book cover of The Men Can\'t Be Saved

The Men Can't Be Saved

A novel by



“[Purkert is] a sharply funny observer of male foibles, 20-something angst, and the modern workplace.” —WASHINGTON POST


“I laughed more times than I can count . . . A phenomenal debut novel by one of my favorite writers.”

w York Times bestselling author of How the Word Is Passed


“Purkert’s writing is a gift and it shines through these pages.”

author of A Little Devil in America


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. He’s the agency’s hottest new star, or at least he wants his coworker crush to think so. But while he’s busy drooling over his future corner office, the walls crumble around him.


When his job lets him go, he can’t let go of his job. Unfortunately, one former colleague can’t let him go either: Robert “Moon” McCloone, a skeezy on-the-rise exec better suited to a frat house than a boardroom. Seth tries to forget Moon and rediscover his spiritual self; he studies Kabbalah with an Orthodox rabbi by day while popping illegal prescription pills by night. But with each misstep, Seth strays farther from salvation—though he might get there, if he could only get out of his own way.


In his debut novel, Purkert incisively peels back the layers of the male ego, revealing what’s rotten and what might be redeemed. Brimming with wit, irreverence, and soul-searching,
Men Can’t Be Saved is a startlingly original examination of work, sex, addiction, religion, branding, and ourselves.

Genre: General Fiction

Praise for this book

"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

"Ben Purkert is a magician with the pen. This is one of those unique novels that has you laughing on one page and wrestling with some of life's biggest questions on the next. A phenomenal debut novel." - Clint Smith

"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

"In this very funny, whip-smart novel, Purkert wields his narrator's ingenuous derangement like a scalpel, dissecting our current moment with masterful precision." - Antoine Wilson

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