Need a last-minute Christmas gift? If friends or family are married, or engaged, No, I Can’t Make Your Wife Disappear may just fit the bill—even as a stocking stuffer!
I have read a lot of self-help marriage books, even before I was married. While I found some had the ingredients to help couples make changes and potentially transform, most were simply a laundry list of hoops to jump through, or too focused on doctrinaire tenets that could only be applied successfully to a particular segment of religious people.
No, I Can’t Make Your Wife Disappear is 176 pages of digestible nuggets of marital wisdom, offered straight, with no chaser, hoops, or legalistic bludgeons.
Author Danny Ray is not a marriage counselor, psychiatrist, or psychologist. He is a magician, and has been a successful businessman, entertainer, and motivational force for 17 years. With a background in communicative disorders and Divinity, in 2003, Ray left his youth pastor job to launch what he considers his ministry: to empower people to “run a better race” in life. According to his website, Ray does this through, “making people laugh, and blowing their minds with unique illusions.”
The principles that Ray uses to create successful and high-quality illusions, are the same principles a couple can use to create a successful and high-quality marriage. Ray and his wife Kimberly have been happily married for 25 years and raised three children together. So, they have some insight into how to ignite, revive, or refine the “magic” in a marriage.
As Ray says in his first principle, “Misdirection,”
“The Magic is created when we focus on the right thing, at the right time.”
Ray’s principles follow a well-worn self-help format:
What gives the exploration and application a fresh take is the section called, “Kimberly’s Corner,” which expands the principles from his wife’s lens. Buttressed between Ray’s well-written prose, it enhances the concepts, and moves the work out of the realm of self-help lecture, and into the ethos of sitting down with trusted friends.
Ray’s concise, clear, and humorously descriptive explanations, anecdotes, and advice make for a fluid read. But don’t let the fluidity fool you: the weight of the words are heftier than the deck of cards Ray often handles.
Ray also lets us know that what appears to be magic, is borne out of a lot of hard work, practice, and an understanding that you don’t reach some plateau where the work ends and you coast into the sunset. As they say in Alcoholics Anonymous, it works if you work it.
Given the proper time, attention, and incorporating the principles Ray outlines, you, too can create in your marriage the wonder, awe, and delight that magic embodies.