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I really liked this story. There were sections that were as riveting and relatable as anything I have read lately. I especially like the dichotomy between the hipster Seattle post-college scene and the military. Both absurd in their own way, but both full of very likable people sometimes doing unlikable things. This part seemed honest and important. This story does not tie up every loose end into a neat package. I suppose that is very real, too. It's just not very satisfying. The Mani character seemed underdeveloped, as well.
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I picked this book up thinking that it was your typical war coming-of-age novel, but it's actually a softer, more nuanced book that addresses the inner struggles of not just of the soldier, but the philosopher, the artist and the reporter as well. It's really quite well done in the way the characters' lives overlap and interweave, and the narration (which is done by both authors) provides a great entertainment value as they leverage their different tone and cadence with the appropriate parts of the story.
If you're looking for a solid novel with the spice of war, sex and personal identity, this is top notch.