Kind Words for Heart of a Man
Heart of a Man: Men’s Stories for Women gathers writings intended for both sexes that explore men’s feelings … a subject sadly neglected or downplayed in too many literary accounts. It’s also an invitation to women to understand men’s lives, thoughts, struggles, choices, and being a man in the world.
These accounts appear in many literary forms here, from essays to poetry and fiction, all capturing the essence of the male experience at different stages of life, from childhood to adulthood.
Eugene Karlin’s lovely black and white line drawings pepper the collection, bringing life to selected quotes that emphasize the topics and feelings explored in these writings.
Some of these authors’ names will be familiar, from Shakespeare and Lord Byron to Stephen Crane. Most will not … but that doesn’t diminish this anthology’s power or authority. Within its covers are suggestive stories from the lives and hearts of men who write about their greatest challenges, longings, and most influential experiences and revelations in life.
Particularly evocative are works that capture pivot points in life experience (as most of them do). One example is Jed Diamond’s powerful reflection on fatherhood in “My Father, My Son, Myself:” “When I became a father, I thought to myself, I’m going to do things differently. The birth of my first child changed my life…The nurse handed him to me, and as I looked into his eyes, I made a vow: ‘I will be a different kind of father than my father was to me. I will do everything I can to help bring about a world where fathers are fully engaged with their families throughout their lives.'”
The concluding section offers particularly important insights into how these stories were selected above others, why certain topics were included or excluded, and the main differentiation between male and female perspectives which is so intrinsic to the strength of this collection: “I learned how differently men and women see the same word, sentence, paragraph, story, book cover, and book.”
This anthology offers what every woman has dreamed of … men confident in their male persona, yet unafraid to bare their hearts. Heart of a Man offers a rare opportunity to walk in a diverse range of male shoes and experiences. Come along with Bill Amatneek as he collects and shares these jewels of male insight. Heart of a Man will bring the sexes together with newfound understanding and literary revelations that resonate in heart and mind.
– Diane Donovan for Midwest Review of Books
These are deeply moving stories, a marvelous book, and a real treat.
Amatneek has cleverly curated this collection to take us from a boy’s struggle to define what it means to be a man, to a man’s search for identity as son, father, friend, lover, warrior.
These literary gems are at once profoundly personal and universal. We encounter what it means to grow up male: the glories, humiliations, heroics, cruelties, fears, and fantasies.
After reading these tales, women will not look at the boys and men in their life in the same way. But, then, neither will men.
– Richard A. Warshak, Ph.D., author of Divorce Poison
Heart of a Man takes you on a secret journey inside the heart, mind and soul of men, revealing a gentleness and introspection that most women never get to see. These stories should do a lot to soften the edges of the war between the sexes.
– Carole Lieberman, M.D., author of Bad Boys and Bad Girls
This is a wonderfully rich collection of writings, extending both wide and deep. It is a true “companion volume,” a book that offers comfort, humor, catharsis, insight for anyone wishing to explore the great mystery of human gender.
– Noelle Oxenhandler, author of The Eros of Parenthood
When women read this book, they will feel their hearts fill up with the wonder of manhood. When men read it, they will chuckle and tear up with memories.
– Michael Gurian, author of The Wonder of Boys and The Wonder of Girls
Heart of a Man is a crucial work for our present day. It is a gift to women and men both.
This is a unique and wonderful collection of stories that will touch the hearts of all who read it. And I’m not saying that because my story is included. Women hunger to hear men’s deepest truths; I can think of no better opportunity than you’ll find in Heart of a Man.
– Jed Diamond, author of My Distant Dad
This anthology should be required reading not only for girls and women but for boys and men. Very moving, hopeful and mind-opening on so many social issues.
– Peggy Seeger, U.K.
It’s wonderful. What great writing. You’ve got a hit on your hands. It’s got it all. I laughed, I cried and was amazed at the honesty.
– Bonita C., Sonoma, CA
Thank you for posting these glimpses into men’s hearts.
– Betsy F., Ocean Isle Beach, N.C.
This anthology is needed now more than ever. I found it enlightening.
– Ama Bolton, U.K.
I was blown away by your anthology. Not since my foray into John McPhee’s books have I felt such a strong connection to the authors and their subjects. You have my heartfelt thanks for the work you are doing.
– Herb Frank, Middletown, DE
Heart of a Man will help us cross that clichéd divide, that men “think” and women “feel.” Thank you, Bill, and all the creative contributors, for shining a brighter light on the heart we all share.
– Peter Rowan, CA