Tuesday, July 21, 2015

book review: Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari

The basics: Modern Romance is a hilarious and informative book about modern romance. It's part comedy, part sociology and part memoir that discovers what and how we love, date, have sex, and marry today.

My thoughts: I did not watch The Office, so I did not discover my love for Aziz Ansari until his Netflix stand-up special, which I thought was hilarious, and I enjoy stand-up less than the average person. So when I heard the premise of this book was a take on one of the funnier bits from that stand-up routine, I jumped at the chance to read it.

Modern Romance isn't what I expected. It is not a typical celebrity comedian memoir, but there are still fascinating (and hilarious) insights into Ansari's life. He frankly discusses his own love life and pontificates on his happily married parents, who have an arranged marriage.

Mr. Nomadreader and I have been together almost ten years, so I have never dated in the age of Tinder. I didn't even have Facebook when we started dating. There is a lot I don't know about what it's like to date today, and Ansari explored his own dating life, but he also shared fascinating insights about how different dating is across the United States (the distinctions between large cities, small cities and small towns was particularly illuminating) and in other parts of the world. Through focus groups, audience members at his comedy shows, legitimate sociological research (with co-author Erik Klinenberg), and his own experience, Ansari has created a unique research artifact that is both entertaining and informative.

Favorite passage:  "That's the thing about the Internet: It doesn't simply help us find the best thing out there; it has helped to produce the idea that there is a beat thing and, if we search hard enough, we can find it. And in turn there are a whole bunch of inferior things that we'd be foolish to choose."

The verdict: Modern Romance was as funny as I hoped, but it's layered with deep thinking and fascinating sociological data I didn't expect. This unusual combination helps make it impulsively readable. It's entertaining, hilarious, and informative.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 
Length: 288 pages
Publication date: June 16, 2015 
Source: publisher

Convinced? Treat yourself! Buy Modern Romance from Amazon (Kindle edition.)

Want more? Visit Aziz Ansari's website, like him on Facebook, and follow him on Twitter.

As an affiliate, I receive a small commission when you make a purchase through any of the above links. Thank you for helping to support my book habits that bring more content to this blog!


  1. I'm listening to this on audio right now and am really enjoying it!

  2. I may need to check this out. Sounds like a great combo...and I always love some data.


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