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Essays In Love Paperback – Abridged, 20 Jan 2006


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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Picador; Abridged edition edition (20 Jan. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330440780
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330440783
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 1.5 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 14,800 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Alain de Botton is the author of Essays in Love (1993), The Romantic Movement (1994), Kiss and Tell (1995), How Proust can Change your Life (1997), The Consolations of Philosophy (2000) The Art of Travel (2002), Status Anxiety (2004) and most recently, The Architecture of Happiness (2006).


Product Description

Review

"Imagine, of all impossible things, a young British Woody Allen with the benefit of a classical education and you have the nameless and exquisitely erudite narrator of Essays in Love."
-- "Boston Sunday Globe"
"The book's success has much to do with its beautifully modeled sentences, its wry humor, its unwavering deadpan respect for its reader's intelligence." -- Francine Prose in "The New Republic"

About the Author

Alain De Botton was born in 1969. He is the author of The Romantic Movement, Kiss and Tell, How Proust Can Change Your Life, The Consolations of Philsophy, The Art of Travel and Status Anxiety . His work is translated into 20 languages. He lives in London. For more information, consult www.alaindebotton.com.

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

52 of 55 people found the following review helpful By Cath B VINE VOICE on 16 May 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a wonderful book. It charts the development of a relationship between the speaker and a woman he meets on a flight. Everyone will undoubtedly relate to the different stages of the relationship, from initial uncomfortable exchanges, charged with expectation, to the concern that you are more involved than your object of desire. It's a book that contains moments of high humour and accurately depicts the frustrations, confusions, joy and desolate despair that only romantic entanglement can bring. Neatly suffused with readable and thought provoking asides, this is a fantastic book - read it.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Alison TOP 500 REVIEWER on 26 Jan. 2010
Format: Paperback
This was my second experience of reading Alain de Botton's work (I recently read A Week at the Airport: A Heathrow Diary, highly recommended) and for me it was another very enjoyable book. I've not, so far, been much of a philosophical reader and there is much philosophy is this book. I admit that I had to check the meaning of some of the philosophical words that he uses but in the main his writing is accessible and easy to follow. Where I did have to check meaning, I feel that I have learnt more about philosophy. So, not only was the book enjoyable (I'm sure that we will all identify with at least some elements of his descriptions of the journey of a relationship) but it was also a philosophical learning experience for me too.

It feels like a young person's relationship and de Botton did write the book in his 20s. The book is categorised as fiction and even has an alternative title for the US market of "On Love: A Novel" but it is not a novel in the conventional sense. There is an overall story as de Botton charts his relationship with Chloe but at each stage of the relationship he examines the philosophy and inner workings of a relationship. It feels like non-fiction and I wonder how much of the relationship is fictional and how much is based on one or more relationships that de Botton has had in the past.

The numbering of paragraphs seemed odd but it's certainly an engaging read and I would recommend it.
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25 of 30 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 27 Mar. 2002
Format: Paperback
This really is the most increible book. Charting a relationship from start to finish, the author manages to capture the heart of human relationships with amazing insight.
The novel is so true to life that I found myself mirrored within the pages of the novel and I am sure I am not the only one.
This book is wonderful, truly. If you are contemplating buying one of Alain de Botton's novels, start with this one.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 25 Nov. 2001
Format: Paperback
This is one of the most wonderful books I have ever read. It will no doubt remain my breaking up bible. Alain de Botton captures the thoughts that each and every one of us have when we find someone, fall in love and lose them. It reminds us there is hope and that we are not alone. More than this though it is honestly a fantastic book, just to read, and to enjoy
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By Peter Cronin on 16 July 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This wasn't really what I expected. I have a lot of time for Alain de Botton, I loved 'A Week At The Airport' and enjoyed 'The Consolations of Philosophy'. I think my problem with this book was my expectation; I thought it would be thoughtful essays on the subject of love. And I wanted a happy ending. My guess is that de Botton wrote this as a way of dealing with the break up of his relationship with Chloe. The book tells the story of their relationship and their eventual break up when she goes off with one of Alain's work colleagues.

The book analyses the relationship and Alain's feelings therewith. The start is absolutely gorgoeus, storytelling their fall into love. But they break up. I just wish they hadn't. Alain meets someone else at the end though. I just wanted something a bit happier, this is maybe a more truthful look at love, more realistic, less romantic.

Nevertheless I enjoyed the book, I think the fruit of it's use will become more apparent when I next have a relationship, it's certainly a book that stays with you.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 26 Jun. 2005
Format: Paperback
Alain de Botton's 'Essays in Love' is a thought-provoking masterpiece in the description of western society's most powerful emotion. The analysis of the stages of his love affair with Chloe are fresh in viewpoint and full of the dissection needed to conquer such an emotive topic without ever becoming suffocatingly sickly. If you've ever fallen in love and have wondered whether feelings of inadequacy are unique then you should read this. It combines a beautifully penned introduction to European philosophy with a thorough scrutiny of love that will provide a real truth to an experience often impossible to analyse on a personal basis. I loved this book almost as much as the woman who recommended it.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 6 May 1999
Format: Paperback
The title doesn't exactly give it away, but de Botton's novel owes much to Stendhal's "Love". A charmingly told tale of falling in and out of love, it combines the erudition that de Botton has made part of his style (especially in "How Proust Can Change Your Life") with a modern romance told with humour and grace. Reviewed like this, it doesn't sound that impressive - but read "Essays in Love" and you'll soon be grabbing at everything else this brilliant young author has written - I did, and I've yet to be disappointed by him.
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