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Can't Think Straight: A Memoir of Mixed-Up Love Paperback – December 28, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Citadel Press; 1 edition (December 28, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0806533307
  • ISBN-13: 978-0806533308
  • Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 1 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (70 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,934,725 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Blakeley, a writer for Forbes, was happily living in New York City, engaged to Aaron, the man she’d been with for a decade, when he dropped a bomb on her one afternoon: he’s pretty sure he’s gay. Blakeley is blindsided by Aaron’s announcement and suddenly finds herself thrust back into the dating world at the age of 36. Demoralized and certain that she isn’t ready to jump into another relationship, Blakeley opts for no-strings-attached hook-ups with two men she meets in bars, a charming Indian lothario named Rahil and James, a younger man whose outward shyness masks his inner player. While Rahil pines for his ex-girlfriend, and James dates a series of younger foreign women, Blakeley tries to navigate a tricky minefield: sex without love. Blakeley’s lively memoir definitely limns the emotional upheaval that comes with the dissolution of a long-term relationship, and many will relate to her attempts to get back on her feet and find her way in the often emotionally taxing dating world. --Kristine Huntley

More About the Author


Editorial Reviews for "Can't Think Straight: A Memoir of Mixed-Up Love":

A former Forbes writer drolly details the emotional fallout after her fiancé admitted he was gay.

Not wanting to deceive her any longer, 36-year-old Aaron sat Blakeley down and tearfully admitted he'd been questioning his sexuality for the past two years. Initially amused but eventually shell-shocked, the author shifted into reconnaissance mode, wracking her frenzied brain to recall any signs of Aaron's homosexuality that she may have missed. Blakeley grasped the brunt of her ex's emotional and physical duplicity when she found anonymous personal-ad correspondence and gay-porn videos on his personal computer, a discovery which plunged her into "an eerie twilight world populated by those whom life had kicked in the teeth." An attractive, newly single, 36-year-old woman in Manhattan, Blakeley was prone to crying on the shoulder of her gay friend Tyler and to fits of anger, insecurity and frustration. In attempts to recalibrate herself to single life, she hit the clubs, telling herself to enjoy and not overthink innocent, intermittent dalliances with guys like sensual, soft-voiced Rahil, sexy Pakistani Adi and a few ill-suited men from her profile on Match.com--all while stoking an apprehensive friendship with Aaron ("I love him, and I resent him"). The author was smart to steer clear of emotional ties until she met selfish, 30-something banker James, and all bets (and clothes) were off. Throughout the 320 melodramatic days chronicled in this amiable memoir, Blakeley remains a charming, witty narrator, squandering no opportunity to inject hip, biting sarcasm and hilarious insight into her adventures. Still, a bittersweet aftertaste lingers, reminding readers of "the crippling awareness that you could never know anyone...[that] the person you know best could be the person you know least."

A touching, delicious, compulsively readable account of life after love. -Kirkus Reviews

Blakeley, a writer for Forbes, was happily living in New York City, engaged to Aaron, the man she'd been with for a decade, when he dropped a bomb on her one afternoon: he's pretty sure he's gay. Blakeley is blindsided by Aaron's announcement and suddenly finds herself thrust back into the dating world at the age of 36. Demoralized and certain that she isn't ready to jump into another relationship, Blakeley opts for no-strings-attached hook-ups with two men she meets in bars, a charming Indian lothario named Rahil and James, a younger man whose outward shyness masks his inner player. While Rahil pines for his ex-girlfriend, and James dates a series of younger foreign women, Blakeley tries to navigate a tricky minefield: sex without love. Blakeley's lively memoir definitely limns the emotional upheaval that comes with the dissolution of a long-term relationship, and many will relate to her attempts to get back on her feet and find her way in the often emotionally taxing dating world. - Booklist

Customer Reviews

One thing I can say about us as a whole is that closeted gays certainly pick some awesome, smart, strong, non-judgmental people.
MomofFour
I enjoyed Kiri's writing style very much, which was solid, entertaining, fast-paced and pulling no punches in calling it like she saw it.
T2
You will truly understand that there are no guarantees in any relationship,but love is constant & powerful.....true love is forgiving.
paula Casano

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Margaret A. Macfarlane on January 20, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was so excited to get my hands on this book! A few years ago, I went through something very similar and had yet to find someone else to talk to about the horror of finding out your boyfriend prefers men. I mean, of course there were the therapists, but they don't count. Certainly they had never had a gay boyfriend. Then there were my friends, who I complained to, but they just listened and provided a shoulder. When Blakeley's book came in the mail I was giddy! I finished it up in a day and a half. The honesty, pain, insight, drama and feeling put into this memoir is truly inspiring.

