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'Bachelor Chronicles' offers a harsh look into the minds of men

Shelf Life: Rachael Mason

Six weeks ago, if you'd asked me if I wanted to know what guys were really thinking, I definitely would have said yes. That was before I started reading "The Bachelor Diaries: A Dating Memoir" by Ron Geraci (Kensington, $14).

The book is a window into the author's mind and for the most part, I wish I'd never looked into it. I thought I could handle a guy's no-holds-barred honesty. I was completely, totally and absolutely wrong.

I'm sure Geraci isn't a bad guy at heart - at least I hope so - but in this book, he doesn't portray himself in the most flattering light. His behavior in the first few chapters made me cringe. His stories of online dating weren't much nicer. There were some funny moments, but the repulsive stuff outweighed the laughs.

In chapter eight, his writing focuses on insulting the single people who gather at events where he's paid to act as a host. I'm sure at least some of his observations are accurate, but as a person who has been chronically single for quite a while, I took most of his comments pretty personally, even though I've never been to a singles event.

I do admire Geraci's willingness to reveal even the most intimate details of his dating life. I had no idea that guys could suffer from the same crippling bouts of insecurity that often strike me.

Still, this knowledge wasn't enough to turn Geraci into a sympathetic character. In fact, I couldn't keep reading about him. After I read about half of the book, I had to put it down for a while. Geraci's candid thoughts just made me feel somewhat depressed about all men and about relationships in general.

I'm not sure I'll give Geraci's book a second chance. And if the author was rating me according to the criteria he uses to determine if someone is datable, I'm pretty sure he wouldn't give me a second glance. In this case, I think I'd be better off that way.

Of course, if I did want a guy's attention, I could just apply "The Blonde Theory" (5 Spot, $13.99). In this chick-lit novel by Kristen Harmel, a successful lawyer named Harper rethinks her dating approach.

Harper stops letting men know how smart she is and instead pretends to be an oblivious blonde. The men she meets seem to love this. They really respond to her dumbed-down persona. Her friends encourage this experiment, but it didn't really seem like they have Harper's best interests in mind.

I did manage to finish "The Blonde Theory," but I liked it a lot less than Harmel's "How to Date a Movie Star" (5 Spot, $12.95), which was published last year.

While reading "The Blonde Therapy," I didn't hate Harper, but I wasn't really rooting for her either. I just wish she hadn't felt the need to play dumb.

Even in the world of chick lit, there's really nothing wrong with being single. Especially if that means you're not dating a jerk who only cares about appearances. Don't men know that you can't judge a book by its cover?

If there's a book you think I really ought to read, please e-mail rachael.mason@gwinnettdailypost.com.