Friday, October 17, 2014

Book Review: John and Samuel Eldredge's Killing Lions

There are a lot of books coming out geared toward men and masculinity. It makes sense that more authors would chart out this territory as "self-help" books had long been one where women were the primary buyers. My only question is it women hoping men will read these books buying them, women reading them then telling men what they said, or men actually reading them? Regardless they are bound to start a conversation, and if you're looking to start a conversation with you're older son this just might be the book.

Summary: Men are faced with challenges nowadays as the tide of roles in relationships shift, and jobs are harder to find that can provide for a family. This book isn't laid out in a way to read like a self help book though. Instead it reads like a conversation between John and Sam, father and son, so you feel like you are taking part in a real conversation you might hope to take with your father or your son. It brings up honest topics, and real issues that men might find themselves in as they transition into manhood.

Writing: The conversation format is what makes the book stand out. Most books risk getting repetitive when they take the self help, chapter by chapter format that most take. Where you pick a topic, and then tell the reader about it for several pages. With Killing Lions you find the conversation being one that is new with each paragraph, because when one might bring up an aspect of that struggle, the father will then share experiences or advice on what the son is dealing with.

Is it helpful to men? That would be hard for me to say since I'm a female, so I tried to imagine what it would be like if I was a man reading this. I think most men, especially young men will find the scenarios true to their life. Maybe more so if you're a believer in Christ, as the topics do stay themed in a faith in Christ. The issues of transitioning from the dreams of boyhood into ones where you shift into marrying and if you choose, raising a family, are ones that seem much more difficult for the upcoming generation to transition into, and John Eldredge makes some good points on why those issues might be taking place while guiding his son.

Don't get me wrong, while helpful, as a female there were some things I didn't enjoy though, and that is the sort of stereotypical view of women. While I may be some sorts of woman they are talking about in the book, not all women are. It seems if we mention women who aren't ones dependent on being providing for, or who aren't as chatty or sociable as other women, we think those women are rebelling against what their nature calls for. Unlike, Samuel's wife, Susie, I am very relational driven. I don't seek out socializing, and it's actually more so my husband who seeks out time with his friends and people to socialize with. Don't get me wrong, as females I have feminine qualities, but I hate how feminine qualities are tried to be boxed in and generically applied to most if not all females. Recently, my own thoughts are that are personalities are much more about where we fall into the 16 personality types on a Myers Brigg scale than it is where or not you're male or female, and it makes sense as those different personalities can be attributed to both sexes, but usually more prominent in another. You would approach say an ESFP female and assume she has the same reaction and needs as an INFJ female.

Some good points for men, and it has a basic approach in at least dealing with things, and even in getting by in love, I highly caution ever boxing people in based on their sex though as there are a variety of personalities that trace to a many different needs whether female or male. It at least guides as a conversation starter though.

This book was provided by Book Look Bloggers for a review.

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