Dating Advice

The Best Pick Up Artist Books (the only 2 you need)

I came across the world of pickup artistry by chance. I had just gotten over a bad breakup and during an online search I came across an interesting book that promised to double your dating.

Since I wasn’t even dating at that point, I decided to give it a read in order to re-learn the art of picking up women.

I soon discovered that this was no ordinary book. Instead, it was written by a real pickup artist (aka PUA) and contained a treasure trove of pickup techniques for men like me.

In this article, I’m going to share the only two pickup books you need to read to nail this game, and an additional one that will help you take your PUA skills to online dating.

I’ll also share with you the best pickup techniques and the best pickup artists out there in case you want to do your own research

Let’s start with the books

The two pickup artist books you must read and the best dating book for guys

The additional book I wan to recommend is Online Dating Secrets. This is one of my own books and the reason I believe it will change your online dating game is because it’s based on everything I learned from my research into pickup artists, as well as neurolinguistic programming (I’m a certified NLP practitioner) and includes over a dozen real interactions with women online, showing how to use the techniques I discuss in detail. In fact, I analyse every interaction line by line.

You can pick up this book by searching Amazon for Online Dating Secrets J. Riley.

Ok, let’s get back to the books teaching how to be a pickup artist, but let me mention the obvious first:

not all pickup artists write books.

For this reason, I’ll list the best pickup artists by name after this section so you can look into each separate one yourself if you wish.

Ok, the books:

The first book is the one I mentioned at the start of this article. It’s called Double Your Dating and it’s by a PUA named David D’angelo (sometimes spelt David de Angelo).

This book is well worth a read. It’s the book that got me started researching pickup artists in the first place.

I’ll talk more in depth about this book and about David D in a moment.

The second book you must read if you’re serious about becoming a PUA in your own right, is Neil Strauss’s The Game. Neil Strauss is traditionally published writer so you’ll find his book almost anywhere.

In his book The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists, he describes his experiences in the seduction community in an effort to become a “pick-up artist.”
Source: Wikipedia

I’ll talk more in depth about this book and about Neil Strauss in after I cover David.

David D’angelo and his book

David D’angelo is actually a pen name. His real name is Eben Pagan and he has built a multimillion online publishing empire covering everything from dating for men to high level business and productivity.

David is a machine when it comes to understanding a subject at a very deep level and breaking it down into easy-to-understand concepts.

His story is that he cracked how to get good at picking up and dating women out of need. It’s the proverbial scratching your own itch. He worked at it and interviewed dozens of men who were naturals when it came to attracting women and went on to create multiple books and video courses to help men in this area.

Now, while ‘David’ is not a traditionally published author, his stuff is genuinely good – even life changing – and the fact that he’s amassed such a fortune is testament to this fact.

According to Wealthy Genius, Eben Pagan’s net worth currently stands at $20m.

David D’s books can be found online – just search for his name and the words double your dating.

Neil Strauss and his book

Neil Strauss is no stranger to writing. He is in fact a bestselling author of several books.

His story is that he became intrigued by the pickup artist community and decided to join to see if an average nice guy could actually learn some pickup tricks to seduce beautiful women.

This, he did. He often talks about how he managed to get Brittney Spears to cough up her personal mobile number. Not bad.

The book is very well written (and edited) as you’d expect, and it provides a fascinating look from the inside out into the seduction community, as they’re sometimes referred to.

As I mentioned earlier, you can pick up his book, The Game, from almost anywhere, including Amazon.

Who are the best pickup artists?

The masters of seduction are many, but, when I was deep in my research, few hogged the limelight or were as memorable as David DeAngelo – the so-called daddy of PUAs) and Mystery the pickup artist.

Mystery (real name Erik von Markovik) is a Canadian pickup artist. He is a tall, gaunt individual who wears goggles around his head. His dress sense was designed to shock and single him out to any onlooker, and the rest he did with his mouth, for Mystery is a master of seduction.

In case you’re wondering about his name, his online handle on dating websites was Man of Mystery – a great handle that’s intended to arouse curiosity in women looking for love online.

Like Eben, Erik has monetised his skills and sells various courses on his website.

The things that make a good pickup artist

If you want success with women then it’s worth taking a peek at the world of pickup artistry and familiarising yourself with its concepts, which are embedded in behavioural psychology, NLP and social dynamics.