You have to be aware: she can be a bit vulgar. Of course she writes about meaningless sex and the need to feel desired. Who wouldn't? The man she thought to be her soulmate prefers another sex entirely and has been cheating on her for years. This book is about coming to the realization that the dating scene is one huge, stressful place. If you're in a relationship, it will make you cherish your man (after you're done scrutinizing whether or not he's a closet gay). If you're single, it will open your eyes to the terrors that are out there in the male dating pool. If you want an honest account of the battle a young woman goes through after finding out her boyfriend is gay: read this book. Hell, I think every woman could take something from this.

Thanks for putting yourself on the line and writing this Ms. Blakeley. I know that as a single woman in NYC you are probably catching a bit of flack for your honesty and experiences but I can assure you that through writing this you did many women a huge favor. I can finally sleep knowing that I'm not the only woman out there who has been through this and THAT means the WORLD to me.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Country Music Gal on July 28, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I ordered this book as soon as I heard about it through the media. What Ms. Blakeley shows in her book is that there is no one-size-fits-all way to navigate through learning that your opposite gender spouse or significant other has a same-sex orientation. In her case, she felt the need to prove to herself that she was sexually appealing, to assure herself that it wasn't because of her that this happened. I could totally relate to her thought process, especially when she goes to see a friend and can't remember how to get there. Her friend tells her to turn left off the subway; Kiri's response is "which way is left?". Exactly. This is what learning something of this magnitude does to your brain. It throws your whole life and belief system off kilter. I'm sorry she had to live through one of these relationships, but I'm sure glad she had the courage to tell her story. Well done, Ms. Blakeley.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Macie on July 19, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Kiri, I can't thank you enough for putting something that can be so passionate, private and "self-esteem stealing" into pages filled with constant laughter! Your book was my beach book this year. I could not put it down except for the time I would walk into the water to cool down and look back at the shore to see either my brother or sister laughing hysterically. Someone grabbed the book everytime it was put down. We fought over the book ...lol.

I too was involved with a gay man. I was actually married for 14 years. I felt trapped in a loveless marriage but stayed "for the sake of my children" until the day I simply couldn't play anymore. I felt as though my inner being was being stolen from me.

I ordered the book one morning after seeing your interview on The TODAY show. You caught my attention when they introduced you and I had to stay and hear your story. I am so thankful that I did. I loved the humor you share and the way you dealt with your fiance of 10 years revealing that he is gay.

I don't think there is any way one could truly understand this predicament and the emotions you feel when faced with this issue. It suddenly seems that everything and life as you know it is nothing but a lie!

Loved, loved, loved the part of the book where you made mention of "till dick do us part". I have never laughed so hard in my life! This is only one of the hysterical lines you wrote. You are an awesome woman and I hope to read many books written by you in the future. I know you will be a huge hit with this book and anything you publish in the future.

My sister just returned the book to me and I'm going to pass it on to a co-worker who was also married to a gay man!
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By letters2mary on May 31, 2011
Format: Paperback
One wonders whether the writer will cringe in ten years at the amount of sexual detail disclosed. One also wonders why the writer did not seem to gain any insight into herself or her partners notwithstanding what appeared to be an earnest booze-fueled body bender. The jolt of discovering that one's life partner is homosexual does not account for all these subsequent lapses in judgment. If sex can be made tedious, this book can accomplish that. Not as promising a memoir as one might hope.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By sweetcaroline713 on March 21, 2011
Format: Paperback
This book was a meandering tale of one woman's sexual escapades in New York following a breakup with her gay fiance. What could have been an interesting, even educational tale of lessons learned ends up reading like some long, winding flow chart of sexual conquests. I got nothing out of this book and sincerely wished I hadn't wasted my time reading it.
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