Announcing the Launch of Manvotionals: Timeless Wisdom and Advice on Living the 7 Manly Virtues

by Brett & Kate McKay on November 1, 2011 · 44 comments

in Blog

After a year of hard work, many all-nighters, and a few delays, we’re happy to announce the launch of our second book, The Art of Manliness Manvotionals: Timeless Wisdom and Advice on Living the 7 Manly Virtues!

Manvotionals: Timeless Wisdom and Advice on Living the 7 Manly Virtues is a collection of the best advice ever written down for men. From the philosophy of Aristotle to the success books of the late 19th and early 20th centuries to the speeches and essays of leaders like Theodore Roosevelt and Winston Churchill, the book contains the manly wisdom of the ages–a myriad of poems, quotes, and essays designed to inspire men to live life to the fullest and realize their complete potential as men. The book is divided into 7 Manly Virtues, and each chapter begins with an introduction by the authors and is packed with words of wisdom to help the reader understand the virtue and become inspired to live it.

The book is the product of hundreds of hours spent digging through all sorts of writings from the last 2,000 years. After turning over every possible rock, we selected what we felt to be the very best pieces about being a man, and then extracted the most vital marrow from those selections to create an anthology that is both readable and enjoyable and thought-provoking and stirring.

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To help you learn more about the book, here’s the lowdown on it in handy question/answer format.

Q. What are Manvotionals?

A. Manvotionals is a series we started on the site a few years ago where we publish inspiring poems and excerpts from speeches, literature, letters, and essays on what it means to be a man. They’re like non-religious devotionals for men. Hence the name, Manvotionals.

Q. Why did you decide to come out with a Manvotionals book?

A. Our first book, The Art of Manliness: Classic Skills and Manners for the Modern Man, centered on, as the name suggests, the practical how-to’s of being a man. But while having that kind of skill set is important, even more important is the development of a man’s mindset, the cultivation of the inner man. We thought a second book that focused on a man’s character would be a worthy follow-up to the first.

Q. Why an anthology?

A. There are a lot of men out there who believe that manliness is abstract and meaningless. By bringing together the voices of hundreds of men who lived centuries apart, we hoped to show that not only does true manliness mean something, its meaning has been consistent for thousands of years. The different voices come together to form a splendid mosaic of manhood.

Q. Who is this book for?

A. It’s for men in any situation in life: young or old, married or single, religious or not. The book can be enjoyed by boys and men from ages 12 to 92. Mom and sis will likely be sneaking peeks as well.

Q. Why should I read this book?

A. This book can offer your life direction and purpose, help you understand more about what it means to be a man, get you thinking about the kind of man you want to be, and inspire you to live your life to the fullest. I’m not a hype guy, and I don’t want to oversell it, but I really think it can help change your life.

Q. Are the Manvotionals in the book the same ones that have been published on the site?

A. Some favorites that were published early on on the site were included in the book, but 75% of the book consists of Manvotionals that have not been published on the site; some haven’t been reprinted anywhere else in a 100 years or more. We’ve been holding on to some of the best stuff we’ve come across, as we wanted the book to provide fresh inspiration to our regular, loyal readers.

Q. Should I buy the print edition or the eBook version?

A. I love my Kindle and mostly read eBooks myself. But I strongly recommend purchasing the print edition of the book. The book has 75 cool vintage illustrations and a great layout and design which gets a little lost in the eBook version. This is a book that feels very nice to hold in your hand.

Q. I’m planning on getting a copy for myself along with some for my friends, but I was going to buy them closer to Christmas. Is there any reason I should buy the book today?

A. Heck, we appreciate someone buying a copy any old time. But if you’d like to help support AoM as much as possible, we’d love for you to buy your copies today. A big launch day can attract attention and help bookstores decide to stock the book on their shelves.

If that still doesn’t convince you, we’re also throwing in some bonuses for those who buy this week. See section below.

Q. I’m buying copies for all my friends and family. Who else should I gives copies to?

A. I think it would be pretty cool to buy a copy to give to your local public or high school library, so guys in your community can check it out for free. If you’re a doctor, dentist, mechanic, or barber, you can buy a copy for your waiting area. Buy a copy or several for your frat house or church’s men’s group. Or buy a box full and drive around town throwing them out the window for men to find and yelling, “Long live manliness!”

Q. Besides buying a book today, what can I do to help support and get the word out about this book?

A. We don’t have much of an ad budget to promote the book, so we need your help to spread the word about Manvotionals. Here are a few ways you can help:

Q. Okay, I’m still on the fence about buying a book. What can you say to push me over?

First of all, it’s only about $10. That’s the price of a movie or a couple of Starbucks’ coffees. You can probably buy the book by cashing in the coins sitting in the jar on your dresser. Or think of it as only an hour and a half of work at a minimum wage job and in return you get several hours of reading enjoyment. A great return on investment.

Second, it’s a way to give back to AoM. The site is coming up on its fourth birthday, and we’ve published 1,235 interesting, inspiring, entertaining, top-quality free articles in that time. Keeping the site 100% free has been a matter of pride for us. We’ve tried to run the site with a lot of integrity and to let the articles be accessed by as many folks as possible. So if an article on the site has ever provided you with inspiration, direction, or enjoyment, I hope you’ll consider giving back by buying a book today.

