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Interview: Justin Baldoni Undefines What It Means to Be 'Man Enough'

'My book is a personal exploration of what it means to be a man, told by myself as a man.'
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  • Man Enough
  • 'My book is a personal exploration of what it means to be a man, told by myself as a man.'

Publisher's Summary

A gripping, fearless exploration of masculinity

The effects of traditionally defined masculinity have become one of the most prevalent social issues of our time. In this engaging and provocative new book, beloved actor, director, and social activist Justin Baldoni reflects on his own struggles with masculinity. With insight and honesty, he explores a range of difficult, sometimes uncomfortable topics including strength and vulnerability, relationships and marriage, body image, sex and sexuality, racial justice, gender equality, and fatherhood.

Writing from experience, Justin invites us to move beyond the scripts we’ve learned since childhood and the roles we are expected to play. He challenges men to be brave enough to be vulnerable, to be strong enough to be sensitive, to be confident enough to listen. Encouraging men to dig deep within themselves, Justin helps us reimagine what it means to be man enough and in the process what it means to be human.

©2021 Justin Baldoni (P)2021 HarperCollins Publishers

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No Matter your Gender this is a MUST!

No matter your gender I think this book is a must. A beautiful guide on how to be a better human!

4 people found this helpful

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Honest, brave, and timely.

Man Enough is honest, brave, and timely. This exploration of masculinity tackles body image, shame, insecurities, and a myriad of other topics that boys and men are traditionally discouraged from talking about. This book helps make space for understanding, empathy, honest conversation and the idea that you are enough. It is a must read.

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Stop reading my review and START READING HIS BOOK

Breathtaking. I’m grateful that audible allows you to speed up the recording, because I just couldn’t eat this book up fast enough! I felt transformed into a way of thinking that, as a woman, I had no idea existed. I’ve always been hard hearted towards men that don’t show up emotionally, but hearing Justin’s memoirs taught me that under every man’s armor, there is a little boy in there longing to be loved. As someone who’s grown up in a household of self-sufficient women, it’s refreshing to hear Baldoni’s perspective on the value that women offer this world, without his intention being to belittle or undermine the male gender as a whole. We can all do better at loving ourselves and loving others. This book is a safe space to learn, ponder, and humbly decide what we as individuals can do to become the best versions of ourselves from the inside out. Now seriously, stop looking at reviews and download the dang book!! You won’t regret it.

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IMPACTFUL & ENLIGHTENING

⭐⭐⭐⭐💫

Man Enough: Undefining My Masculinity by Justin Baldoni is a book that benefits all, not just men.

If you have males that you love and care about in your life, they need to read this book. Whether they are in high school, college, newlywed, or beyond; please get a copy of this book in their hands and encourage them to read and absorb these words.

As a mother to two sons I have often found myself at a loss for words or understanding when it comes to their ever evolving physical and emotional needs, wants, and turmoils; but in Justin's book he shines light on the fact that really, men aren't so different from women. Not when you truly look beyond all the layers of how society has told them them to think, feel, and act.

This book isn't about tearing down masculinity. It's about giving boys and young men the "okay" and support to truly be who they are inherently at their core; human. To lift them up and give them courage to say screw the narrative forced upon generations before them and truly believe that they are enough just as they are. That we are all enough.

I listened to this book via audio and felt Justin did a fantastic job. You can feel how much these words mean to him and the personal stories allow for an easily relatable read, no matter your gender.

My 14 year old son is currently reading my physical copy of the book and I plan on buying a copy for him to have so that he may visit these words in the future as he continues to mature into the man he will one day become. He is taking it in slowly, giving himself time to digest all the wonderful morsels and says that thus far he is really enjoying it.

I will be getting a third copy for my other son as well, but at just 9 years of age he still has a little while before I suggest that he reads it. In the meantime, I will take what I have read and make an effort to be more mindful of the narrative that I put forth to him of what it means to be man enough.

3 people found this helpful

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More than a book

Justin has done the work. Let me clarify, Justin has taken surrendered the idea of following the traditional social norms of being a man, and has invited his fellow peers to search for answers to what’s it like to be a man. This book isn’t one that tells you you have to this a specific way. Honestly he could have called it “Why man?” Asking why is a common theme throughout the book and although it seems simple, it’s what helped him guide his head to his heart. There are too many priceless points to share and ones I most likely missed my first time through, so I’m here to tell you to take the leap and listen to the human experience. Now allow me to start the book over :)

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  • sk
  • 04-28-21

Truly a one of a kind book

What an incredible book. I’ve listened for several hours on book release day and have gained so much insight already. This book is so authentic and sincere and the author’s desire to create and perpetuate an important conversation is incredibly genuine. What a true inspiration.

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the world needs this

amazing and relevant. everyone needs to read this and think about what our society does to us all

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Wow!

This book will make you laugh, cry, think and feel all the feelings. I am buying this book for my two sons (20 and 22) and gifting it to them. They grew up with a not so present dad after our divorce when my youngest was 9 months old. So they only have my female perspective on life and what it is to be a good young man. I love my boys so much and I can only pray that they remember the good things I taught them and learn from mom’s very human mistakes. May they always know that they are “man enough” but most importantly that they are deeply and unconditionally loved and that they are “ENOUGH”. 💕🙏🏽💕

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I already can’t wait to read the next book. :)

This book is a reminder to me that sharing our story can change outlooks and impact the lives of those we’ll never meet. Thank you Justin for sharing your story, modeling authenticity, courage, humility and grace. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has a brother, son, father or male figure in their lives.

