Author:  Melissa Pimentel
Publisher: Penguin Books
ISBN:  0143127284

Love by the Book, by Melissa Pimentel, is a story centering around unlucky in love Lauren. Lauren left her home, family, and significant other in America to move to London for a job and new life adventures. She was excited about meeting new and different men, but after some time on the dating scene she realizes that men are men, no matter their nationality.  They either run full steam away from commitment, are 'scrubs,' or want to settle down way too quickly. Since Lauren just exited a serious relationship she isn't looking to fall in love.  She just wants a normal man to laugh and spend time with.  However, Lauren comes to the conclusion that she must be doing something wrong because she is striking out at every turn.

In Love by the Book, Lauren decides to conduct a science experiment revolving around her dating life. Every month she will read a dating self-help book and apply the theory to her love life. What results is a laugh out loud account of her dating misadventures. One month she is demure and quiet Lauren, then she morphs into flirtatious Lauren, followed by abstinent Lauren, and so on. She keeps this up for 8 months and allows each book to take her on new dating adventures with different partners. Her mission is not to find a boyfriend and settle down, instead she is hoping to find out if any of the dating books actually work and she wants to 'have frequent sex with people of sound mental and physical health.' 

I loved Lauren's relationship with her roommate, Lucy. No matter which harebrained scheme Lauren comes up with, Lucy is with her every step of the way, as you would expect your best friend to be.  Lucy is fun and free spirited and loyal to a fault. When Lauren moves to London, Lucy quickly takes her under her wings, what develops is a lasting friendship. I also enjoyed reading about Lauren and 'The Angry Bookseller.' He was always the first to disapprove and make a sarcastic remark about Lauren's monthly self-help purchase. Every time she entered his bookstore they would argue and I would like him more.

In the end, Lauren realizes that she couldn't take anymore advice from authors who didn't know her or her circumstances. She was exhausted from all of the dating and trying to be someone she wasn't. It was then that she decided her mission would be to focus solely on herself.  Surprisingly, when her attitude and way of thinking changed is when everything shifted. However, I will leave that twist to you readers! 

Melissa Pimentel's Love by the Book is a fun and lighthearted novel that is also honest and touching. I definitely recommend Love by the Book to all of the Chick Lit lovers out there! Pimentel won't disappoint and the novel will be out just in time for Valentine’s Day!


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