Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Book Review: The Book of Man by William Bennett

First, I would like to thank Thomas Nelson publishing and the Pinkston Group for allowing me the opportunity to review an ARC of this book. Thank you. I would also remind you that this book hits stores today so check it out.

I had high expectations for this book when I received it and first started looking at it. Once I got into the book I would have to say that my high expectations were partially met. Let me explain.

The premise of the book is great. I love the idea of illustrating the points of manhood by using famous speeches, essays, etc. I also like the fact that Dr. Bennett used stories of everyday people such as police men and sanitation workers to illustrate his points. It makes it very easy to relate to the book on a personal level. I gathered a lot of great insight and information on what it means to be a man. That part of the book definitely met my expectations.

I had only two problems with this book. The first problem was the sheer length of it. This books is over 500 pages long and only has 6 chapters. I feel as if Dr. Bennett could have gotten his point across with far fewer essays and stories per chapter. About halfway through the chapters I found myself thinking that we could probably move on to the next point and I would still have 50 or so pages to read in the chapter. The second problem was that I sometimes got bogged down with trying to read all of the different writing styles of the original authors of the essays. What I mean by that is that all of the different stories and essays and speeches were written in their period language, so your mind had to constantly try to switch back and forth and that got tiresome during some chapters.

Having said all of that, my overall view of the book is a positive one. This book is a great resource if you are looking for one or two thoughts on manhood and how it relates to different aspects of life. The 6 chapters cover: war, work, play, polis (politics), women and children, and prayers and reflection. If you are going to sit down and read it cover to cover give yourself plenty of time because it's not a quick read.

I would recommend this book for people that work with men and boys such as counselors, teachers, etc. I would also recommend this book for men that want to take a look at what manhood looks like throughout history and today.

This book releases today! So go check it out!

Overall rating 4/5 (because it's such a great reference book)

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