An online survey received while most people like a well-read date, ladies are more attracted to bookish humankinds than vice versa. Have you ever fallen in love or spurned someone based on their read listing? Share it in the comments below
I once went on a date with a boy who, instead of writing a full online dating profile, listed his four favourite volumes. When asked, he said it seemed simpler than writing a lengthy bio.
It was and it wasnt: the titles hed included offered a tantalising glimpse into his personality. While I didnt end up discovering whether he was as intriguing as the selection, it was a good place to start the conversation.
Im not the only one scrutinising the books included in a dating profile. Reading itself is an attractive pastime, according to research released by online dating site eHarmony. However, while well-read humankinds received almost 20% more messages than their peers, women who listed reading as a hobby received 7% less. So much for all those men who are into sapiosexuals.
Whether it be online or in dialogue, the books we choose to identify ourselves with say plenty about us. Its shorthand for what we want to signal about our own interest, intelligence and high levels of participation with “the worlds”.
What then does it say that, according to eHarmony, some of the most attractive volumes a boy can read are Walter Isaacsons biography of Steve Jobs, and George Orwells 1984; but the unattractive titles are the Harry Potter series and second world war novels?
Conversely the Harry Potter volumes are precisely those men find most attractive on a female read listing, along with The Hunger Games series, Jane Austens Pride and Prejudice and Stieg Larssons The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Despite the fact the latter are global bestsellers about luurve in all its lurid shapes, the Twilight series and Fifty Shades of Grey is a no-go for most men.
While theres a consensus that listing cookbooks or The Bible is a turn-off, theres an astonishing amount of bonding going on over Anthony Kiedis autobiography Scar Tissue and the Game of Thrones series.
Unsurprisingly, book listings are a good indicator of compatibility for Guardian staffers, whether it be forewarned by way of The Fountainhead or clicking over Harry Potter. And this is why we ask you to share your thoughts below what volumes do you find attractive in a potential spouse? And why?
I f I learnt The Fountainhead, I operated a mile
Call me negative but when I was online dating I mainly used the books listing as a admonishing rather than an attractivenes. I adoration a well-read boy, and there are infinite wonderful volumes in “the worlds” who are able to attract me to someone if are available on a dating site( Id have fallen over backwards for a boy who listed Elena Ferrantes Neapolitan series, for instance ).
But there was one common well-loved book among humankinds that if I learnt, I operated a mile: The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand. I have since detected it is one of Donald Trumps favourite volumes, one of the few studies of fiction hes ever read. Its nice to be right.
I steer clear of men who revere volumes in which ladies are merely ever bit-parts
I am deep suspicious of men who professed a profound adoration for Bret Easton Ellis, Christopher Hitchens, Hunter S Thompson, any Beat poet but especially Kerouac, and to a lesser extent Hemingway.
Speaking as someone who finishes about four volumes a year, its not a requirement that my partners are well-read. It is that they are properly, profoundly feminist not card-carrying ones whove became aware that claiming affiliation is a prerequisite to gaining access.
Its a delicate balance to strike. In my own experience of online dating, men who semaphore-signal their feminist credentials with an extensive read listing as soon as theres the opportunity are to be avoided as much as those who freely wear their misogyny.
My strategy is to steer clear of men who revere volumes in which ladies are merely ever bit-parts or accessories and always lesser . Reading volumes by ladies is a level in their favour; youd be surprised by how many humankinds dont.
I avoid women who hang out in the self-help section
Books have played a trifling role in my search for love, surely beside bonding moments over music and karaoke specifically.
My true love told me simply the coming week she has no time to read books, and who am I to argue? But as the son of a bookseller, I was elevated to avoid women who hang out in the self-help section. And yes, that includes Paulo Coelho.
I bought all his favourite volumes and read them
Years ago I had a Titanic-sized crush on a boy I worked with and appeared up his MySpace. I had not read any of the favourite volumes he listed so I bought them all and read them. One of them, Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer, remains a favourite of mine today. When I eventually got my crush into my bedroom he noticed two of the books on my shelf, commenting how much he liked them. Me too! I reacted, perhaps a little too enthusiastically.
Reader, I successfully tricked him into enjoying me and now we are married.
Harry Potter is an excellent litmus test
Im a Ravenclaw because the Pottermore quiz is moderately easy to manipulate, although tricking an online quiz into sorting me into the smart mansion likely builds me more Slytherin. I reckon Id like to date a Slytherin but typically end up with Hufflepuffs, which aims severely for all involved.
Following? Good. If youre not, we likely shouldnt date. My personality is 90% pop culture references and about 35% of that is Harry Potter. As Rob Fleming tells in High Fidelity( 10%, both book and movie ), what really matters is what you like , not what you are like. As a general rule I dont magistrate people who havent learnt or read my core texts, but it does construct me harder to understand.
The exception to the no-judgement rule is Harry Potter. Not because its so central to my identity( though it is ), but because its an excellent litmus test. The Venn diagram of people who are proud they havent read Harry Potter , not just couldnt be bothered with it but actively think that shunning a book written for children builds them intellectually superior, and people who are insufferable wankers is a circle.
She had a book on Russian political assassinations on her shelf
Finding something surprising has always piqued my concern. With my partner I received a book she had on Russian political assassinations and fake terror campaigns. When I eventually borrowed it, Blowing Up Russia: The Secret Plot to Bring Back KGB Terrorwas an interesting read.
I was struck by his participation with little-known Australian poet Lesbia Harford
My partner piqued my interest with his literary proclivities months before Id even gratified him but with his writing , not his read. When we eventually started insuring one another, we naturally talked a lot about volumes, and I remember being struck by his deep participation with the work of little-known and under-appreciated 20 th century Australian poet, Lesbia Harford.
But what sealed the deal was when, on a weekend away early in our relations, I watched him peruse a bookshelf ladened with different macho literary heavyweights, and eagerly pick up the Georgette Heyer fiction instead.
He was teaching himself English via Chaucers The Canterbury Tales
Years ago while backpacking I met an Israeli whose English was rudimentary. But he was determined to improve, and was teaching himself English via a book hed picked up at a hostel Chaucers The Canterbury Tales. Consequently, his speech was speckled with bawdy 14 th century turnings of phrase, which constructed him sound like a Middle Eastern-accented Middle English poet. It surely won me over.
I was viciously spurned for failing to read War and Peace
I was once viciously spurned on a Tinder date for failing to read War and Peace. Ill never forget the look of disdain and letdown when I confessed that Tolstoy was just not really my thing. My date bristled and, a short time later, apologized herself. She needed to meet a pal for dinner. Funnily enough we had just eaten. There was no second date.
So I try not to be too judgmental about what others read.
But I do adoration science fiction and fiction. And if Im on a date, and Neil Gaiman or Ray Bradbury come up, then Im sure well have enough to talk about for a few more drinks.
But its best not to be too snobby about it. Its a strange thing that we place so much romantic inventory in the shared adoration of a pastime that is really such a solitary activity. And I actually dont want to read War and Peace.