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5.0 out of 5 stars Keep your pencil handy; you'll want to take notes
Heard the taped version of MARS AND VENUS ON A DATE
by John Gray . . . extremely informative (at least to me) tour
of the five stages of dating: attraction, uncertainty, exclusivity, intimacy, and engagement.
Gray presents ideas on how to find your soul mate, as well
as thoughts on how to create a loving and mutually fulfilling
relationship...
Published on June 27 2002 by Blaine Greenfield

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Dating advice for traditional men and women
I borrowed this book from my brother about four years ago. Four years later I have been married for three years and decided to finally read the book.
Summary:
The basic idea of the book is that there are five stages to the dating process:
1. Attraction
2. Uncertainty
3. Exclusivity
4. Intimacy
5. Engagement
The rest of the book is...
Published on Jan. 28 2003


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Dating advice for traditional men and women, Jan. 28 2003
I borrowed this book from my brother about four years ago. Four years later I have been married for three years and decided to finally read the book.
Summary:
The basic idea of the book is that there are five stages to the dating process:
1. Attraction
2. Uncertainty
3. Exclusivity
4. Intimacy
5. Engagement
The rest of the book is a collection of insights on how to make relationships successful or how to recognize when it is time to end a relationship.
My Comments:
First, I must admit that being involved in a traditional relationship (I am a married heterosexual) the insights in the book seemed fairly relevant and well designed. But, this is also one of the problems I see with the book. The book is designed exclusively for traditional, heterosexual relationships. If you are not a man or a woman looking for someone of the opposite sex to marry, then this isn't the book for you. The ultimate goal, as defined in the book, is marriage. If you are not looking to get married, then this isn't the book for you.
The book is written from a very traditional perspective. With the increase in non-traditional relationships (homosexuality, bisexuality, cohabitation, etc.) this book could alienate a lot of people. Also, there are continual references to God throughout the book. These references often coincide with a concept the author calls 'soul mates'. There is a trend in American society away from the traditional view of God, specifically seeing God as an active force in people's lives. As a result, this book could also alienate those people that don't believe in God or don't feel that God is active in their lives. And the idea of soul mates (as Dr. Gray outlines it in the book it is the idea that there is one special person for you out there) is, in my humble opinion, very outdated. Perhaps Dr. Gray isn't arguing that there is only ONE person that you could marry, but he seems to think that there aren't very many - if there is more than one - and that they are hard to find.
Another major problem with this approach to relationships is that Dr. Gray presents relationships in a very functional sense. Let me explain... Instead of saying that perhaps the way people approached romantic relationships in the past (pre 1990) may not have been the best way to do it (men calling women, being responsible for everything that takes place, women being receptive rather than aggressive, etc.), Dr. Gray incorporates all of these things into his theory about how relationships and dating are supposed to work. He seems to argue that because these behaviors exist they must be necessary. This is a circular argument from which one cannot escape. They are necessary so they must exist. They exist because they are necessary. I would argue that the traditional dating patterns of bygone ages are outdated and anti-modal. Sure, he offers ideas and thoughts where men and women can change, but he also seems to be arguing that a lot of things should just plain stay the same. I disagree out right with this idea. We live in a different time.
I should also mention that the version I read is 370 pages long. It could have been condensed to about 150 pages and still covered everything he wanted to say adequately.
On the positive side, because I am in a heterosexual relationship, I did find some of Dr. Gray's insights helpful. However, the one's that I found applicable to my relationship I found by sifting through the broad, sweeping claims he makes about genders and in between comments about how God will help us find our partner and how we can find a soul mate; all of which I thought was worthless trash.
Overall, this book would be useful to someone that firmly believes in God, wants a traditional relationship with a woman, and believes that the old way of dating/courting is still the right way. If this describes you (it probably describes over 60% of the U.S. population, meaning Dr. Gray understands there is a market for this type of stuff) then this would be a good book. If you don't meet this criteria, look elsewhere.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Solid, but a minor warning to shy readers, April 10 2004
By 
DBW (Chicago, IL USA) - See all my reviews
John Gray's "Mars and Venus On a Date" is a solid piece of work, with well-reasoned insights into the dynamics of male-female romantic relationships.
