Excerpt: Steve Harvey's 'Straight Talk, No Chaser'

Read an excerpt of the legendary entertainer's new book for women.

ByABC News via via logo
April 12, 2009, 5:43 PM

Dec. 7, 2010 — -- With a decades-long career in television, including his own show, Steve Harvey has conquered the media world. But during his rocket-like shot to the top, Harvey had his share of relationships and gained a lot of experience with women.

Now he's turning this experience into sage advice for the fairer sex. In his newest book, "Straight Talk, No Chaser" he teaches women how to "find, keep and understand a man."

Check out an excerpt of the book below, then head to the "GMA" Library for other great reads.

I can hear her heels clicking on the cement, coming faster and faster, louder and louder. She was working her way up three levels of the circular parking lot—she's skipped the elevators altogether and is running in the middle of the road trying to run me down before I make it to my car or to stop me if I start to drive away. Just as I am about to duck into the backseat, she catches me: "Steve Harvey! Steve Harvey! I . . . got . . . the . . . ring," she says, waving her left hand in my face while trying to catch her breath from the impromptu workout. She swallows hard, takes another breath, and then starts in again.

"You said to make marriage a requirement and tell him if he wanted to continue our relationship he needed to give me a ring. I did what you said to do and I got it, Steve Harvey. I got my ring!"

I hear stories like hers practically every day: some women send me letters, telling me they wish they'd had my first book, Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man, on their bookshelves when they were wasting time with a good-for-nothing guy; some women e-mail me stories about how they would have better recognized the guy worth holding on to if they had known in advance what motivates men, which I shared in that book; still others call into The Steve Harvey Morning Show or show up to my book signings, relationship panels, and television appearances, or send questions to my online dating site, thanking me for the insight and vowing to keep my advice in mind as they look for, get into, and forge relationships with the opposite sex. With more than two million books sold worldwide and translated into a myriad of languages in over thirty different countries, I'm proud to know that which I spoke about so passionately in Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man was digested, considered, discussed, and ultimately applauded all around the world. I'm also grateful for the doors it opened for me. I have been labeled a relationship expert on a national morning show and in one of the most well-read and respected women's magazines in the world (though I will maintain that I am merely an expert on the mind-set of men in terms of how we think and why we do what we do).

I'll be honest. I did not see this coming. When I set out to write my first book, I did it only intending to share with women who send in questions to the "Strawberry Letter" segment of my radio program and show up to my comedy shows nodding in agreement about my observations on love and relationships, a no-holds-barred guide to understanding what men think about love, sex, dating, and marriage. My sole hope was that it would help women get beyond the myths, stereotypes, and general chatter that puts a stranglehold on the way they conduct themselves in relationships with us; my intention was to inform them about who we really are and what it takes to win in love with us when playing the "dating game."

My intentions were pure: I care deeply about these things because I am a husband, a son, a radio personality who speaks to millions of women daily via my radio show, and, most important of all, the father of four girls—beautiful young women who deserve good men who will love them, respect them, and treat them the way they want to be loved, respected, and treated.

What I found, though, was that Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man simply wasn't enough. As I hosted relationship seminars across the country, I discovered that no matter how thoroughly I thought I'd explained what motivates men, women still had innumerable questions about why we men act and react the way we do in various romantic situations. If I told a group of women that men are driven solely by what they do for a living, how much they make, and who they are, women wanted to know why stability is more important to men than falling in love. If I said men show their love by providing for, professing to, and protecting their significant other, my audience wanted to know why men can't love the way women love—by leading with their hearts. For every question I answered in the chapter, "Quick Answers to the Questions You've Always Wanted to Ask"—from "What do men find sexy?" and "Do you mind if your woman doesn't work?" to "Are men okay with their women having male friends?" and "Is getting on his mom's side important? "—there were fifty more topics I hadn't addressed.

There was also quite a bit of dissension. Some questioned why I counseled women to hold off sleeping with a man for at least 90 days while she investigated his intentions. Some argued that if they dared institute standards and requirements and tell men up front they were looking for serious relationships, they would run off guys who might be interested in them; others questioned whether I, a twice-divorced comedian, am qualified to give advice to women on how to have a long-term successful relationship.

All of these questions, observations, reservations, and demands for clarification and more answers reminded me that women are absolutely the most inquisitive creatures God has created; and no matter how many ways I explain something to my wife, my daughters, my female friends and colleagues, and especially my Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man readers, women are simply going to want to hear the answers more ways than my first book had to offer, and no matter how often I or any other man says they should maybe think and act a little differently in their dealings with men, they're hesitant.

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