Cover Image: Eight Dates

Eight Dates

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

Thank you for the opportunity to read this book. Unfortunately, I was unable to get into it. Since I didn't finish it, I will not be leaving a rating on Goodreads, so as not to skew it's rating. Best of luck!
Was this review helpful?
This book was incredibly easy to read. There were so many good questions in this book and lots of practicality for the reader. The authors have done an incredible amount of research. Such a hope-filled optimistic book. My biggest thing about this book I didn't like is that they didn't talk enough about the problems and conflicts of marriage. I would suggest this book to my married friends.
Was this review helpful?
This book is a self-help book for people who are in love, married, fianceed, or just long term lovers.  The authors remind us that love always has it's ups and downs and that how you react to the downs determines if your love will survive.  They offer dates and exercises to help you think through these times.  I think it will be helpful for anyone wishing to strengthen their love lives.  The dates can be done either in your house or in other areas such as nature as one is a picnic.  One date is to see if trust is an issue in your marriage.  Reading it made me remember a marriage encounter I went to after about 5 years of marriage and a tough period of life.  I would recommend this book.
Was this review helpful?
A good read reiterating what is needed in healthy relationships. I liked the way each chapter is it's own thing, you can read this at your leisure even if you are reading something else at the same time.
Was this review helpful?
Thanks to NetGalley for providing me with an advanced copy of this book for my honest opinion. 

Eight Dates gives couples opportunities to get acquainted, or reacquainted with each other. As a person in year 9 of second marriage, it was a good reminder about working on the relationship to keep it growing. I think it can also serve as a good foundation for new couples too.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you Workman Publishing and. Netgalley for an ARC of this book in return of my honest review.

This relationship to anyone, those in long term relationships, Jewish relationships and even those who hope to be in a loving relationship someday soon.  The book is divided in eight chapters, each one called a date.  The date is relevant to a particular theme within relationships, eg  trust, conflict, sex, money, spirituality.  Each date includes questions and exercises to ask one another.

The book is easy to read, very informative and an important reminder to cherish our partners and relationships at all stages, by celebrating our similarities and differences.
Was this review helpful?
Having been happily married for nearly 30 years, I wondered how this book would do for what I've experienced working - for the most part it's RIGHT ON! Unlike everyone else, I had a harder time with the actual eight date application suggestions, while the lengthy introduction to the effective principles was an accurate intro to the subject! Well done.
Was this review helpful?
This book shows couples how to get curious about each other and have intimate conversations that strengthen their relationship. It is appropriate for couples at any stage of relationship.

The book was easy to read with a nice mix of research-backed discussion (citations provided in the endnotes), personal stories and case studies, exercises, and suggestions for how to conduct each of the eight dates. I especially appreciated all of the examples from the authors’ own relationships. I also liked the “Speed Dating” section of each chapter summarizing the important points—that will be helpful for later review. The URL mentioned in the ARC I reviewed did not lead to the correct website, but I found the referenced worksheets available to download (with no signup required) on the publisher’s website at

I recommend this book for anyone interested in improving their romantic relationships, although it seems best suited for those in a committed, monogamous relationship. Note that both members of a couple need to read the book for the dates to work as designed.

I was provided an unproofed ARC through NetGalley that I volunteered to review. Because I have not seen the final published version, I cannot comment on the final editing and formatting, but the ARC appeared to be well edited and neatly formatted.
Was this review helpful?
Disclaimer: I received a free electronic ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Drawing on his own experience of 40+ years of marriage and decades of research, including other couples married or just cohabiting, gay or straight, together long term or short term, Gottman's newest book focuses on eight crucial areas that can make or break a relationship. How couples communicate about these areas and resolve issues both before and after they arise is the main message of the book. Each chapter has a section on the topic itself with real-life couples from all backgrounds sharing their stories. Each section also includes suggestions for the "date" itself, to set the stage for good conversation and communication - where to have it, when to have it, what to do, and lots of open-ended questions to discuss. There are even questionnaires you can fill out before going on the date so you can give some real thought to your answers before the discussion. The eight date topics are: trust, conflict, sex, money, family, adventure, spirituality, and dreams.

