The Reason I Endorsed “The Dating Manifesto”

Let me share a dirty little secret from the publishing world: There are some people who write endorsements for books without reading them.  I am not one of those people.

Recently, I was asked to endorse the book The Dating Manifesto: A Drama-free Plan for Pursuing Marriage with Purpose, written by Lisa Anderson.  She has never written a book before, so I didn’t know what to expect – plus, I wasn’t sure how much of a page-turner a book on dating would be since I’m past that phase of life.

No doubt, Lisa’s got the expertise.  In her role as director of young adults for Focus on the Family, she is regularly immersed in the complicated work of helping young adults wade through the morass of confusion that accompanies dating (note that I write on a contractual basis for Focus).  But expertise doesn’t always translate into good, helpful, or interesting writing – fortunately though, in Lisa’s case, it does.

And that’s why my endorsement is in the front of her book: because her book is that good.  Because I read it while I was riding public transportation and repeatedly embarrassed myself by laughing out loud at her painfully awkward stories.  Because I got choked up as I read her heart-wrenching description of the fears many single people face.  Because, as a married man in a church with a lot of single folks, she helped me realize that some of my dating advice needs a tune-up.  Because it’s so good I’ve already bought multiple copies and given it to some of my single friends.

If there’s any downside to the book, it’s probably for Lisa – she walks away with a fair amount of self-inflicted egg on her face, but I admire her for it.  It takes guts to tell some of the stories she shares about her various dating mishaps.  I would also add that it’s written from a Christian perspective, so if you’re looking for a guide on getting easy sex while dating, this is definitely not your book (many folks will be relieved to hear that The Dating Manifesto presents a different perspective than most dating books anyway).

If you’re interested in hearing more about the book, check out this week’s episode of The Boundless Show, the popular radio program and podcast Lisa hosts.  Recently, she let me take over the reins for a few minutes to interview her, and if you want to hear our conversation, click here, and scroll down to “Lisa Anderson’s Dating 180.”  She speaks in the same blunt, no-nonsense voice with which she writes; so the interview will be a nice preview of her book, which I wholeheartedly encourage you to buy for yourself or a friend who can use it.

The Dating Manifesto: A Drama-free Plan for Pursuing Marriage with Purpose is available at bookstores and online.  If you’d like an email with a weekly recap of what I’ve written, click here.  You can also keep up with my latest articles (and more) on Facebook or Twitter.


  1. Joshua,
    Thanks for this review! Her book sounds great and I’m going to buy and read it.
    Thanks also for your articles. I have just recently discovered your site via Boundless, and greatly appreciated your words.
    Also, one of my acquaintances just wrote a related book, called “Courtship in Crisis”. I have read it, and really appreciated it. I think you might find it interesting too. I would be willing to purchase and mail you a free copy, if you think you might have the time and inclination to write a review of it (or actually, even if you decide not to write a review).
    Either way, may God bless you and your ministries.


    1. Thanks Tim. I’m so busy these days, there’s no way I have time to read an additional book. I do appreciate the offer though. Enjoy Lisa’s book!


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