Crazy Little Thing - erotic book by Cleis Press Inc. - review by Adriana Ravenlust

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Love's Tea Party

I think that Crazy Little Thing would have benefited me when I was going through my divorce and it could help you through a difficult time as well. It's a great reference for me now and there's a lot to be learned from the crazy cases about the universal effect of love on people. At just over 200 pages, it's not that long and it makes for a great conversation piece, too.
Published:
Pros:
Easy to read, interesting, conversational,
Cons:
Some text is small, layout could use tweaking, pop-culture references and conversational tone
Rating by reviewer:
4
useful review
I quite enjoyed Crazy Little Thing by Liz Langley but part of the reason I enjoy it may be exactly why you don't. The back cover describes this as the light-hearted look at the science behind love and it's an extremely accurate description. Miss Langley takes us on a journey to discover how the wiring of our brains, hormones and other factors make us feel crazy in love and drive us to do crazy things.

And Crazy Little Thing has lots of science that is generally explained in an understandable way. If you're interested in this intellectually, the first two chapters focus on the workings of our brains; although, the second focuses more on the definition of love and whether animals feel it the same as humans. In each of the next chapters, the author generally focuses on a certain aspect of love and backs it up by either retelling conversations she has had with experts of the field, couples or individuals who exemplify the lesson of the chapter.

For example, in one chapter Langley talks to a carnival owner about individuals with unique (dis)abilities and characteristics who made up the shows at circuses. In another chapter, she visits a prison to talk to Nikki Reynolds who, as a teen, murdered her mother for trying to separate Nikki and her boyfriend. In this chapter, the woman's story resonates with Langley, as it did with me. She was experiencing feelings that many of us have felt in regards to love at one time or another. The author muses how Nikki's unique brain chemistry and environment contributed to her mother's murder, while others may respond in a more healthy manner.

While I wasn't able to relate to every story perfectly, Liz Langley does a great job at normalizing the feelings we have, no matter how angry, hurt, jealous, confused or otherwise crazy love makes us feel. The running theme in this book is that our brain reacts toward love in a manner comparable how it reacts when we develop an addiction and so we experience many of the same rushes and withdrawal symptoms.

At the end of her book, Liz hopes that we understand love a bit more and, at the very least, feel a little bit less alone when we feel those extreme emotions. That was true for me. Although it's no excuse to shirk personal responsibility, it does help me understand that I may have reacted -- or be reacting -- in a way that's not under my control. As Liz explains this throughout the book, she also explains that how telling people to suck it up or deal with the thoughts and feelings that aren't entirely within our control can be an isolating mistake. She suggests that the way we tend to treat broken hearts isn't helpful and I to agree.

Whether you agree or not, this book may not strike you if you're not able to deal with the countless pop-culture references and the conversational tone. At one point, I smiled when Liz wrote about her head "asploding" but you may not. One thing's for sure, it's not a dry read. I read it in just a few days because I both found the subject matter to be intriguing and the tone enjoyable.

I also found some of the organization to be odd. The book sometimes seems to detour for no good reason and Langley even comments on it. There's little asides that are printed in a much smaller font size and, if it's hard enough for me to read, others will definitely have a hard time.

While the chapters are divided into sections, which are outlined in the table of contents, the headings are actually smaller than those for the little asides and, if I recall correctly, aren't always aligned uniformly. The technical layout leaves a little bit to be desired; however, it's not a deal-breaker.

Additionally, while the content for all interesting, sometimes it was difficult to flow from one chapter to another because it didn't necessarily relate or I couldn't quite understand what the subject of the chapter had to do with the idea of craziness in love. This is specially true with the chapter in spirituality and love. While Langley explains how religion has a similar effect on our brain as love, the connection seems weak. I felt similarly about the chapter that deals with Lynette and Arthur and the supernatural.

My last complaint is that sometimes Liz uses scientific terms that she deems perhaps too difficult for the reader so she constantly reminds us what the term means in a slightly condescending tone. I don't need that.
This product was provided at a discounted price in exchange for an unbiased review. This review is in compliance with the FTC guidelines.
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Comments
  • eroticmutt
    eroticmutt  
    This sounds like a very very interesting book. Thanks for the review!
  • teddybear328
    teddybear328  
    Thank for the review.
  • Bullfroggy and Rose
    Bullfroggy and Rose  
    thanks for the review
  • BG529
    BG529  
    great review
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