The best toxic masculinity books

1 authors have picked their favorite books about toxic masculinity and why they recommend each book.

Soon, you will be able to filter by genre, age group, and more. Sign up here to follow our story as we build a better way to explore books.

Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate commission (learn more).

The Evolution of a Girl

By L.E. Bowman,

Book cover of The Evolution of a Girl

So, a totally underrated, amazing writer and poet. I don’t know much about poetry. I was told by a friend to read this book and I’m so pleased I listened to her. Love the poems in here as some really spoke to my soul, my heart. Beautiful, relatable, powerful, original, heartfelt, heart-warming. I mean I could list adjectives until the cows come home people! Any book which helps women to understand and inspire them on how to grow and become happy in what is sometimes a world full of toxic masculinity gets my thumbs up, esp when it doesn’t read like a feminist on a power rant!! Read it, you can thank me on Instagram after.


Who am I?

I was raised by my Grandmother who escaped Nazi-occupied Germany. A strong, proud, capable woman who eventually, despite arriving in the UK as a refugee, ended up working for Winston Churchill as a war secretary. Not a feminist but rather a true champion of women. I believe a woman's body, her mind, her essence is her own! I write about strong females, sex positive not under the control of an Alpha male. I have a rare gift for writing Erotica with a real story, which will transport you as if in the room with my characters. More than this, I create characters you'll care about and take with you on your own journey path.


I wrote...

Diary of a Contemporary Woman

By Lucy Pussett,

Book cover of Diary of a Contemporary Woman

What is my book about?

Having reached 34, Angelique Santoro finds herself feeling trapped and deeply unhappy within the constraints of traditional relationships. Uneasy to perform the role of life partner or girlfriend in the way society has designed for all women. Finally, she takes the courage to break free and becomes single for the first time in 15 years. Breaking away from the ties that bind us. Breaking away from the fear of being alone and lonely to become what she was always meant to be.

For the Love of Men

By Liz Plank,

Book cover of For the Love of Men: From Toxic to a More Mindful Masculinity

I always get pissed off when I hear some guy ranting that feminists are anti-male. In fact, I think feminists are the most pro-male humans on the planet: in spite of 8,000 years to prove the contrary, they believe that men can be peaceful and loving, and can be equal and equitable partners with women. Liz Plank is one such woman. Her book shows exactly that.


Who am I?

My work over the past four decades has been to promote women’s rights, end violence against women, promote social justice, and positively transform the lives of men. I’ve worked extensively with the United Nations; presidents, prime ministers, and governments; companies and unions; NGOs and educators in fifty countries. I continue to be inspired by the many incredible people I get to meet. In addition to my talks to communities, companies, and universities, my activism, and my books on this subject, I also write fiction, most recently my mystery The Last Exit.  


I wrote...

The Time Has Come: Why Men Must Join the Gender Equality Revolution

By Michael Kaufman,

Book cover of The Time Has Come: Why Men Must Join the Gender Equality Revolution

What is my book about?

It’s true that men gain enormous benefits in male-dominated societies. But surprisingly, the ways we define men’s power and raise boys to be men come with enormous costs to men ourselves. My book combines story-telling and hard-hitting analysis to talk with compassion about why men must take a stand for gender equality. 

It's a positive story that focuses on the changing workplace, ending violence against women, raising boys to be men, and the wonderful redefinition of fatherhood. The gender equality revolution is men’s chance to join women to make history and remake the world in ways that will end injustices and ultimately benefit us all.

Unwelcome

By Quincy Carroll,

Book cover of Unwelcome

In this memoir disguised as a novel (or novel disguised as a memoir), the shy and socially awkward Cole, of mixed Chinese and white American parentage, struggles to hold down a job as an imported beer salesman in China’s Changsha while pursuing his only romantic hope, a female scam artist who bilked him out of thousands of dollars. In a parallel narrative, friends and family in the Bay Area shed more light on the hapless anti-hero during his stints back home. One wonders how the author and protagonist could ever be the same person and how Carroll was able to gain the distance and objectivity to pen the narrative at all, much less with such skill. We sense that the fictional bulwark is resorted to as a defense against the author’s merciless deconstruction of himself, right down to the sexually fraught, agonizingly ambiguous ending. This is not a feel-good redemption…


Who am I?

Having lived in China for almost three decades, I am naturally interested in the expat writing scene. I am a voracious reader of fiction and nonfiction on China, past and present. One constant in this country is change, and that requires keeping up with the latest publications by writers who have lived here and know it well. As an author of three novels, one short story collection, and three essay collections on China myself, I believe I have something of my own to contribute, although I tend to hew to gritty, offbeat themes to capture a contemporary China unknown to the West.


I wrote...

Confucius and Opium: China Book Reviews

By Isham Cook,

Book cover of Confucius and Opium: China Book Reviews

What is my book about?

Have foreigners shaped China’s history to a greater extent than has previously been acknowledged, reaching back possibly millennia? Was Confucius’ most famous book, The Analects, inspired by entheogenic medicines imported from abroad, possession of which in the 1930s brought one before the firing squad in the name of Confucius? In these book review essays by Isham Cook, foreign devils, old China Hands, eccentric expatriates, and a few Chinese tell an offbeat history of China’s last two centuries, with a backward glance at ancient China as told by Western mummies.

Sal and Gabi Break the Universe

By Carlos Hernandez,

Book cover of Sal and Gabi Break the Universe

This delightfully strange sci-fi romp opens with Cuban-American budding magician Sal Vidon fending off a bully by summoning a raw chicken from another universe, and things only get wackier from there. Among the multi-dimensional hijinks and unusual characters (including a sentient and sarcastic entropy sweeper), Sal stands out as a memorable middle-grade protagonist who’s comfortable and secure in all his weird glory.

Who am I?

When I was in school, I often struggled to figure out where I “fit”. Yeah, I know that’s a common struggle among angsty teens. But as a biracial, bisexual kid who loved basketball and books, I didn’t feel totally at home in any of the stereotypical Breakfast Club-style categories that showed up even in many of the books I read: jock, nerd, prep, etc. Now, as a dad, coach, and writer, I know those boxes aren’t real. I’m passionate about giving kids stories that challenge old ideas about what boys are “supposed” to be and help them explore the full range of who they can be.


I wrote...

Thanks a Lot, Universe

By Chad Lucas,

Book cover of Thanks a Lot, Universe

What is my book about?

Brian has always been anxious, but things get worse when he and his brother are placed in foster care. Ezra notices Brian pulling away and wants to help, but he worries his friends might figure out he has a crush on Brian. But when Brian and his brother run away, Ezra takes the leap and reaches out. Both boys must decide if they're willing to risk sharing parts of themselves they'd rather hide. If they can be brave, they might find the best in themselves—and each other.

"A glorious ode to the beauty of pre-teen friendship…. By far my favorite middle-grade novel of 2021!" -- Nic Stone, New York Times bestselling author of Clean Getaway

New book lists related to toxic masculinity

All book lists related to toxic masculinity

Bookshelves related to toxic masculinity