Men and Other Mammals Review
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Poet Scott Barron has a pretty good life. Heís got a beautiful girlfriend, a supportive mom, some great friends, an agent who worships him, and a brand new book on the market. But all good things must come to an end. His girlfriend leaves, he makes a fool of himself on national TV, his agent threatens to dump him, and things just keep falling apart. Itís then that Scott realizes that he envies his younger brother, Jes, an overweight struggling writer with a loving wife.

Men and Other Mammals wasnít really what I expected. I expected a goofy-but-a-little-bit-touching, male Bridget Jones-y kind of book. Perhaps I was judging the book by its colorful, cartoony cover. But thatís not really what this book is. Sure, it has its funny moments -- especially in the beginning -- but itís more of an introspective story with a bit of quirk thrown in to lighten it up every once in a while. And then thereís also some strange stuff about penguins, but Iím not going to get into that right now. Youíll just have to find out for yourself -- all Iíll say is that Iíll look differently at penguins from now on.

As I mentioned earlier, this book wasnít what I was expecting -- so I guess that disappointed me a bit. But that doesnít mean I didnít enjoy parts of it. As a writer, I loved the stories about Scottís struggle to be a famous, best-selling poet. And the more serious stuff was often intelligent and insightful -- but there were parts of the book that I found to be just plain bitter and depressing.

So Iím not telling you to avoid this book. In fact, if you do decide to read it, I can promise youíll laugh, youíll cry, youíll learn more about penguins, and you may just learn a little bit about yourself. Just know what youíre getting yourself into, and you wonít be disappointed.

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