How Not To Be a Boy

Robert Webb / Memoir / Non-Fiction

Book cover

UK Publisher

Canongate Books

Don’t Cry; Love Sport; Play Rough; Drink Beer; Don’t Talk About Feelings

But Robert Webb has been wondering for some time now: are those rules actually any use? To anyone?

Looking back over his life, from schoolboy crushes (on girls and boys) to discovering the power of making people laugh (in the Cambridge Footlights with David Mitchell), and from losing his beloved mother to becoming a husband and father, Robert Webb considers the absurd expectations boys and men have thrust upon them at every stage of life.

Hilarious and heartbreaking, How Not To Be a Boy explores the relationships that made Robert who he is as a man, the lessons we learn as sons and daughters, and the understanding that sometimes you aren’t the Luke Skywalker of your life – you’re actually Darth Vader.


Quite simply brilliant. I (genuinely) cried. I (genuinely) laughed out loud. It's profound, touching, personal yet universal . . . I loved it.

- JK Rowling

Takes us deftly from hilarity to heart-stopping hurt . . . A truly great read, full of heart.

- Dawn French

A witty, honest coming-of-age story with a subtext that tackles masculinity and manhood. Webb has a storytelling skill many would kill for.

- Ian Rankin

A much-needed contribution to the vital conversation about the damage gender can do.

- Juno Dawson

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