I highly recommend this book to all couples, regardless of their status/situation. I believe every relationship can be improved and this book offers practical, doable suggestions to get couples communicating. This is not a panacea to cure all ills in marriage! But, it has useful and realistic steps anyone can take to help resolve and/or minimize conflict and grow closer to their partner.
Was this review helpful?
While not a lot of new advice this book is well organized. Couples looking for advice can easily get many suggestions and tips to try.
Was this review helpful?
Oh shoot. I didn’t make it through this book before my review copy expired. Is there a way to get a copy with a few more days on it so I can review it? My apologies for waiting so long!
Was this review helpful?
Eight Dates: Essential Conversations for a Lifetime of Love is a new book by marriage experts John and Julie Gottman.  The book aims to encourage couples to "date" each other in order to strengthen their marriages.  As the title suggests, Gottman and Gottman provide resources for eight dates which primarily focus on essential conversations to have with each other. . Each chapter provides background information on the topic including why it is an essential conversation and why the topic is important for a long, lasting marriage. At the end of the chapter a list of questions is provided along with suggestions for a date. 

This is a book where ideally each spouse has a copy or has a copy they can easily share.  For this reason, the hardbound copy would be a better purchase. While useful for couples of all ages, couples still in the earlier years of their relationship will benefit the most from this resource. Marriage therapists and pre-marital counselors will wish to add this resource to their arsenal of tools as well.
Was this review helpful?
John Gottman is basically a love guru. He has studied thousands of relationships, and after several decades of clinical observation and study, he can predict with 97% accuracy if a couple will stay together or divorce.

I read one of Gottman’s earlier books called The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work when my husband and I were having a rough time just after we were married. It absolutely changed the way I approached our relationship, and it helped us both better communicate so we could come together to work through our issues and move on.

I was expecting good things from Eight Dates, and boy did it deliver. The book is divided into eight sections, one for each date. The dates cover eight of the most meaningful, important, and, often, contentious topics that couples deal with: trust and commitment, conflict, sex, money, family, fun and adventure, growth and spirituality, and dreams. Before the dates are introduced, an intro gives characteristics of successful marriages, as well as advice on how to have an intimate conversation and how to listen.

There is SO MUCH interesting info in this book! I know not everyone is going to froth at the mouth over learning how couples interact with each other, but I seriously couldn’t get enough. It’s all so interesting to me, discovering what is “normal” and what actually creates a lasting connection, especially when it doesn’t necessarily match up with what I expected. Some of my favorite insights:

*** Successful marriages have 20 positive interactions for every 1 negative interaction.
*** Sixty-nine percent of conflicts in most marriages will never be solved. The trick is to fight about (or let go of) these issues effectively.
*** Eighty-percent of married couples have sex at least a few times a month. Of those, 32% have sex 2 to 3 times a week.
*** Studies have shown that dual-career couples with young children spend only 10% of their evenings together, with most of that time spent discussing errands. (In other words, they have to work extra hard to keep that romantic spark alive…)
*** The five most common subjects that couples fight about are money, sex, in-laws, alcohol or drug use, and parenting.
*** Arguments about the unpaid work in a relationship (chores and childcare) tend to cause the most conflict.
*** The eight most important elements of a successful marriage are fidelity, good sex, division of chores, adequate income, good housing, shared religious beliefs, shared interests, and children.
*** Stay at home parents do about $90,000 worth of work per year. (#preach)
*** An early indicator of the future success of a marriage happens during pregnancy and the birth of a child. If a husband (the study only involved heterosexual couples) is involved during pregnancy and birth, the marriage will be happier later on. A father tends to stay involved with the children through the years if his marriage has low conflict and there is continued sex.
*** Play is a vital component of a relationship. Couples who play together, stay together. This includes experiencing laughter, excitement, anxiety, and curiosity, both separately and together.
*** Conflict is how our relationships grow.
*** It’s important for couples to share their dreams with each other. Keeping your dreams from your partner leads to bitterness, resentment, loss of passion and desire, and distance.
*** Every person has a dream or life purpose, and it should never be sacrificed for the relationship. It’s possible for both people to achieve their dreams, just typically not at the same time.

Is that too much to share? I seriously could go on and on. I just find this stuff fascinating.

