Have yet to finish this book, "Complete Idiot's Guide to Dating", but I'm already compelled to warn you about some of the blatant misguidance it offers. First of all, aside from the book not being written for anyone living outside a fairy-tale world, a common theme in a lot of dating advice stuff, including this book, is to be honest about yourself, but also to "not reveal too much information too early". Isn't that a contradiction? Obviously, such things as contact information should never be given out too soon, but aspects of your appearance and personality are going to come out sooner than later anyway, so shouldn't you just be upfront right away to save time and disappointment on both sides? There is, I think, a fine line between "positive" self-image and "realistic" self-image, that is not really taken into account by the authors of this book. Withholding basic information about oneself is the same as being dishonest.
Realizing of course that this is a general dating advice book, not limited to online dating, and that the most recent edition was published five years ago, well before online dating got as huge as it now is, that section is still quite sparse. Plus, as if in the tradition of SNL's Stuart Smalley ("I'm good enough, smart enough and doggone it, people like me), a skit we all know is a spoof, the book tells you that in order to boost your self-esteem you should recite out loud verbal, positive, "self-affirmations". This, again, is part of a fairy tale world and something you probably started hearing in around fourth grade and should have given up on by eighth. It tells you a lot of things you "should" do, in fact, but does not always tell you "how". When you're frustrated enough to need a book like this in the first place, it has to be understood that changing certain behaviors are simply not as easy as this book would like to let you think. But, hey, I felt compelled to pick up the book myself, didn't I?, so what the heck do I know?