One note, though, to men who are shy, and might see the book as a guide to learning how to get dates more easily. Shyness is not really addressed here. This is by no means meant as a criticism, but given the notoriety of the "Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus" books, many men may wonder if this kind of help is being offered here.
The closest Gray comes to touching on shyness is when he says that many men get tongue-tied when approaching women they're attracted to, and that usually the best advice is to say the most simple thing ("Hi, I'm John," etc.). He also briefly touches on the various ways women might flirt, and the ways to tastefully send out non-verbal cues that you're interested. This territory is covered in a total of maybe three paragraphs, at different points in the book. One of the last sections touches on dozens of places to meet your soulmate.
The book is great for people who don't have any trouble in the initial, attraction phase. But for those who can't get to that first approach, this may not be the best place to start.
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4.0 out of 5 stars All Stages Are Necessary, Aug. 22 2003
The book describes the five stages of courtship: attraction, uncertainty, exclusivity, intimacy, engagement. Although different people have called these stages different things, the second stage is the one that is unique to this book. When a couple begins dating, there is inevitably a period of uncertainty. Even if someone expresses his undying love on Friday night (and really means it), he can change his mind by Saturday morning. This period of uncertainty can really throw the other person off. "How can he possibly not love me today, when he loved me yesterday? What happened? What changed?"
As a dating expert, I know first-hand that people are most confused by this period of uncertainty. And John Gray uncovers another gem-much uncertainty is caused by rushing intimacy. Once you understand this concept that, your next relationship will have a much greater chance of success if you follow the five stages of courtship in the order they were intended.
This book is more like reading Shakespeare than flipping through the pages of Cosmopolitan. John Gray's writing style reflects the fact that he spent many years in school, writing thesis after thesis. Although it may be more fun to watch Sex and the City, reading this book will be a lot cheaper than reclining on a therapist's couch. Plus, you'll be one step closer to a lasting relationship.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A good read, but form your own opinions..., Aug. 10 2003
By 
K. Fulton (Colorado) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This book has some good points and bad points. Like most relationship guides (i.e. The Rules), if you agree with what the author is saying, it's a good book. If you don't agree with them, it's a bad book. I think the point to take away with this book is that John Gray has talked to a LOT of people about relationships and the suggestions and information in this book is based on what he learned from talking to real people.
For example, he talks about why men don't call after a date. I had no idea that if a man didn't call you, it doesn't necessarily mean he doesn't like you. It's good to know the other reasons why he's not calling, and that not only is it okay for you to call him, but you SHOULD call him because it'll let him know that you're not mad at him for not calling!
He does have some very old fashioned views, such as, the man should always pay for the dates. Nevermind if the man makes $25K a year and the woman makes $70K... now-a-days that kind of thinking is just not practical. He also says some strange things like, if a man opens a car door for you, you should not reach over and unlock his door because that will take away all the pleasure that he got from opening the car door for you.
All in all, it's a good read, has some good information about the five stages of dating, why men and women act the way they do, how to talk to each other, and how to act. Take what you agree with and use it, but form your own opinions. Don't follow it like it's a bible.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Some Good Advise, March 15 2003
By 
G. J Wiener (Westchester, NY USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Mars and Venus On A Date is indeed a very enriching read. Many but not all romantic relationships do fall into John Gray's five stages of Attraction, Uncertainty, Exclusive, Intimacy, and Marriage. The attraction levels of Physical, Emotional, Intellectual, and Spiritual are explained quite well from both the Venus and Mars perspective.
Common arguments are discussed in great detail. Never try to solve a woman's problem and never offer unsolicated advice to a man. Also to either sex, just apologize without making excuses. Admit your faults and the other party will be more forgiving.
I don't necesarilly agree with Gray's assessment that a woman should not reach over to open the car door for a man early in the dating process. Truthfully its a minor issue and its not worth the emphasis that it was given.
Good emphasis on what men and women need in a partner and their lives. Men like to feel that what they have to offer is needed. Its Ok to use men to a point. Women don't want to have to do it all. They get depressed if they realize that they have to do everything themselves.
