Evelyn's Reviews > Man Up: Cracking the Code of Modern Manhood

Man Up by Carlos Andrés Gómez
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Sep 28, 2012

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Read from September 13 to 28, 2012

I was a bit confused by this book. At first, it simply seemed like it would be a book detailing how men are nowadays, why this is, what influences it, and how to "man up" beyond being the tough jock who needs to solve everything with his fists. But, instead it was, in material, more like a memoir: Carlos talks about his story and occasionally tries to apply it to all men- all the ridiculous code words- "alright dude, catch you later man" that they use constantly in conversations as walls and and shields, a sort of code of conduct.
But, in reality, this book consists of three main chapters, various poems the author wrote as well, and his life story told threefold. Every chapter, he goes over a different aspect, accentuating something else every time- his sex life, his aggression, how he thought he was a knight in shining armor compared to the other guys. This was mostly annoying, but a nice change from normal memoirs. But, I honestly got a little tired after he went over, for the fourth or fifth time, the range of emotions that went through his mind the month after his high school sweetheart's breakup with him.
But, as a lover of Psychology and a person who (like the author) loves hearing people's diverse stories, downfalls, and triumphs, this story was pretty decent. I loved looking at the author's actions, perceiving how they effected him and how men think overall based on the author's own findings. But, he also focuses so much on his own story (3/8's Man Up, 5/8's Memoir of Carlos) so I actually REALLY recommend changing this to "Man Up: A Memoir" as people will have trouble distinguishing this from a memoir, a self-help book, and just a general toughen-up-workout book as guessed solely by the title. Really, this book could use a lot of more work in my opinion before being published but- I'll say this time and time again- I'm just a girl reading a book for men.
At points, this seemed simply to be a high school student's memoir: "Then after I broke up with my girlfriend so-and-so, I left for her best friend so-and-so, but she just ended up sucking my dick for a couple nights then parting ways." Meanwhile, at other points it's profound and moving- when the author isn't using curses to accent his points. But, then again, I'm a girl reading a book for men which is still just in ARC copy- what do I know?
So, read the book and decide for yourself. I'm pretty split on this one.
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