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What's On Your Man's Bookshelf?

What’s the male counterpart to chick lit?
I want the name of the genre for lighthearted, humorous books with a modern, romantic twist written by men for men.  If there isn’t one, there should be.
Why? To level the playing field.
I detest the word chick. I find it demeaning, derogatory and degrading.  Who came up with the term chick lit? (Feel free to clue me in.) They couldn’t come up with a nicer name? No, probably not one that rhymed—sort of. I’d rather be called a bitch than a chick. At least bitch sounds smart.

(Disclaimer: I have nothing against chick lit books, writers or the people who read chick lit. They are immensely popular among females. I’m female, but apparently an abnormal one. Just ask my husband.)

At least I don’t think I’ve read a book that’s considered chick lit. Let me double check the books on my desk: Medical Dictionary, 1000 Voices, Webster’s Dictionary of Quotations, Horticulture as Therapy, Horticultural Therapy Methods, the Southern Living Garden Book, Reading Lolita in Tehran, 2011 Writer’s Market, 1001 Gardens You Must See Before You Die and Peace Like a River. Nope. Definitely abnormal.
Back to my man genre name issue.
What about Hunk Junk? Nah, we already have that: porn.
Boy Lit? Uh-uh. Too much like high teenagers.

Dude Food. As in food for the brain? Not a good fit. This genre is not meant to be intellectually stimulating.

I’m stumped. I’m going to take a look at my husband’s bookshelf for inspiration. The books lined up on his desk are: Building Findable Websites, Mastering CSS with Dreamweaver, PHP Solutions, My SQL, Joomla!, PHP & MySQL, Dreamweaver CS4 with CSS, Ajax, and PHP and Compost.

Holy crap.

I don’t know what my husband’s reading but it’s not lighthearted, humorous or romantic. These books are written by men for men (mostly.)  I am relieved RJ has that composting book to broaden his horizon.

Perhaps there isn’t a need for a male version of chick lit. Who would read it besides women? There certainly isn’t a need in my house. The only male genre necessary here is Man Tech.

4 Comment count
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I think

I'm not sure about now, but in my younger days, you could find most young men engrossed in Louis L'Amour Westerns. Just tossing out my 2 cents ;)


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Sorry for the delay in my response. I was without my computer for three days. I had software issues...actually Windows 7 updates that caused a glitch opening Word. Horrors, a writer without Word. My husband worked on my computer issues for two days and finally reinstalled Windows 7.  

How could I forget Louis L' Amour. My brother also had Mickey Spillane Novels, which I swiped from his room as a teenager. I wonder if the young men (teens, early twenties) still read these books? Is Sci Fi their version of Chick Lit? 

Any snow in Castle Rock?


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I'm guessing that chick lit

I'm guessing that chick lit is a play on 'chick flick', which I presume due to its movie-related theme, assonance, alliteration and rhyming, was coined by Daily Variety, possibly around the era of 'Love Story'.

I strongly recommend to you 'The Complete Bitchy Bitch', by Roberta Gregory. It's quite excellent. Sort of like chick lit but much more realistic, painful, and funny. I had the pleasure of meeting Gregory a few years ago. Also grab a copy of Jackie Collins' 'The Bitch', which probably qualifies as early chick lit and will serve to confuse people who look at your bookshelf. I haven't read that one, though, so I can't recommend it.

What kind of light reading do you enjoy?

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Chick Lit Ala Flick


Thank you for your comments and clarification about The Daily Variety. Can chick lit can also be attributed to the Hollywood Bible-ette of who, what, when, where and why?

I'll give The Complete Bitchy Bitch a shot. I read a few Jackie Collins books in the eighties or early nineties. I can picture Jackie on the back jacket with big jewels and bigger sequins. Definitely light reading but I'm not a big fan.

As for current light reading...many of my book clubs' selections are books I would not normally choose to read: Hannah's List by Debbie Macomber and Handle With Care by Jodi Picoult. The club is fascinated with Jodi Picoult. We read at least two of her books a year. The fascination ends with me.

My favorite author is James Lee Burke but he's not exactly light reading. I loved Erma Bombeck. Dave Berry and Andy Rooney are almost in her league.