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Extended Audio Sample Iron John: A Book about Men Audiobook, by Robert Bly Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,462 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Robert Bly Narrator: Richard Ferrone Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: December 2015 ISBN: 9781456124045
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In this deeply learned book, poet and translator Robert Bly offers nothing less than a new vision of what it is to be a man.

Bly’s vision is based on his ongoing work with men and reflections on his own life. He addresses the devastating effects of remote fathers and mourns the disappearance of male initiation rites in our culture. Finding rich meaning in ancient stories and legends, Bly uses the Grimm fairy tale “Iron John,” in which the narrator, or “Wild Man,” guides a young man through eight stages of male growth, to remind us of archetypes long forgotten-images of vigorous masculinity, both protective and emotionally centered.

Simultaneously poetic and down-to-earth, combining the grandeur of myth with the practical and often painful lessons of our own histories, Iron John is a rare work that will continue to guide and inspire men—and women—for years to come.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Important and timely.”

    New York Times

  • “A brilliantly eclectic written meditation…An invisible contribution to the gathering public conversation about what it means to be male—or female.”

    Washington Post

  • “[A] marvelous folktale of resonant, many-layered meanings…For many men capable of responding imaginatively to allegory and myth, this will be an instructive and ultimately exculpating book.”

    Library Journal

  • “A wise and healing book full of fresh insights, Bly’s odyssey will help men grapple with identity, fatherhood, relationships and such crises as addiction and divorce.”

    Publishers Weekly

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Hburke727 | 2/15/2014

    " This book arrived for me of its own accord, and with its reading a connection to the mythological, eternally masculine has been consciously reestablished. I am grateful for writers like Bly who strive to open such fundamental, though all-too-often cobwebbed doors. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Jeffrey | 2/11/2014

    " This was one of those books that was recommended to me, and has been a disappointment. The flow of the book, and the way the author attempts to connect anecdotes and additional outside source material to support his views (which are poorly articulated as well) make for a very disjointed essay. I am finally giving up on it after a restart, and 125 pages. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 SmokingMirror | 2/7/2014

    " Just so my friends don't think I rated this book unthinkingly--I had some deep reservations about some of the conclusions of this book. In fact, I think that the book "Hammering Hot Iron" is a better book overall, but "Iron John" raised the questions first, and couched them in such a way that I found coming to grips with them very engaging. Recommended to those who already wonder if they might like it. Remember, it doesn't have to exactly underscore your personal philosophy in order to be helpful; questions can be better than answers. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jeremy Neal | 2/1/2014

    " Amazing and poetic. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sandra Hurlbert | 1/25/2014

    " I like Robert Bly. I think he would be a great guy to have as a good friend of one's parents. This book is an interesting read and sheds some perspective on the other half of the population. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Hannes | 1/15/2014

    " more about the experience of being a man "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Milkman3367 | 1/8/2014

    " Bly makes many interesting observations on the state of the American male, but some of them are confusing to the reader as they tend to be random thoughts which are loosely connected to ancient mythologies. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sara | 12/28/2013

    " This book is so jam packed with information from different eras in history and every possible culture you can think of. Naturally I fell asleep every ten pages, but this is definitely a 5 star good read! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Brandon | 12/4/2013

    " I love the way Bly talks about things, he goes into a myth with such precision and yet with so much poetry, he brings it home on many levels, and leaves you thinking about many things. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mark Powell | 12/4/2013

    " There's primieval about this book and well-timed for now! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Richard Crookes | 11/25/2013

    " Highly recommended read for men and women interested in our cultural and social imprinting and looking for ways to remove it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rick | 11/17/2013

    " Every man should read this powerful book. Robert Bly, a master poet, provides tremendous insight into our modern society by using the Iron John fairy tail (which was initially written thousands of years ago) - it's a masterpiece, worthy of rereading every couple of years. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Frank Butry | 11/15/2013

    " One of my favorites. It is a in depth look into the modern male psyche. I wonder why the youth of today is so screwed up, and this book explained it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Scubabob | 6/24/2013

    " True! All true!! Damn you Bly! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Scott Yelton | 3/10/2013

    " Dudes (especially dudes)... read this book. Empower men everywhere! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Brian | 11/24/2012

    " So far I've found a lot of good points in this book about the way our society views men and maleness. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Frank Marcopolos | 9/3/2012

    " Incredible meditation on what men have lost in modern society, and how we can get it back. Amazing book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bill Baker | 3/25/2012

    " Every man should read this and is the perfect graduation present from Father to son. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Denise | 3/1/2012

    " Deep and poetically written, about masculinity in mythology and fairy tales. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Timothy Takach | 2/6/2012

    " I liked this and what Bly has to say about contemporary man. I enjoyed the 1st third the best, when he discusses man's relationship with his Father and also his children. I also enjoyed reading about the different places in mythological history where "Iron John" shows up. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 David | 1/26/2012

    " A very important book for understanding the ritual sense of maturity we have lost in modern society. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Richard | 1/24/2012

    " One of the most truly ridiculous books I have read; I wish my copy were not in storage so I could copy out the passage about "father water" that just made me laugh out loud it was so ridiculous. "

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About the Author
Author Robert Bly

Robert Bly is an American poet, author, activist, and leader of the mythopoetic men’s movement, most famous for Iron John: A Book About Men, which spent sixty-two weeks on the the New York Times bestseller list. In 1968 he won the National Book Award for Poetry for his collection, The Light Around the Body.

About the Narrator

Richard Ferrone, an Audie Award winner, has consistently received high praise from critics and fans alike for his audiobook performances for over twenty years. He has performed on and off Broadway and in regional theaters. His television appearances include Law & Order, Against the Law, Guiding Light, and One Life to Live.