6 Classics to Add to the All-Male Book Club's Reading List

6 Classics to Add to the All-Male Book Club's Reading List

Straight white male authors are finally getting the recognition they have been systematically denied for centuries.

At the Man Book Club, a safe space for adult boys to be adult boys, 16 men indulge in works written for men, by men, the New York Times reported. In its ninth year, this meeting of man minds gives members the opportunity to voice their thoughts and feelings on some of the literary canon's finest works, which — let's face it — is a rarity for males.

In an interview with the New York Times, 53-year-old Andrew McCullough said, "I was always a little jealous of my wife's book clubs. Now our wives are jealous of us." He went on to explain, "We do not read so-called chick lit. The main character cannot be a woman."

The men of the International Ultra Manly Book Club, which is somehow a different book club for men than this one, devised a ranking system to evaluate a book's steeliness. Before risking opening a novel that could pass the literary equivalent of the Bechdel test, its members assign each selection between one and five hand grenades.

Because we'd never want anyone to suffer a frivolous beach read, here are our recommendations for books that will put "the penis" in "the pen is mightier":

The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway

Points earned for:
· Men returning from war
· Bull fights
· Heavy drinking

Points lost for:
· Male impotence (bad)
· Female character Brett Ashley (acts like a man —  isn't one)
· "No homo" vibes

Moby-Dick by Herman Melville

Points earned for:
· No female characters (except for two servants)
· Man battling the elements
· The word "dick" in the title

Points lost for:
· Man LOSING battle with the elements
· Bosom buddies Ishmael and Queequeg sharing a bed as a "cosy loving pair"
· It's surprisingly tender?

On the Road by Jack Kerouac

Points earned for:
· Men on the road SPEEDING
· Its exploration of Beat culture — aka drugs, booze and Male Intellect
· America, home of the free, the brave, the manly men
· Protagonist Dean Moriarty's divorce (unshackling from the old ball and chain)

Points lost for:
· Discussion of Dean Moriarty's divorce. (Per the Houston Men's Book Club unofficial guidelines: "When your friend gets divorced," as Edward Nawotka told the Times, "you don't sit around with the guys wondering, 'How do you think Jon feels about getting divorced?'")

My Struggle by Karl Ove Knausgaard

Points earned for:
· Sheer length — a testament to all-important male endurance
· Heavy drinking
· Unvarnished and very close look into the inner workings of the male mind — relatable
· The onus of fatherhood

Points lost for:
· Daddy issues
· Many tears shed

Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace

Points earned for:
· Heft — ability to hold the 1,079-page tome for long stretches while standing so women can sit during commutes is clear indicator of both strength and chivalry
· Satisfies International Ultra Manly Book Club's desire to "proclaim that yes, we too, are intellectuals" [sic]
· Sports
· Preponderance of male characters

Points lost for:
· Admission of male weakness
· Are we really expected to read this between now and next month?

Unto the Sons by Gay Talese

Points earned for:
· Gay Talese doesn't even know what female writers are, so you know the women won't have their hands in this
· Deep dive into the — or a — patriarchy
· Mob stuff
· World War II stuff

Points lost for:
· One whole chapter focused on a woman, who's trying to shelter squirrels for chrissakes