There’s a good chance I wouldn’t have believed some of the extreme claims made in this book if I hadn’t seen VH1′s reality show, The Pickup Artist, first. Whether you believe it or not, Neil Strauss’ The Game is a fun and hilarious book that will suck you in and keep you reading until you hit the back cover.
The gist of the book is as follows: Neil Strauss is asked by an editor to investigate the underground PUA (pick-up artist) community. Like most people, Strauss doubted that he would find anything legitimate, but decided to look into the assignment, partly out of self-interest. After learning some PUA techniques from Mystery, creator of the Mystery Method of seduction and perhaps the greatest PUA, and finding some success, Strauss takes on the alias “Style” and totally immerses himself in the lifestyle. Style uses the skills honed by years of writing and journalism to study the many schools of seduction and eventually emerges as one of the world’s greatest pick-up artists, rivaling and perhaps even surpassing Mystery.
Strauss packs in plenty of hilarious details about the encounters of various PUA’s in many different situations, various episodes concerning Mystery and his emotional and mental disturbances, and the events leading up to the collapse of Mystery’s ambitious Project Hollywood. Most importantly, Strauss provides his own insightful commentary on all the things the PUA community has completely wrong, namely the misogynistic tendencies of many PUA’s, the lack of originality and individual thought amongst PUA’s and the complete absence of any “techniques” for staying in healthy, long-term relationships.
Despite Mystery’s self-defeating personality, the lawlessness of Project Hollywood and having a large number of PUA’s turn against him, Style manages to keep his head on straight and even lands himself the girl of his dreams-without using any seduction techniques (they have quite the opposite effect, actually)!
Even if you don’t believe in the powers of the pick-up artist, this book is worth checking out if only for Strauss’ wonderful story of developing confidence in himself and finding happiness. And if you do think there is something to this seduction thing, then this book is a good starting point for learning some things and how to not let yourself get carried away.
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