can offer the best help with our quest for romance. (Daily Mail 2010-02-03)

Drawing on a variety of studies from different arenas including economics, game theory and evolutionary psychology, Trees uses scientific enquiry to create a more substantial insight into love. (The Independent 2010-02-02)

From the Back Cover

You meet someone.

You fall in love.

If all goes well, that person falls in love with you

and you live happily ever after.

Yet is finding love really that straightforward?

Andrew Trees draws from the latest studies in economics,

neuro-chemistry, game theory, evolutionary psychology and

other fields to take on a topic we all think we understand -

how we fall in love - and turn it on its head.

Discover why:

ce. rtain perfume fragrances make you appear slimmer

human testicle size is an indicator of our promiscuous past.

you need to date 12 people to find Mr or Mrs Right, .

and the mathematical theory behind it.

Page turning, thought provoking and sparkling with wit,

Decoding Love offers surprising new insights into the nature

of attraction, as well as an intimate look at the strange

intersection of romance and the modern world of dating.

Andrew Trees is the author of the bestselling

novel Academy X, as well as several works on

American History. He has taught at a

number of colleges and universities.

He currently lives in New York City.

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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Sarah Durston TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 8 Oct. 2010
Format: Paperback
`Decoding Love' is billed as a book which draws on the latest studies in neuroscience, economics and evolutionary psychology in order to explain the science underlying our feelings of attraction and love. I hadn't quite expected that it would also decide to `interpret' some of the research and use it to provide dating tips; but this was only a small part of why I had such a problem with this book.

It will fast become apparent, to anyone who has read some of the more accessible science books, that this is not the work of an academic who knows their subject well. It's actually a book that has been cobbled together by someone who has a journalist's background and who has not referenced the book properly in order for it to remain `reader-friendly'. His words. One of the main issues I have with this is that I have read some of the research Trees refers to and so I know it has been misinterpreted and misapplied to suit his arguments.

The book goes from some mildly interesting discourse into a chapter on dating advice which includes such gems as:

(For men) `If you are not tall, consider getting lifts.' P212

Or `Become a feminist - not because it's the right thing to do but for the chicks!' p211


(For women) `Speak with a high-pitched voice. Men find it more appealing' p214

Do I need to say more? This is a horrible, insidious little book masquerading as real science. Save your money!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 20 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
The Mind in Love 31 May 2011
By T. Stewart - Published on
Decoding Love, by Andrew Trees, is mainly about the research done about attraction between two people. Throughout the book, the reader learns about the role that our subconscious plays in love and dating. Research shows that everything around us plays a role, from seeing someone for the first time, all the way to falling in love and wanting to spend the rest of our lives with that person. The book also explains that the expectations we have before hand about the person we want and should love has a lot to do with whether we become interested in someone or not.

The reviews for this book included one by Jancee Dunn--the author of But Enough About Me. She recommended this book, saying the author "takes on the subject both familiar and deeply mysterious and breaks down the science behind it in the most entertaining way imaginable." I agree with Dunn, Decoding Love captured my attention immediately, and it is very easy to read. There is not much vocabulary that is hard to understand, and the words really flow together. I have to say, though, that after a few chapters the information started to be repeated, but it was also presented with new information, which managed to keep me reading.

The appropriate audience for this book is mainly people who are beginning to enter the dating world, and those who still have yet to find the one they love, because this book goes deep into allowing our subconscious to do what it is supposed to, even though we are not aware of it. But anyone else can read this book as well in order to understand what is behind falling in love and the process it takes. The book is also just entertaining so it is a good read even if the subject itself is not interesting.

Trees uses overgeneralization when he says, "If someone fits the profile we think we are supposed to love, we may ignore how we actually feel." When he uses the word "we" he is including everyone, which is an overstatement since there are many people who don't necessarily have an idea of who they would want to love.

I definitely recommend this book to anyone who is interested in knowing how our mind works when presented with the idea of love and understand just how everything around us is important when falling in love.

Senior English Student 2011
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Well Done 25 Sept. 2010
By Scott Donnelly - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was surprised how much I liked this book. I was expecting some trite observations and generalizations but found something incredibly well researched, comprehensive and well written. The author clearly did mountains of research in cross disciplinary areas of cognitive psych, heuristics, evolutionary psych, anthropology and sociology with a unifying theme of how these affect our relationship decision making in ways we don't ... It's simpler, but akin to a Gladwell book in it's scope and ability to fascinate and surprise. Definite thumbs up.
9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Great Compilation 24 April 2009
By C. P. Anderson - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Love is a many-splendored thing. It's also how we, as a species, manage to reproduce and survive. This book looks at love from the latter perspective. In that vein, it discusses love (and sex) through some very non-romantic lenses - psychology, evolutionary and otherwise; economics; game theory; physiology; non-verbal communication ...

