Review by espo -- Man Mission by Eytan Uliel

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espo
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Review by espo -- Man Mission by Eytan Uliel

Post by espo »

[Following is a volunteer review of "Man Mission" by Eytan Uliel.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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Man Mission by Eytan Uliel is a novel that beautifully explores the intersections between manhood, vulnerability, and adventure.

The author narrates the adventures of four lifetime friends who embark on yearly Man Missions and follows their development from boyhood into manhood. The novel begins when the main character and his friend Sam decide to take a week off from their corporate lawyer jobs and visit New Zealand, where they undertake a challenging hike that inaugurates the beginning of Man Mission. Daniel and Alec will be added to the team as associate sub-probationary members, joining their two other friends on the next fourteen Man Missions. When embarking on their annual adventure, the four men have to abide by a charter that allows for no luxuries or whining, and encourages them to overcome their limits and be fearless.

Man Mission is exquisitely written. Besides being exceptionally edited and devoid of any mistakes, the book vividly captures the beautiful landscapes and exciting adventures that the four characters encounter on their missions. Through the author’s skillful and detailed descriptions, the reader is able to join the men while they sit under a canopy of twinkling stars in New Zealand, marvel at the sight of wild animals on their safari in South Africa, and witness the breathtaking spectacle of the Northern Lights in Iceland.

The aspect of the book that I like the most is character development. Eytan Uliel excellently describes the main character’s growth and the tension he feels as he is torn between his familial and professional responsibilities and his insatiable thirst for adventure and freedom. The author manages to achieve the perfect equilibrium between fast-paced narrative and exploration of the main character’s feelings. The book carefully documents the challenges and events that the protagonist encounters as he navigates adulthood. The narrative is also filled with numerous nuggets of wisdom that the main character draws from the hardships he goes through. I particularly appreciate the author’s exploration of male vulnerability, showing the negative circumstances that the main character finds himself in as a result of suppressing his emotions and hiding his profound sense of unfulfillment from his loved ones.

One more thing that I particularly enjoyed about the book is its humor. The book contains numerous profanities, but I think that they were placed strategically to make the narrative enjoyable, vivid and amusing to read. In fact, on many occasions, I could not help but laugh out loud. Although I did not mind the profanities, I definitely discourage readers who do not appreciate foul language from reading the book.

There was nothing in the book that I particularly disliked. However, if I had to change something in it, I would have added more of Rachel’s perspective to the story, delving into her feelings about staying home with the kids and the sinking relationship with her husband. I would have also loved to read more about the main character’s relationship with his kids.

Considering that Man Mission was professionally edited, excellently written and enjoyable to read, I rate it 4 out of 4 stars. I warmly recommend this book to readers who are in their twenties, as it speaks volumes about the uncertainties of growing up and having to deal with the challenges of adulthood.

******
Man Mission
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Post by NetMassimo »

I see your point about Rachel's perspective, as we know her only through the narrator's eyes. Unfortunately, that's a problem with stories narrated in the first person. We remain with some doubts about Rachel, still I don't think it detracted from the overall excellent result.
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Post by espo »

NetMassimo wrote: ↑
22 Jan 2020, 07:57
I see your point about Rachel's perspective, as we know her only through the narrator's eyes. Unfortunately, that's a problem with stories narrated in the first person. We remain with some doubts about Rachel, still I don't think it detracted from the overall excellent result.
Yes, this is indeed very true; it did not make the book any less enjoyable. It's just that I got very frustrated with her behavior, and I later realized that it must have been because I did not see the reasons behind her actions. But as you said, the story is all about the main character, so it's very understandable that it is so. Thank you for your insightful feedback, Massimo!
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Post by inaramid »

Very insightful review! You made a great point about the "exploration of male vulnerability" - that's one thing that made the book seem more interesting.

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Post by espo »

inaramid wrote: ↑
24 Jan 2020, 06:07
Very insightful review! You made a great point about the "exploration of male vulnerability" - that's one thing that made the book seem more interesting.
Thank you, inaramid! That was the aspect of the book I appreciated the most, it was refreshing to have this nuance in a book about all-boys traveling! I appreciate you passing by, and look forward to reading more reviews of yours.
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Post by Julius_ »

I've read this book and I like how adventurous these missions were. Your review was well written and I loved your summary. Thanks for the review.
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Post by espo »

Julius_ wrote: ↑
24 Jan 2020, 14:43
I've read this book and I like how adventurous these missions were. Your review was well written and I loved your summary. Thanks for the review.
Thank you so much, Julius! I look forward to reading more reviews from you.
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Post by SomeoneInTheWorld »

I read so many great things about this book, I can't wait to read it. Thanks for the great review!

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Post by espo »

SomeoneInTheWorld wrote: ↑
26 Jan 2020, 09:24
I read so many great things about this book, I can't wait to read it. Thanks for the great review!
Thank you so much for your kind comment. I hope you will enjoy it as much as I did, and I'll be looking forward to your review! :)
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Post by Nerea »

I totally agree. The book contains loads of humor. I think Sam was best at presenting humorous comments. I enjoyed reading the book too. Great review.
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Post by espo »

Nerea wrote: ↑
26 Jan 2020, 17:13
I totally agree. The book contains loads of humor. I think Sam was best at presenting humorous comments. I enjoyed reading the book too. Great review.
oh yeah, I was cracking up at Sam's jokes throughout the book :lol2: Thank you for stopping by!
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Post by ButterscotchCherrie »

The author had a very interesting idea to write a book about men somehow continuing their student lifestyle as they enter a new life stage. I enjoyed reading your insightful review.

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Post by espo »

ButterscotchCherrie wrote: ↑
31 Jan 2020, 04:07
The author had a very interesting idea to write a book about men somehow continuing their student lifestyle as they enter a new life stage. I enjoyed reading your insightful review.
It was indeed quite a brilliant idea and a pleasant read. Thank you for stopping by!
The strongest impetus a man will ever have, in an individual sense, will come from a woman he admires.

- George Jackson, "Soledad Brother"

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