Some good analysis and common sense. Overall it gets my seal of approval.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Keep your pencil handy; you'll want to take notes, June 27 2002
By 
Blaine Greenfield "eclectic reader" (Belle Meade, NJ) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Heard the taped version of MARS AND VENUS ON A DATE
by John Gray . . . extremely informative (at least to me) tour
of the five stages of dating: attraction, uncertainty, exclusivity, intimacy, and engagement.
Gray presents ideas on how to find your soul mate, as well
as thoughts on how to create a loving and mutually fulfilling
relationship . . . he has the ability to make sense out
of ordinary situations that appear easy to handle, yet in
reality are anything but that.
I know I liked the material, in that I had to get a copy of
the book (after listening) so that I could share just a
few of the many memorable passages . . . among them:
* When you [a man] make a mistake, use a negative
adjective--a "nadjective"--to describe yourself or what
you did. These are a few examples:
I'm sorry that I was late. . . . I was really inconsiderate.
I'm sorry about the things I said yesterday . . . I thought
about it and realized that I was overreactive.
I'm sorry I didn't call you back sooner. You're right; I was
really insensitive.
I'm sorry that I forgot to get the tickets. It was really
selfish of me.
I'm sorry you felt excluded at the party. . . I was
inconsiderate, it was really mean.
I am really sorry about the things I said. I was really
being defensive.
* Women will appreciate any sincere compliment, but when
a man puts a little more thought into his words, she
will like it more. . . . The more special the adjective, the
more special she feels. These are some examples:
PLAIN COMPLIMENT (PC) vs. JUICY COMPLIMENT (JC)
PC, That is a nice picture. JC, You are incredibly artistic.
PC, You look good tonight. JC, You look magnificent tonight.
PC, You have a nice smile. JC, You have a radiant smile.
PC, You look good. JC, You are so gorgeous.
PC, You look nice. JC, You are so lovely.
PC, You look nice. JC, You look beautiful.
PC, That is a nice dress. JC, You look so exquisite in that dress.
PC, You have nice eyes. JC, You have such a special sparkle in your eyes.
Even a plain compliment can be juiced up with any of these
five simple words: so, really, very, always, and such.
[For example, to juice up the most basic compliment, "You look nice."]
1. You look so nice. (attraction)
2. You look really nice. (interest)
3. You look very nice. (enthusiasm)
4. You always look nice. (familiarity)
5. You have such a nice look. (pride)
To express more feeling in a compliment, he can just repeat
any of these words or combine them like this:
1. You look so, so nice
2. You really look so nice.
3. You look very, very nice.
4. You always look so nice.
5. You really have such a nice look.
Women can also use these five words to express more
feeling in their indirect compliments to a man. Let's apply
these five words to one of the most basic compliments that
any man loves to hear, "I am happy we did this."
1. I am so happy we did this.
2. I am really happy we did this.
3. I am very happy we did this.
4. I am always happy to do this.
5. I am so happy; I had such a good time.
* When a woman talks about problems, a man mistakenly
assumes that she is asking him what to do about them.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Read, One of the Best on the Market, March 10 2002
By 
Elena Alperovich (Burlington, MA USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
When I've read the famous/infamous 'The rules' I was in doubt; but when I've read 'Mars and Venus on a Date' I was convinced... The controversial 'The rules' uses time old and wise observations (even though they are oversimplified and sound manipulative), but this book takes those 'truths' and explains them from the point of view of human psychology. I understand why feminists might hate this book and why they might think it takes us (females) back a hundred years -- (if you happen to be one - the book might be that proverbial red cloth for a bull). The bottom line is -- we (as in males, females, species etc.) are created particular way... information written in our genes, many hundreds of thousands years ago, necessary for the survival of the species, regardless whether we are nice guys/girls or jerks and 'game players'. Men and women act and feel and are motivated by certain things, and not because we are mean or manipulative. I've scanned quite a few books on the subject of dating and interpersonal psychology and this book is an eye opener for those of us who can't figure out whether we should be our authentic selves in every situations or whether there is a necessity to follow some sort of rules or guidelines for successful dating. (I compare it to polite and acceptable rules of, say, behaving at a dinner table). Buy it and read it!! (it's about a buck on half.com) and even if you disagree, you will benefit from this alternative and precious knowledge!!