Trees really does cover all the bases here. This topic is a particular interest of mine and I've picked up bits and pieces from all over the place. This is the first book I've come across, though, that really puts it all in one place.

If you're familiar with this stuff, it's all there - David Buss, The Red Queen, bonobos, The Paradox of Choice, oxytocin, vasopressin, Helen Fisher, waist-to-hip ratios, Frans de Waal ... you name it. At the same time, though, you'll probably also learn a thing or two.

If you're not familiar, however, you'll learn quite a lot. For example, do you know why humans have larger testicles than gorillas, but smaller ones than chimpanzees? How many years do you think being single take off your life? Why are there so few genes on the Y chromosome? To be able to attract a female, how much extra money does a man have to make per inch under 6' he is? What kind of smelly male T-shirts are women attracted to?

In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if you'll become something of an expert, as Trees covers just about everything. He also does so in a very lucid, engaging style - something that can't be said for all the experts. I can't really imagine a better introduction.

The only problems I had with the book were in the last few chapters. One of these is ostensibly a list of do's and don'ts. Most of these were prefaced in the rest of the book, but some of them were simply a grab bag of things he wanted to introduce and hadn't had a chance to do so yet. These were mostly of the form "A study said that x, so you'll definitely want to do x." No discussion, no debate, no counter-arguments, no nuances. Some readers might even see this as a problem for the rest of the book too.

Another thing that was a lacking was a happy ending. Believe me, a lot of this stuff is incredibly depressing. And it's not that Trees didn't have a chance to. His last chapter talks about marriage, which had a number of good things to be said for it. In particular, I was struck how happily married couples tend to idealize their partners. What a great way to end such a depressing book. I think Trees recognized this idea's potential, but he really didn't play it up as much as he could.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Decoding Love 19 Nov. 2012
By Kindle Customer - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I am unsure that I can add any more to the reviews that already have been written about this book. I liked it very much and enjoyed reading about all the research that has been done relative to coupling and couple relationships. I believe Mr. Trees has done an excellent job of presenting the research and incorporating his own notes and perspectives. I am unsure as to what I was looking for when I purchased this book. I had read some of the reviews and other independent reviews done in another website that I am a member of and became intrigued by the subject and about what Mr. Trees had to say about it. I was definitely not disappointed and although I am now a senior citizen, reading this book is one more time proof that you learn something new everyday - and I learned quite a bit from it. Although I am a senior, age-wise, I am a young senior and a widow, looking to find someone else to spend the rest of my life with and in this effort I am trying to find books that will give me some clues as to what love and life as a couple is all about today, oh, heck, and just about finding love again and getting into a very different scope and field of dating. I haven't dated in decades; the bar scene is definitely not for me, the dating websites are different and strange - and you never know who and what you're going to find "sight unseen"; however this book gave me a good glance of things that are happening today, some new, some not so new, but it was helpful and mostly enjoyable to read. In fact, I liked it so much, I purchased a second Kindle copy of the book to gift to a friend. If you're trying to find more about the biology of finding and being with a mate and/or some additional information and tips, this is a book you should read.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
A fantastic, funny compendium of the science of love and attraction 22 July 2014
By Dr Ali Binazir - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
I stumbled upon this book on a trip to New York City after stepping into a bookstore, vowing not to buy any more books, and getting it anyway. Re-reading this three years later, I'm so glad I broke that silly vow! Andrew Trees boils down reams of books and papers on the science of human courtship into easy-to-read and very funny chapters covering the entire spectrum of human love -- unconscious drives, evolutionary psychology, the economics of courtship, societal mores, and maintaining long-term relationships. A scholar himself, he does an excellent job of citing the primary sources behind all of his facts and getting the science right.
Strictly speaking, this is not a prescriptive self-help book. But it wouldn't take a giant leap of imagination to improve your love life by applying the hundreds of useful nuggets Trees cites. In addition to the richness and diversity of his sources, I'm particularly impressed by how he manages to present controversial data in an evenhanded, noncontentious way. (e.g. "A Brief Intermission to Consider the Question of Monogamy").
If you are at all interested in understanding how human beings tick in the domain of love and courtship, this is essential reading along with Love Signals: A Practical Field Guide to the Body Language of Courtship. I'll be keeping this very useful book near my desk as a reference for a long time to come.
-- Ali Binazir, M.D., M.Phil, author of The Tao of Dating: The Smart Woman's Guide to Being Absolutely Irresistible, the highest-rating dating book on Amazon for 157 weeks
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