Premise: Have you ever been at a party with nothing to add to the conversation? Or perhaps you have been engaged in debate and at a loss for a witty retort. Quotes Every Man Should Know is a collection of quotes that allows you to insert a bit of wisdom or humor into just about any setting. Just don’t be that guy who obviously memorized a book of quotes to randomly throw them into every conversation to make himself appear smarter than he actually is.
Themes: Quotes Every Man Should Know covers topics ranging from politics, religion, philosophy, humor, and even quotes about quotes. With the intent to provide quips for an array of situations, the content can be geared for many occasions.
Pros: There is certainly a good assortment of quotes in this collection. The topics are separated out into chapters and delineated clearly into these groups for easy access. Nick Mamatas even takes the time to point out quotes inaccurately attributed to people on the internet and clarify their true or probable origins. The dueling quotes at the end show us that wisdom can seemingly be found to support any argument, especially on controversial topics. Mamatas does a good job summarizing and providing some commentary in each section.
Cons: Quotes Every Man Should know is in no way a comprehensive selection of quotes, nor is every quote in the book necessarily useful. I point specifically the somewhat sparse and random selection of quotes from the Bible picked from Proverbs, but also include the useless quotes from people such as U.S. presidential candidate Vermin Supreme and comedian Sarah Silverman. There were some places where I felt Mamatas’ commentary was unnecessary, or in the case of some of the competing quotes added his personal bias toward one of the two.
Recommendations: As a gift for a birthday, bar mitzvah, or recent graduation, Quotes Every Man Should know is a fun way to encourage a boy growing into a man to seek wisdom by providing tidbits from others to guide him. Don’t attempt to use it to find wisdom for every situation, but merely as a way in add spice into conversations. As Mamatas points out, the internet is a source of endless inaccurately attributed quotations, so make sure your sources are correct when doing so to avoid putting words into Abraham Lincoln’s mouth.
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I received a copy from the publisher to write this honest review.