4 out of 4 stars
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Four friends embark on yearly trips around the world. While their brotherly bonds grow, their own self-awareness increases over the years. Interwoven with these heroic trips in picturesque landscapes the men learn to survive the loss of a parent, depression, infidelity, and a plummeting job market. Through everything that life heaped upon them, these four friends learned that by getting back to nature they learn to be men. Over the years their adventures vary from being attacked by cows to an embarrassing naked hot tub Q & A with local Taiwanese businessmen; from propelling down an Icelandic glacier to coming face to face with a male lion. Also, each trip has a corresponding map highlighting the exotic parts of the world they traverse.
Man Mission is an excellent memoir. Eytan Uliel shows what it is like to become a man among the pressures and stereotypes of society. Man Mission earns a 4 out of 4 stars with its raw look at a man’s struggles. Eytan Uliel divulges even the unsavory parts of his life along with how he’s learned to cope over the tough times. There are very few grammatical errors. The text is well edited with a nice flow that keeps the readers interest.
This book is not for the faint of heart. There is some strong language and intense emotions throughout the book. The book is broken into chapters with one for each trip which are in chronological order. The details of the trips are nicely woven with life events around the time of each trip. However, many of the chapters begin with an event in the middle of the trip rather than the beginning making some of the chronology difficult to keep track of. If you like books that are written chronologically, Man Mission may not be the book for you.
It is also important to note that Eytan Uliel was living in Australia when he wrote Man Mission. Some of the terms used are Australian or British in origin rather than American terminology. Such as “tucking” which means eating with enthusiasm; “veld” meaning grass land in South Africa; “dugong” meaning manatee. I mention these because during my initial reading I thought they were typos.
Those who enjoy reading about different cultures and exotic landscapes would enjoy reading Man Mission. Contrary to what the title might imply this book is not tailored towards men or degrading towards women. Man Mission has some good life lessons that everyone can benefit from.
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