BOOKSMITH: Thomas Page McBee / Amateur

Wednesday, August 29, 2018 - 7:30pm to 9:00pm

Booksmith hosts an evening with Thomas Page McBee as he celebrates his new book, Amateur: A True Story About What Makes a Man. With Thomas in conversation is Virgie Tovar. Please join us!


From an award-winning writer whose work bristles with "hard-won strength, insight, agility, and love" (Maggie Nelson), an exquisite and troubling narrative of masculinity, violence, and society.


In this groundbreaking new book, the author, a trans man, trains to fight in a charity match at Madison Square Garden while struggling to untangle the vexed relationship between masculinity and violence. Through his experience boxing—learning to get hit, and to hit back; wrestling with the camaraderie of the gym; confronting the betrayals and strength of his own body—McBee examines the weight of male violence, the pervasiveness of gender stereotypes, and the limitations of conventional masculinity. A wide-ranging exploration of gender in our society, Amateur is ultimately a story of hope, as McBee traces a new way forward, a new kind of masculinity, inside the ring and outside of it.


In this graceful, stunning, and uncompromising exploration of living, fighting, and healing, we gain insight into the stereotypes and shifting realities of masculinity today through the eyes of a new man.



“Until I read this book, I didn't realize how tired I was of reading about masculinity as cold, hard, and fixed. Amateur is a warm hug. It's also an invitation to everyone who's ever struggled to accept failure, searched for a sense of belonging, or said "Ugh, men" in an exasperated tone to think harder and be kinder. I want the world to read it.” – Ann Friedman, New York Magazine columnist and co-host of Call Your Girlfriend


“Amateur is a brutally honest look at the problems with masculinity, laced through with hope, and joy, and possibility. Thomas McBee confronts fears and realities with grace, toughness and poetry. A beautiful book.” Michelle Tea, author of Black Wave and How to Grow Up



Thomas Page McBee is the author of the Lambda award-winning memoir Man Alive: A True Story of Violence, Forgiveness, and Becoming a Man, which was named a best book of 2014 by NPR, BuzzFeedKirkus Reviews, and Publishers Weekly. His writing has appeared in The New York TimesPlayboyGlamour, The Rumpus, and Pacific Standard. He lives in Brooklyn. 


Virgie Tovar is an author, activist and one of the nation's leading experts and lecturers on fat discrimination and body image. She is the founder of Babecamp, started the hashtag campaign #LoseHateNotWeight, and edited the groundbreaking anthology Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love and Fashion (Seal Press 2012). Virgie has been featured by the New York Times, MTV, Al Jazeera, NPR, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Huffington Post, Cosmopolitan, and BUST.


RSVP is appreciated, but not required. If you cannot attend the event but would like to request a signed copy of AmateurMan Alive, and/or You Have the Right to Remain Fat, order below and put your request in the comments field.


Amateur: A True Story About What Makes a Man Cover Image
ISBN: 9781501168741
Availability: Out of Stock - Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scribner - August 14th, 2018

Man Alive: A True Story of Violence, Forgiveness and Becoming a Man (City Lights/Sister Spit) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780872866249
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: City Lights Publishers - City Lights Publishe - September 9th, 2014

You Have the Right to Remain Fat Cover Image
ISBN: 9781936932313
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Feminist Press - August 14th, 2018