Thanks so much for the support everybody. We deeply and truly appreciate it!

barnes and noble amazon indie bound powells Books a Million

barnes and noble amazon indie bound powells Books a Million

{ 44 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Walter November 1, 2011 at 8:08 am

I didn’t even hear what you had to say, I was struck by your awesome moustache.

2 Daren Redekopp November 1, 2011 at 8:48 am

You had me at hello.

3 Chris November 1, 2011 at 8:51 am

I purchased this on my Kindle (on the Amazon UK site) recently and have already finished it. A truly excellent book, I found it hard to stop reading it. Clearly a lot of research, thought and sweat went into the book. Thanks for writing it!

4 Marcus November 1, 2011 at 9:22 am

Bully for you! Hopefully Barnes and Noble has it in stock since I’ll be by one today. You might want to try talk radio for promoting your book. I don’t agree with the neocons much since I consider myself a Russell Kirk or Ron Paul conservative- though most of them say they favor Retroculture. You might want to send Mr. Dennis Prager at KRLA radio a copy of your book, and he might be able to interview you soon. I’m hoping you’d get on during his Ultimate Issues hour, since Manvotionals definately qualifies. Plus you can probably talk to him in Latin for fun since he speaks about a dozen languages (I know you had to take Latin for Classics&Letters). Then hopefully the rest of Salem News Radio will interview you. Maybe Fox Radio will to. Not sure aout NPR, but we sure are living in strange times, so lots of weird things can happen.
Do you think you’ll ever have a hardcover collectors edition? I love real books and don’t really like reading on electronic screens.

5 James November 1, 2011 at 9:52 am

Ordered an Ebook version yesterday, looking forward to getting a chance to start digging into it in the next day or two.

6 B.Beck November 1, 2011 at 9:57 am

I just got my six ordered. These are going to be great gifts. Thanks Brett!

7 Brendan November 1, 2011 at 10:16 am

I pre-ordered mine in August (from B&N). But it says it’s not expected to ship until November 9th >_<

8 Nate November 1, 2011 at 10:30 am

I’m not sure whether I’ll buy, but if I do I would want you to get the highest doller-per-book you could. Which vendor nets you the highest return? Is there any way of skipping the middleman and buying directly from you?

9 Jamie Oswald November 1, 2011 at 10:37 am

Would this book be appropriate for my 11 year old son?

10 Esen November 1, 2011 at 11:51 am

Ordered it today to ship it to The Netherlands in combination with The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt. Expected delivery: Between 1 and 21 of December. Just in time before Christmas ;)

11 Jeff November 1, 2011 at 12:37 pm

Esen – Order Theodore Rex and Colonel Roosevelt as soon as you can, because when you finish The Rise of TR you’re not going to want to wait for the rest of the story. These three biographies are as excellent as any I’ve ever read. Enjoy!

12 Robert November 1, 2011 at 12:42 pm

Preordered the book off Amazon and received it yesterday. Seriously considering buying two more copies and giving them for Christmas gifts, but not sure anyone in my family would take them seriously or enjoy them. Might just order one or two more for any future sons I might have. I can’t think of a much better thirteenth birthday gift for a boy than a set of the Art of Manliness books.

13 Andrew November 1, 2011 at 12:51 pm

Pre-ordered mine as soon as the pre-order was available and should be getting it today or tomorrow. I can’t wait! I’ll probably be ordering a few more for gifts soon.

14 Bruce Egert November 1, 2011 at 1:08 pm

I just received the book via delivery. Content and layout are both impressive and inviting. Will write back when I finish reading it with my review.

Congratulations on your book !

15 James Dennard November 1, 2011 at 2:56 pm

Ordered my copy from Barnes & Noble today. Looking forward to getting into it.

16 Eric November 1, 2011 at 2:56 pm

I have been waiting for this for months! Just ordered my copy. Thank you for putting this together; can’t wait to dig into it.

17 Ray Baker November 1, 2011 at 3:34 pm

I’ve got the first book, and read it twice I liked it so much! Can’t wait to get my hands on this one too! Got to be the best “read” of the year! Congrats Brett on the new one!

18 Melphisto November 1, 2011 at 3:53 pm

FYI — since I wondered what the so-called “Seven Manly Virtues” are, as part of trying to decide whether or not I want to read this book, I found them listed and figured I’d share: “This book holds the answers. To master the art of manliness, a man must live the seven manly virtues: Manliness, Courage, Industry, Resolution, Self-Reliance, Discipline, Honor.”

Sounds about right. ;)

19 Esen November 1, 2011 at 6:57 pm

Jeff – Thanks for the suggestion, you make me really curious now! Unfortunately, as a student, I’m on a tight budget. Those books would make a nice christmas present though . Best wishes

20 John Thomas November 1, 2011 at 7:31 pm

Book just arrived via amazon. Cant wait to read it!

21 Mike D. November 1, 2011 at 10:14 pm

Woohoo, the new book is finally out! Brett I was wondering if you are going to sell these as autographed copies like you did your first book?

