NEXT! The Search for My Last First Date by Robert James
We’ve all had good dates. And we’ve all had really, really awful dates. But what makes a good date good, or a bad date bad? Robert James was in his mid-forties when he and his wife got their divorce. He hadn’t been on a date with a woman in over twenty years, so when it was time to start meeting potential mates again, he turned to his co-workers for advice. Together, they created an online dating profile for Robert that serves as the jumping-off point for his autobiographical collection of dating stories called “NEXT! The Search for My Last First Date.” Robert takes his readers through just a handful of the dates he went on with women he met on dating websites, including a woman who asked him to help pay off her personal debts from her son’s divorce, a church singer who offered a very different sort of “service” in a public parking lot, and another woman who looked up Robert’s address online before paying him a rather unexpected visit one morning. In the course of his book, Robert ultimately arrives at a clearer state of self-awareness, and readers will be sure to identify with the many awkward, hilarious, and just plain weird tales of twenty-first century dating collected here in “NEXT.”
Whether you’re single, married, or somewhere in between, Robert James’ “NEXT!” is an incredibly sincere account of one man’s search for his happily ever after. Robert’s a normal guy – works in business, went to college, has three kids, goes to church – and a person can’t help but wonder when modern dating got so complicated. The stories found in this collection tend to follow a certain pattern: Robert’s dates fizzled as a result of either poor chemistry or poor timing. There’s plenty of both here, but the relationships that failed due to bad timing are particularly heartbreaking. They prove that even after all our own efforts to find true love, other factors are at play here, whether it’s fate or life’s simple randomness or something else entirely. Ultimately, “NEXT!” is an honest, optimistic, and humorous portrayal of dating in the modern world that proves that even though we all hate dating, the payoff is definitely worth it.
“NEXT! The Search for My Last First Date” is set to be published early next year.