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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Brett C. Plyler, M.D.(Northwestern Memorial Hospital)
Description: This is an examination of romantic love and all of its vagaries.
Purpose: The purpose is to explore the idea of passionate romantic love in a clinical but positive manner. The book meets these worthy objectives.
Audience: It is intended for anyone interested in the subject of romantic love and is not limited to just clinicians.
Features: This book explores passionate romantic love and its manifestations in people's lives. The author looks at everything from romantic love as an agent of change to the process of falling in love to the gender differences in love. She uses examples from her clinical practice, films, and books to illustrate her points. The book is well written and can be appreciated by both clinicians and the lay public.
Assessment: The author takes a very difficult topic, romantic love, and details a fascinating and useful examination of it. There are few other books that explore the topic so well, and love is often avoided by other authors or cast in a negative light. The author takes a positive look at the benefits and pitfalls inherent in romantic love and explores both equally. Her clinical examples are appropriate and the literary/film references help to provide a setting or situation that everyone can appreciate. I particularly enjoyed the section on the paradoxes and struggles in love and I gained a new perspective on some of my patients' difficulties. I would recommend this title to anyone, clinician or lay person, interested in romantic love.