Manhood for Amateurs

The Pleasures and Regrets of a Husband, Father, and Son

By Michael Chabon
(Harper, Hardcover, 9780061490187, 320pp.)

Publication Date: October 6, 2009

Other Editions of This Title: Paperback, Paperback, Paperback

Shop Local
Enter your zip code below to find indies closest to you.

Go


Selected by Indie Booksellers for the October 2009 Indie Next List
“This collection of essays offers Michael Chabon's thoughts and observations on a wide range of topics from various vantage points in his life: son, grandson, brother, lover, husband, and father. The subjects are varied, but the writing is consistently sharp, poignant, humorous, and a pure joy to read.”
-- Anne Miley, Porter Square Books, Cambridge, MA
Selected by Indie Booksellers for the Summer '10 Reading Group List
“Demonstrating his range, depth, intelligence, and tenderness, Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Chabon takes us on a tour of contemporary maleness via his own life. It's a fascinating complement and counterpoint to the recent and wonderful Bad Mother, a tour of femaleness by his wife, Ayelet Waldman. Both books are terrific reading group choices, and they'll leave you feeling that Chabon and Waldman are your new -- and smartest -- best friends.”
-- Banna Rubinow, The River's End Bookstore, Oswego, NY


Description

The Pulitzer Prize-winning author— "an immensely gifted writer and a magical prose stylist" (Michiko Kakutani, New York Times)—offers his first major work of nonfiction, an autobiographical narrative as inventive, beautiful, and powerful as his acclaimed, award-winning fiction.

A shy manifesto, an impractical handbook, the true story of a fabulist, an entire life in parts and pieces, Manhood for Amateurs is the first sustained work of personal writing from Michael Chabon. In these insightful, provocative, slyly interlinked essays, one of our most brilliant and humane writers presents his autobiography and his vision of life in the way so many of us experience our own lives: as a series of reflections, regrets, and reexaminations, each sparked by an encounter, in the present, that holds some legacy of the past.

What does it mean to be a man today? Chabon invokes and interprets and struggles to reinvent for us, with characteristic warmth and lyric wit, the personal and family history that haunts him even as—simply because—it goes on being written every day. As a devoted son, as a passionate husband, and above all as the father of four young Americans, Chabon presents his memories of childhood, of his parents' marriage and divorce, of moments of painful adolescent comedy and giddy encounters with the popular art and literature of his own youth, as a theme played—on different instruments, with a fresh tempo and in a new key—by the mad quartet of which he now finds himself co-conductor.

At once dazzling, hilarious, and moving, Manhood for Amateurs is destined to become a classic.




About the Author

Michael Chabon is the bestselling and Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Mysteries of Pittsburgh, Wonder Boys, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, Summerland (a novel for children), The Final Solution, The Yiddish Policemen's Union, and Gentlemen of the Road; as well as the short story collections A Model World and Werewolves in Their Youth; and the essay collections Maps and Legends and Manhood for Amateurs. He is the Chairman of the Board of the MacDowell Colony. He lives in Berkeley, California, with his wife, the novelist Ayelet Waldman, and their children.




NPR
Friday, Jun 25, 2010

The Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist opens up about his experiences as a father to four children and husband to writer Ayelet Waldman in his book of personal essays, Manhood for Amateurs: The Pleasures and Regrets of a Husband, Father and Son, now out in paperback. More at NPR.org

NPR Audio Player Requires Flash Upgrade: Please upgrade your plug-in to view this content.

NPR
Monday, Dec 14, 2009

Book reviewer Alan Cheuse selects the highlights of this holiday season: futuristic dystopias; things that go bump in the night; portraits from Norman Rockwell's America; gay New York; a celebration of our immigrant adventures; one writer's journey to manhood; and, of course, Long John Silver. More at NPR.org

NPR Audio Player Requires Flash Upgrade: Please upgrade your plug-in to view this content.

NPR
Monday, Dec 14, 2009

Book reviewer Alan Cheuse selects the highlights of this holiday season: futuristic dystopias; things that go bump in the night; portraits from Norman Rockwell's America; gay New York; a celebration of our immigrant adventures; one writer's journey to manhood; and, of course, Long John Silver. More at NPR.org

NPR Audio Player Requires Flash Upgrade: Please upgrade your plug-in to view this content.

NPR
Sunday, Oct 11, 2009

Author Michael Chabon has seen manhood from just about every angle — as a boy obsessed with comic books, as a husband serving as a surrogate son to his father-in-law, and now as a dad trying to be honest with his kids about his early years smoking pot. The author, who won a Pulitzer for The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, tells host Guy Raz about his amazing adventures in domesticity, chronicled in his new book of essays, Manhood for Amateurs: the Pleasures and Regrets of a Husband, Father, and Son. More at NPR.org

NPR Audio Player Requires Flash Upgrade: Please upgrade your plug-in to view this content.

NPR
Wednesday, Oct 7, 2009

The Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist opens up about his experiences as a father to four children and husband to writer Ayelet Waldman in his new book of personal essays, Manhood for Amateurs: The Pleasures and Regrets of a Husband, Father and Son. More at NPR.org

NPR Audio Player Requires Flash Upgrade: Please upgrade your plug-in to view this content.

NPR
Tuesday, Oct 6, 2009

Excerpt: 'Manhood for Amateurs: The Pleasures and Regrets of a Husband, Father, and Son' More at NPR.org

NPR Audio Player Requires Flash Upgrade: Please upgrade your plug-in to view this content.




Praise For Manhood for Amateurs

“Hilarious, moving, pleasurable, disturbing, transcendent, restless. . . . And seemingly by accident, Chabon ultimately does create a composite image of ideal manhood, one that is modest, responsible, bemused, empathic, and thoughtful.”
-Jeremy Adam Smith, San Francisco Chronicle

“Chabon brings his prodigiously entertaining verbal intelligence to a very personal investigation of what it means to be a father, a son, and a husband.”
-Lev Grossman, Time (Top 10 Nonfiction Books Citation)

“Wry and heartfelt, Chabon’s riffs uncover brand-new insights in even the most quotidian subjects. . . . He applies an unusual level of wit and candor to the form.”
-Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“Both lyrical and side-splittingly funny. . . . Readers seeking the intelligence of Updike; the gentle, brainy appeal of Sedaris; or the literary virtuosity of Nabokov will thoroughly enjoy.”
-Douglas C. Lord, Library Journal

“Chabon takes a big, fat swing at the essay form with his second collection and achieves success. . . . These warm and thoughtful essays underscore just how good a wordsmith Chabon is-regardless of the form he chooses.”
-Jerry Eberle, Booklist

Indie Bookstore Finder

Indie Bestsellers

Confessions of a Self-Help Writer
Benjamin Dehaven
Lagniappe Publishing
Annihilation
Jeff VanderMeer
FSG Originals
The Martian
Andy Weir
Crown
Benediction
Kent Haruf
Vintage

Make Your Own Wishlist








More than 150 writers from 40 events will gather in New York City for PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature, April 28 – May 4, 2014.

For its 10th anniversary, the festival celebrates those who have dared to stand ‘on the edge,’ risking their careers, and sometimes their lives, to speak out for their art and beliefs. Join us for a wide range of events, including debates, one-on-one conversations, participatory workshops and performances in venues throughout the city. Use the code PEN14 (use PEN2014 for events at The Public Theater) and receive a 20 percent discount on most events. www.worldvoicesfestival.org

Update Profile