22 Mark L. November 1, 2011 at 11:17 pm

I just ordered the book today and I a looking forward to receiving it. I came to this site about a week ago and have found it to be a breath of fresh air. It has been a real life changer for me so far. Thank you.

23 Carlito November 2, 2011 at 12:22 am

Anyone from Canada ordered the book?’s Manvotionals page indicates “Usually ships within 5 to 8 weeks.” Will it really take that long?

24 Tom G. November 2, 2011 at 1:33 am

Just ordered mine, and picked up a copy of the first AoM book as a birthday gift for a good friend (whom I also introduced to the AoM site just a few weeks ago). Thanks for all your hard work, Brett + Kate, and congratulations on the newest publication!

25 Brandon November 2, 2011 at 2:00 am


I would say most definitely yes. More adult-based as in adult tasks, goals, etc but there should be nothing risque in them as far as I know.

26 Al November 2, 2011 at 4:09 am

HI Brett Pre ordered in April… now just have to wait for stock to arrive can’t wait to get into it.

27 Manly November 2, 2011 at 4:12 am

Out in Australia we actually had a whole town named after us. ‘Man Town’ is the nickname for Manly in Sydney. And the place name arose quite some time ago – named after a very masculine local spotted by a visiting colonial ship from the homelands. That was a long time ago in fact – so much so that we are now the number 1 visted/ holiday beach in Australia. And the beach is a fine one we can assure you (no pun intended).

We like to think we are motivated too … being Manly ain’t easy.

28 Brett McKay November 2, 2011 at 4:46 am

Thanks for the awesome support everybody!


An 11 year old could definitely understand some of the selections, but some of the more philosophical ones would likely be a little heavy. And no, nothing risque in the book, although I think there is a “damn” and “hell” in some of the selections from the members of the Band of Brothers. Overall, I’d say the book would be better introduced in the later teen years, but it really depends on the maturity of the boy.


It doesn’t matter where you buy the book, as we get the same small cut regardless, since our cut is based on the wholesale price all booksellers pay. We do make more when we sell them directly, and we may do that next month (@Mike D. too).

29 Geoff November 2, 2011 at 1:51 pm

Sweet stache’!

30 Gerhard November 2, 2011 at 3:15 pm

Hi Brett,
Love the site and would like to purchase a copy of the book.
I’m from Cape Town, South Africa. How does it work?

31 Edgar A. Uy November 2, 2011 at 3:31 pm

Hi Brett,
Your work has been invaluable to me over the years and this is the first time you’ve asked for something in return, so of course I will purchase!

32 Sebastian November 2, 2011 at 6:07 pm

I will defiantly buy this book.Thank you for putting in the work. I also just picked up The Bo0k of M@n by another author. They seem very similar from their descriptions. What would you say are the major differences?

33 Sebastian November 2, 2011 at 7:03 pm

That should read definitely. I apologize and blame it on my mustache. I do thank you for introducing me to Theodore Roosevelt. I have been devouring the Morris biographies.

34 Ken F. November 3, 2011 at 2:00 am

Ordered mine yesterday from Amazon. I’ve been looking forward to this book for quite some time! Perusing AoM almost feels like a privilege at times. Thanks Brett and Kate!

35 Jim November 3, 2011 at 8:50 pm

Just bought the book Brett . I’m a huge fan of the site and I’m sure it will be great. Thank you and Good Luck !

36 MAX from Blog Homme November 4, 2011 at 10:19 am

This book is a great idea – This is sort important for men to keep the right direction and take their space in the world!

I wish you all the success possible with this book !

37 David Y November 4, 2011 at 6:26 pm

My copy arrived today. Can’t wait to start reading it.

38 Shawn G November 5, 2011 at 10:03 am

Purchased mine yesterday.

39 Aniruddha November 5, 2011 at 10:06 pm

Purchased mine…Even though I have a Kindle, I wanted to read the print version hence ordered that…Can’t wait…

40 Abraham November 6, 2011 at 6:16 pm

Upon reading it, my co-worker saw the book and we both discovered that we were Art of Manliness fans, suffice to say, I loved the book so much, despite reaching only the 12th page, that I had convinced him to purchase his own copy! I’m grateful that I’ve found this website!

41 Jared November 7, 2011 at 1:48 am


42 Mark Schäperkötter November 8, 2011 at 3:04 pm

Dear Kate and Brett, just delivered my copy of ‘Manvotionals’.
Congratulations on putting out (what at first glance looks to be) a great book.

(Nice touch that the ‘wrinkles’ used on the cover of ‘The Art of Manliness’ to make it look worn are the same as those on ‘Manvotionals’, only upside-down).

I only flipped through it, but I’m sure it will give me many hours of reading pleasure and will teach me a thing or two.

Best regards,
Mark Schäperkötter

43 Michael Lupia November 8, 2011 at 8:44 pm

Ordering some copies from Amazon right now. AoM is my favorite website by far, and your hard work to put this together is both shared and appreciated! I’m excited to be a part of the community!

44 Ben November 9, 2011 at 11:58 am

When will this be available in stores? I’ve checked Barnes and Noble, and they currently do not have any copies available in my area.


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