Honestly, this is just a superlative book on what it’s like to date and be in a relationship in the present day. Aziz Ansari and Eric Klinenberg conduct studies and review data to bring a comprehensive but still accessible (in large part due to Mr Ansari’s humor and personal anecdotes) overview of modern romance. They compare present standards with historical trends, and also look at mores in Doha, Tokyo, Buenos Aires and Paris, in addition to small-town and big-city America. Modern Romance: An Investigation sets out to demystify a lot of the challenges faced by those looking for love today, and succeeds with panache. I haven’t been this impressed with a popular sociology book since Andrei S Markovits’ Offside, and am even more so given that MR:AI never flags or dries out, and deals with a much larger and more universal concept than football.
Also, Mr Ansari is hilarious. Definitely looking forward to reading more of his stuff. Hopefully, a food book next? The chapter on Tokyo had me running to make ramen with chicken, spinach and egg. His enthusiasm is infectious! Which also made the last chapter, where he gives his advice on how to cope with modern romance, that much more effective, backed up as it was with reams of fascinating data. Terrific book.