My first Alain de Botton book was a present by my high school philosophy teacher. Contrary to all my prejudices, The Consolations of Philosophy was a book that I liked dearly. Since then, I’ve meant to read Alain de Botton. So, On Love became the second book I read. Since I prefer to read mostly novels and other kinds of nonfiction, I wasn’t even planning reading this. But I couldn’t stand the name and the beauty of the cover. After The Consolations of Philosophy, I thought this would make a fantastic choice but turns out; it just made me feel old.
On Love does not include general descriptions of love or how it should be. I just want to clear that out if you’ve never read Botton before. It describes a relationship from beginning to end through the eyes of a man. In the event of falling in love, it is nice to see how we change and glorify the other. If you want to clarify some things about relationships, I think it might offer an interesting perspective.
As Proust once said, classically beautiful women should be left to men without imagination.Alain de Botton, On Love
Still, when the book was over, I felt something was missing. It was as if I expected something, and I wanted Botton to tell me all about it. There was no sense of completeness that I felt with The Consolations of Philosophy. I even thought I was wasting my time as if I was listening to a somewhat personal love story. Then I decided to focus on the good parts of it.
It is a pleasant experience to read about a couple rebuilding their worlds, languages and even behaviour while in a relationship. Therefore, you get to examine your own from a different perspective. Also, it might be fun to read the book with your partner and talk about it. Enjoy!
About the book: On Love
On Love is globally bestselling novelist-philosopher Alain De Botton’s iconic debut–the novel that launched his decorated literary career; and a funny, profound, and searingly true-to-life exploration of emotion. A man and a woman meet over casual conversation on a flight from Paris to London, and so begins a romantic story–from first kiss to the first argument, elation to heartbreak, and everything in between. Each stage of the relationship is illuminate with startling clarity, as de Botton explores emotions often felt but rarely understood. Now, in tandem with the arrival of The Course of Love–de Botton’s first novel in twenty years and one about mature passion–we celebrate the timeless debut about young passion that serves as The Course of Love’s precursor and companion.
Reissued with a brilliant introduction by the New York Times bestselling author of How Should a Person Be?Shelia Heti, This book is a contemporary classic that should read by anyone who has ever fallen in love.
About the author: Alain de Botton
Alain de Botton, FRSL is a Swiss-born British philosopher and author. His books discuss various contemporary subjects and themes, emphasizing philosophy’s relevance to everyday life. He published Essays in Love, which went on to sell two million copies.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: