Verdict: A nontraditional self-help book on how to develop and maintain intimacy in love relationships, friendships and interactions with family.
Authors Paul N. Weinberg and Dr. Susan A. Dyer’s “how to” on building healthy relationships begins with an interesting introduction. On barely more than a page, the authors discuss their motivations for writing the book and what they hope their readers can gain from it.
At first sight one would think, as is the case with many self-help books, that there would be endless chapters of anecdotes portraying the past experiences of the authors. Instead, the opposite occurs. Other than a prologue of sorts, little information about the authors is provided. Each page presents brief paragraphs, sometimes not even that, offering advice on various issues that arise in relationships and impede intimacy. For each paragraph or chapter, there is a partnering quote by philosophers, psychologists and even religious figures, offering, sometimes, very intriguing advice.
The I Factor reads like a dictionary. Instead of seeking to define words, the book seeks to define intimacy and all of its dimensions. Because readers aren’t bombarded with stories from the authors’ personal lives, it allows them to utilize the insight—at times both practical and entertaining—as he or she sees fit.
The book also features fairly humorous comic-like strips, depicting communication discrepancies between men and women. Readers may be tempted to approach the book with some level of skepticism, primarily because the authors were once married (they are now divorced). However, the book was written years after their split and the two have managed to continue a fulfilling friendship, even though they’ve both started new lives with different partners. Their writing, therefore, is meant to be a conveyance of lessons gleaned from the failure of their marriage and, ultimately, the development of a life-long platonic relationship.
Reviewed by Rebecca Nichloson for IndieReader