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A book for EVERYONE

Justin does an excellent job discussing the challenges that not just men face, but the challenges of humankind. This is a book of heart and vulnerability. Definitely worth the purchase!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Isabel Cole
  • 03-03-22

Thank you

Amazing audio book and so beautifully read.
Everyone needs to listen to this.
I’ll be passing the message on 🖤

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  • Charlotte.
  • 01-25-22

Everyone needs to read this

Phenomenal book, by a phenomenal human being. As a woman, this book made me understand so much - not just about men, but about our society, and the unobtainable expectations placed on everyone. It's helped me improve my relationships with the men in my life, and understand myself better. This is a must ready for anyone, whatever sex or gender you identify with. 11/10!

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  • Beatrice
  • 12-04-21

A rare glimpse into what it means to be a man

From a woman's perspective this is a rare glimpse into what it means to be a man and to grow up as one. We are surrounded by messaging and debates on what it means to be a woman, by feminist battles/issues/discourse, and I feel like I was lacking some of the context other side of the binary. This book gave me a first rare glimpse into manhood and I feel like it's helped me understand the men in my life better.

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  • Tanseli
  • 12-01-21

MUST READ

Thank you Justin Baldoni! My husband and I have listened to your book together and we have both laughed, cried and learned a lot AND I got to understand him better and he got to understand himself better too. Super valuable book for anyone to read! Thank you so much for your honesty and openness and vulnerability! Super well done!! Thank you for sharing all this and letting us learn from and with you!

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  • Xan
  • 08-20-21

Not my cup of tea - Religious content

I bought this audiobook because I was interested in expanding my knowledge of the effects of traditionally defined masculinity in society. Even though it started well with some good examples of his personal life and some scientific research, unfortunately, Justin Baldoni scratches only the surface of the subject and insists in referring to his personal religious beliefs and quotes to get any point across. The religious monologue goes to new highlights when he talks about him finding his family in after life paradise and living happily ever after! Really?? This is almost an insult to my intelligence. For someone who was seeking to deep scientific explanations of the subject I was very disappointed and would not recommend.

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  • Jojo
  • 05-08-21

A must read for everyone!

An incredible book. Listening to the author read it so enthusiastically and emotionally makes the book even more special and powerful. This book really makes you think about yourself, society, social norms and so much more. It cover and looks at so many thing that we do not talk about or discuss enough. It also reminds you that you are enough as you are.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-03-21

He reminds us of the good in people

This book is insightful, profound, real, brave, and heartwarming. I would thoroughly recommend this book to anyone, regardless of gender, because Justin shares an important analysis of the human experience through his own battles. I was so sad to finish it so soon, and will definitely read it again. Amazing work.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-12-21

Deep. Real deep.

I had high expectations for this book after watching Justin's pre-launch interviews. In a way, the book wasn't what I expected. But maybe that's because I'm not a man? I really loved some of the chapters but lost interest over a few too. As I said, he goes deep, really deep into issues associated with masculinity and perhaps I lost interest a but because it was not relevant to me? Overall I WOULD recommend this book to others. Men AND women need to hear this book and decide for themselves, what does it mean to BE A MAN? Love you Justin.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-21-22

Amazing!

Thanks you Justin, such a brilliant collection of thoughts and for sharing your journey. Thoroughly enjoyed listening to it and your delivery, tears and all :)

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  • Nathan
  • 04-18-22

An enjoyable and thought-provoking listen

An honest and refreshing read that firstly explores (and then challenges) the expectations that men force on themselves to be 'enough'. Expectations that lead to isolation, insecurity, false-bravado, and overcompensation.

It's important to note that this book is not about discouraging masculinity, or beating-up on men, or generally virtue signalling. It's actually a book for men... that essentially says 'hey, all that stuff you don't talk about in case you seem less manly... yeah, we all do that... maybe give talking about it a try sometime'.

Justin discusses these topics with humour, insight, and a hearty helping of personal examples; and I found myself relating to a lot of his topics and examples on a deep level. I listened to the audiobook, at it was very much like having an honest conversation with a friend over a beer.

There were parts of the book that weren't for me - particularly some of the faith-based discussion; but these didn't detract from Justin's core messages.

Overall, an enjoyable and thought-provoking listen.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-15-22

Must read for all men from puberty into adulthood

This book talks about delicate topics, makes you question your own manhood and how you define masculinity. It is very well written and even better read. You can hear his emotion when talking about his wife and kids or when he feels deeply passionate about the subject, or when he feels vulnerable.
Throw away your doubts about this book and do yourself a favour.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-13-21

Man Enough

Thank you Justin for this wonderful insight of what it is like to be Man Enough. I have 2 teenage boys who I am raising and I can’t thank you enough for the raw insight of how to help them to believe in themselves and they are ENOUGH as they are!
Thank you from New Zealand. Love to you and your family. X

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  • Lucy
  • 08-21-21

Great read for everyone

Justin's candid and honest story with his masculinity has lessons for all of us. Whether you're a man, a woman, or a human raising new humans, there are lessons for everyone.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-04-21

Men Please Read

loved the book was a great listen, a must for every man out there. I can relate to this book and his stories. I have taken away so much from this book. Thank you Justin.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-22-21

Thank you Justin!!!

Thank you Justin for sharing your journey of life.
You have helped me on my journey of manhood and being a Dad, Husband and good Human.
With Love
Steve from Sydney Australia xo

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-17-21

life changing open heart writing

beautiful. open heart writing. lifts the lid on boys and mens worlds with raw sincerity. loved it!

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  • Christopher
  • 06-14-21

Man Enough is more than worthy of your time

Never have I reflected upon my own sense of masculinity more than after this book.