Practically speaking, this book is very user-friendly. It talks about each topic, summarizes the chapter, then lays out a date night plan complete with suggestions for how to prepare, where to go, problems to look out for, questions to ask, and an affirmation to say together at the end of the date. It’s intense but also very doable. My husband and I haven’t gone through each of these dates yet, but the ones we’ve done have been really interesting and made us feel more connected.

In short, I’d recommend this book to any couple looking to take their relationship to the next level. Five enthusiastic stars!
Was this review helpful?
I’m giving this book 4 stars because it is so well written and organized and because I think younger or new couples will benefit from it.  I have met many relationships books over the years and I honestly didn’t see anything new here  

Thanks to NetGalley, the author and publisher for an advanced reading copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
Was this review helpful?
This book had some good advice, if not very original. Would recommend for couples struggling with their connection, not necessarily for couples that want new tips and tricks.
Was this review helpful?
A lot of recycled advice, but good advice. For many strong relationships there is nothing novel  or new about this title, but it would be of interest to anyone questioning their connection.
Was this review helpful?
EIGHT DATES is another fantastic book on relationships from John & Julie Gottman. In it, they outline eight important dates every couple should explore to strengthen their relationship, learn more about each other, and spend time together. It's so easy to get stuck in a rut with your relationship when you're busy dealing with everything else in your life. This book asks you to tune back into your relationship and partner. The dates cover topics such as trust and commitment, addressing conflict, sex and intimacy, work and money, family, fun and adventure, growth and spirituality, and dreams.

They offer conversation starters, open-ended questions, ways to prepare, location recommendations, troubleshooting and affirmations for each date, as well as a summary. I loved the affirmations at the end of each chapter and appreciated reading about different couples and how they approached these topics. This book is appropriate for a couple at any stage in their relationship. The emphasis throughout the book is on making time together a priority, communicating, and growing as a couple. 

I received an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
3.5 stars 

Review copy provided courtesy of NetGalley. Review is unbiased and reflects my personal opinion. 

The premise of this relationship self-help book is that the eight conversations held within are necessary ones you and your partner should have in order to have a happy lifelong relationship. The first part of the book introduces you to the authors, the research that went into creating the exercises outlined in each chapter and different strategies for having what can be difficult conversations. The following eight chapters each cover a different date or conversation prefaced by a story about a couple who went on the date and what they learned. The end of the book surmises the findings and offers bonus exercises. 

While the book is supposedly geared towards all couples lets be clear that it is more accurately geared towards those who are considering making a lifetime commitment to one another or those who have with the past few years. While couples who fall outside of that category may also find it interesting, those who aren't at that point yet in their relationships will be at a loss for what to do with some of the exercises and those that are much further in may find it better to pick and chose which "dates" best meet their current needs. 

The book also purports to be for all couples regardless of gender. Here I am a little torn. The exercises themselves work fairly hard to be gender neutral, and at least appear as though they would work for couples of all gender. However of the majority of the examples given at the beginning of each chapter involve heteronormative  couples, along with a handful of same sex couples. This may be due to lack of available research as the authors note but it leaves the book very much feeling like it is geared more towards heteronormative couples. 

They do embrace a wide range of definitions for family and spirituality along with other topics. I was very happy to see in the family section to see that not having kids was seen as a valid life option and one to be upfront about. Also in there section on spirituality, they do not use religion and spirituality interchangeably but allow for a personal definition of spirituality to be developed.  

Overall I think for couples that are looking to spend a lifetime together and need a little help getting started with difficult conversations regarding finances, family and more these "dates" or conversation exercises could be a great way to get started.
Was this review helpful?
I wish I had this book years ago when I got married, or even when our relationship started. Even though we've been together for 20 years I'm not sure we've had all these conversations and although some of them seem daunting I can see how they all contribute to a stronger relationship. I will definitely look for this as a physical book once it is available.

I recieved a free electronic copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
This is the ultimate book for every couple married or not. A lot of us underestimate the significance and effectiveness of going on dates. Whether its to the movies, walks in the park or beach, or even a fancy dinner, the time you share with your significant other is very special and in one way shape or form we all take it for granted. Eight Dates provided great ideas and examples for dates to have for a better connection physically and mentally. This book is essential for all couples.

Thank you Netgalley and Workman Publishing Company for the ARC in exchange for an honest review. We will definitely consider this title for our Non-Fiction collection at the library. That is why we give this book 5 stars!
Was this review helpful?