A pickup artist by definition is a man (in this case) who can easily ‘turn on the charm’ and appeal to lots of women across a wide spectrum. He is most notable to others for his confidence with women and social skills, and for the apparent ease with which he can get women into bed.

The key premise of pickup artistry is the knowledge and ability to understand the underlying courtship ‘language’ that often takes place between men and women and to be able to engage women at this level.

Put another way, it’s like flirting on steroids.

Is this stuff applicable to real life?

This is an interesting question, and one that I began asking myself when I was deep into the world of PUAs.

I recall being in a nightclub in Manchester on a night out organised by a local group of PUAs. My friend had dragged me along as he also had an interest in this subject and had become a member of this community.

I watched this PUAs, the novices watching the veteran’s approach beautiful girls one after the other. After a while of watching, I remember thinking it was machine-like. Hit on an attractive girl, move on to the next cute girl and repeat.

My friend asked me to be his wing man. A wing man is pickup artist speak for somebody who moves in with you when the girl you want to hit on is accompanied by a friend. The wing man’s job is to support you and distract the friend so you can get to work on the primary target.

I went along, somewhat reluctant and feeling awkward, and I watched my friend dish out one cheesy pick-up line after another.

The girl he was chatting to looked at him and asked him if this was a routine of some sort, because she’d been asked the same things half a dozen times that night.

And therein I saw the real problem. It’s easy to become too wrapped up in the actual lines and strategies and forget the bigger objective, which is to develop conversation skills and well as courtship skills.

My friend, it turns out, wasn’t quite ready to enter the pick up artist’s hall of fame.

Are pickup artists even real?

Being a pickup artist seems like a concept removed from reality. When you explain PUAs to a non PUA, they often ask if pick up artists are real. Well, they are.

Likewise, The Game by Neil Strauss is a real story. Neil also created a video which he sold as training where he implemented the pickup techniques discussed in The Game and showed a bunch of non PUAs how to do it themselves.

The fact is that the art of seduction is as real as anything else. Some men have more game than others and get more girls as a result. The point of PUAs is that that ‘game’ is a set of skills that can be learned by men who don’t have that natural ability to connect with women at that level.

So what are the original best pickup artists doing today – are they still using those techniques?

I often wondered whether PUAs would stand the test of time. I watched them thrive at their game and wondered whether times would change and how they would fare later in life.

Well, I see that Mystery is still cashing in on his skills, as is Eben Pagan. The Game is still on sale and, if I took the time to search around for more, I would find a lot more.

That said, this is no surprise. Those videos and eBooks are digital products – they can be sold in perpetuity. So, what about their lives?

Well, Eben is a happily married man, as is Neil. Eben has been focused on business training for many years now, and Neil appears not to be doing any PUA stuff according to an article whose headline states that Neil Strauss no longer believes in the pickup game. Source: GZ

I’m not sure what Mystery is up to. That, is a mystery.

But even back when I was researching this stuff, I caught glimpses of the bigger picture, which alluded to learning these pickup skills is a bridge to becoming a social master who can create more opportunities for himself than other men.

For example, in his book, Neil talks about a particular man who was not a ‘trained’ PUA but had an uncanny ability to connect with women instantly. Neil stated that this guy was a natural PUA and my interpretation of his writing was that this is what the end game is – to be natural, rather than act like an automaton.

I also recall watching a video of a PUA conference which ended with David DeAngelo’s speech. He ended things by saying that at the end of the day, your best strategy was to be yourself.

That said, you need the skills and techniques to get the experience to then shape the way in which you want to be. These former PUAs are not saying learning the game is wrong (they wouldn’t be selling their trainings and books otherwise). Rather, they are saying that once you learn the skills, it is up to you to integrate them into your own character going forward in life.


Learning the art of the pickup is a worthwhile thing for any man who wants to be able to engage and attract women at a deeper level. The fact is that attraction is a learned skill – it’s not about being handsome.

The best books out there to help you become a pickup artist include The Game by Neil Strauss and David DeAngelo’s Double Your Dating.

If you want to learn how to pickup women online, you’d do well to read Online Dating Secrets (written by myself) as this book integrates many of the techniques I learned when I researched pick up artists, but applied online. It also encompasses NLP techniques (I’m a certified NLP practitioner) explains the concept of social value and how to build it and includes many real interactions analysed step by step.