Pre-Order: The Men Can't Be Saved, Available 8/1/23

“Grappling with shifting definitions and expectations of masculinity, this fractured hero’s journey navigates a transgressive road trip in pursuit of validation, identity, and maybe even a chance at redemption. This sprawling ego study explores and refines what it means to be a good person in a nihilistic world.” ―Steven Warren, WORD Bookstore, NJ

The Men Can't Be Saved is an experience that transcends the act of reading fiction. It is an indictment, a call to self-examine, and ask questions, but it manages this while still being playful,  lighthearted, and generous. What I love most about Purkert's writing—across genres—is that it finds a perfect line between a voice that is confident, but also grounding itself in the realities of uncertain living. That is a gift, and it shines through these pages.” Hanif Abdurraqib, author of A Little Devil in America

“Funny, witty, and incisor-sharp, Purkert nails down the hypocrisies of modern masculinity and capitalism with the graceful hand of a poet. This novel says so much so well about the absurd moment in which we, grudgingly, live.” Alexandra Kleeman, author of Something New Under the Sun

“Ben Purkert's The Men Can't Be Saved is a work of wit and timely power. Faith and modernity, capitalism and masculinity, sex and identity—this novel has it all, and gets away with it. The style and the intellect herein mark the coming of a major new talent.” Darin Strauss, author of The Queen of Tuesday

“A brilliant skewering of modern-day masculinity. Wildly gripping, charmingly funny, bone-hard, and real. Purkert is the kind of writer whose work I’ll follow anywhere.” Kaveh Akbar, author of Martyr!


A rollicking debut novel that tackles a haunting question: What do our jobs do to our souls?

Seth is a junior copywriter whose latest tagline just went viral. But this professional triumph won’t fix his personal life—his coworker crush won’t be seen with him, and his only comfort is in pills.

When his job lets him go, he can’t let go of his job. Thankfully, one former colleague can’t let him go either: Robert “Moon” McCloone, a skeezy on-the-rise exec better suited to a dorm room than a boardroom. When Seth gets taken in by an overeager Orthodox rabbi, he tries to forget Moon and replace his professional ambitions with higher purpose—but is he only digging himself deeper?

In his debut novel, Purkert incisively explores two kinds of toxic masculinity: The guys who see no problem with their bad behavior, and those who don’t see it as bad at all. Brimming with wit, irreverence, and soul-searching, The Men Can’t Be Saved is a startlingly original examination of work, religion, sex, drugs, and ourselves.



About the Author

Ben Purkert is the author of the poetry collection For the Love of Endings. His work appears in The New Yorker, the Nation, and the Kenyon Review, among others. He is the founder of Back Draft, a Guernica interview series focused on revision and the creative process. He holds degrees from Harvard and New York University, and he currently teaches at Rutgers.


To get your personalized copy, you must order by 6:00 PM ET, Tuesday July 18, 2023

Orders after July 18 will be signed but cannot be guaranteed a personalization

  • Please note the personalization request in the comments box

  • Please note that if you do not indicate anything in the comments box, Ben will sign your book, but there will be no personalization.



Pre-Order Now Badge
The Men Can't Be Saved: A Novel By Ben Purkert Cover Image
ISBN: 9781419767135
Availability: Coming Soon - Available for Pre-Order Now
Published: The Overlook Press - August 1st, 2023

“Purkert’s writing is a gift and it shines through these pages.”—HANIF ABDURRAQIB
A knockout debut novel that tackles a haunting question: What do our jobs do to our souls?
Seth is a junior copywriter whose latest tagline just went viral.