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2.0 out of 5 stars MAYBE JOHN GRAY NEEDS TO GO WITH MARS OR VENUS ON A DATE!!!, Feb. 14 2002
By 
B. h Grey "Chari Krishnan" (Tango2200@Hotmail.Com) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
As much as I hate to admit it, I've finally been forced to give Dr. John Gray credit for one good idea, the 5 Stages of Dating:Attraction, Uncertainty, Exclusivity, Intimacy, and Engagement.
This concept is what attracted me to MARS AND VENUS ON A DATE, and my research supports him on this--somewhat. (Not all couples go through Stage 2--Uncertainty--some know from DAY ONE that they want each other, usually the better looking couples.)
But most of MARS AND VENUS ON A DATE is based on the same old goody two shoes baloney that personality will get you anywhere in dating, and as they say in jazz, "It ain't necessarily so!"
(If personality was so important, we'd all wanting to be dating all those people out there with great personalities--but we don't!)
If you want to read a realistic book about dating, see Leil Lowndes' HOW TO MAKE ANYONE FALL IN LOVE WITH YOU.
MAYBE JOHN GRAY NEEDS TO GO WITH MARS AND VENUS ON A DATE TO SEE HOW DATING REALLY WORKS!!!
Chari Krishnan RESEARCHKING
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4.0 out of 5 stars old-fashioned advice with psychological support, Jan. 29 2002
By 
Carol C. "ccjello" (Kansas City, MO USA) - See all my reviews
Gray describes the five stages of dating (initial attraction, uncertainty, exclusivity, intimacy, and engagement), typical male and female behaviors during each stage, and the importance of progressing sequentially through the five stages in order to forge a workable relationshuip. He explains how acting as if one is in a stage other than the stage the partner is in can sabotage a potential relationship and prevent it from progressing to the next stage. For example, if one partner is uncertain and the other partner tries to act as if the relationship is exclusive, there's probably no chance that the relationship will ever become exclusive.
Much of Gray's advice builds on traditional gender-role stereotypes, and for every comment or snippet of wisdom, he offers even-handed treatment for men and women. Men like to be needed; women like to be appreciated. Men need a job; women need an employee. Men need to be confident (that they can tackle a task single-handedly); women need to be self-assured (that things will get accomplished with the help and support of others). Men need to take charge and have a plan; women need to be receptive and responsive to the man's plan. Compliments for men should be directed toward the man's choices and achievements, not at him directly. ("That was a great movie" or "what a perfect restaurant" are ideal; he'll take them personally.) Women thrive on more direct compliments ("you look very nice").
Two things that struck me as odd -- the repeated comment that women love a man in uniform, which feeds into his position that women love men in charge; AND the tack-on list at the end of the book where Gray advises readers to meet their soul mate by deliberately going out & doing things they don't like to do. For example, "If you don't like to dance, then definitely get out there and dance. Take dance lessons and go to dance competitions." And on an airplane, "be sure to walk up and down the aisles to be seen and to see if your soulmate is there."

This book is not aimed at a male, female, young, or old audience. It targets anyone who wants to learn about dating. A die-hard feminist might find some of the guidance (such as the section on why women NEED a man) a bit offensive, though.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very informative!, Dec 14 2001
By A Customer
I tend to think that this book has given me the edge I need to not only save my relationship, but to feel extremely rewarded in it. I've noticed some reviews saying that the book describes people and situations that don't relate to them, and for them that may be accurate. For the rest of us, using common sense and applying the parts of the book that does relate, the information is right on! I've read the book through twice now and each time through find more and more application for the information in it. It also depends on the dynamics of the relationship and your ability to transfer the knowledge. It also requires an open mind and the fact that you WANT your relationship to flourish. To whomever says this book has nothing to offer and the information is false, I'll argue that they didn't really want to try, didn't have an open mind, or some how wanted their realtionship to be a failure. I never write reviews, but felt absolutely compelled to for this book. It's a one-stop relationship guide!
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