Book Review: This Is Your Brain in Love

Dr. Henslin’s first book, This Is Your Brain on Joy, presented a good introduction to the physiology of some common biochemical disorders of the brain and steps to diagnose and treat them.  I was expecting this new book to be a helpful exploration of the physiology and biochemistry of love.

However, this book really isn’t much about the biochemistry of love at all, but is instead an uneven and disappointing mashup of various topics, some helpful, some confusing. There is a short first chapter which serves as a warm introduction to the concept of romantic love and its biochemistry.  Next is a chapter on sexuality and spirituality, which was a nice read but has really no connection to the rest of the book.

Suddenly, he launches into the main part of the book– talking about the five “love styles” which are trumpeted on the book’s cover but are really just a thinly retooled rehash of his first book— describing five basic types of brain pathology.  I was frankly confused— “wait, this is just talking about pathology, this isn’t about love at all”  ”what if my spouse and I don’t have any biochemical pathology, do I just skip the next 130 pages?” “where does personality style end and pathology begin?” “Is he implying that most people have deficient biochemistry that needs treating?”

He ends the book with another unrelated chapter titled “The Secret to Lasting Love” (short version: be kind, patient, honest, & forgiving), and then appendixes on brain-healthy eating, sexual addiction, brain scans, and hormone therapy for women.

Overall, the book has some helpful new information, but fell far short of my expectations.  Read his first book instead.

1 comment to Book Review: This Is Your Brain in Love

  • Dear Dr. Hollandsworth,
    Thank you for the thoughtful review of the ” Brain on Love ” book. Wished I had sent it to you in manuscript form to look at…you have some helpful suggestions. I do agree that the spirituality and sexuality theme needed to be better integrated throughout the book. I am happy that the idea of spirituality and sexuality is communicated…hopefully that will inspire others to go deeper with it.

    Again thanks for your thoughtful comments about ” This is Your Brain in Love,”

    With Respect,

    Dr. Earl R Henslin

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