ONE OF THE GUYS: The Wising Up of an American Man by Harry Stein
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ONE OF THE GUYS: The Wising Up of an American Man

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Stein (Hoopla, Tiny Tim) writes the ""Ethics"" column in Esquire--funny, energetic pronouncements on personal morality--and here presents an engaging memoir about growing up as a baby-boomer male. Stein sets out to show that his experiences really do make him ""one of the guys,"" a fairly typical male of his generation--and actually succeeds without turning himself into a clichÉ. Most male readers will identify with his problems relating to his father, Broadway composer Joe Stein, even if their own lather didn't write Fiddler on the Roof. Ditto for his first failure (the awful day of the Little League tryouts, with Dad looking on); his first teen-age love, the nubile Christie (""She is like a very beautiful bird--a lot of energy and a very small brain""); and his first ""best friend"" friendship, with a fellow camper named Paul, which continued on into adulthood and then withered on the vine as Paul became a successful film producer. Stein is quite open about his relationships with women, admitting the ""emotional withdrawal"" that many men suffer from; the latter part of the book chronicles--often quite amusingly--his various girlfriends (including a luscious French stewardess during Stein's days in Paris with Metro magazine) before he finally settles with a lovely, ""complicated"" woman--and two small kids--on Manhattan's Upper West Side. This is not the rather wimpy, self-basting analysis one often finds in books about today's males. Stein is insightful (he describes Mets' first baseman Keith Hemandez as someone who ""appears to the naked eye all but incapable of joy""), and his ""guys"" come across like real live human beings.

Pub Date: March 1st, 1988
Publisher: Simon & Schuster