I Can't Date Jesus by Michael Arceneaux

I Can't Date Jesus

Featured as one of Summer 2018’s most anticipated reads by the Los Angeles Times, Vogue, Vulture, Entertainment Weekly, ELLE, Buzzfeed, and Bitch Media.In the style of New York Times bestsellers You Can’t Touch My Hair, Bad Feminist, and I’m Judging You, a timely collection of alternately hysterical and soul‑searching essays about what it is like to grow up as a creative, sensitive black man in a world that constantly tries to deride and ...

Details I Can't Date Jesus

TitleI Can't Date Jesus
Release DateJul 24th, 2018
PublisherAtria / 37 INK
GenreNonfiction, Autobiography, Memoir, Writing, Essays, LGBT, GLBT, Queer

Reviews I Can't Date Jesus

  • Roxane
    There are stories that simply demand to be told and Michael Arceneaux’s is one such story. In I Can’t Date Jesus: Love, Sex, Family, Race, and Other Reasons I’ve Put My Faith in Beyoncé, Arceneaux writes from his life as a black gay man with an uncanny strength of conviction and such fine wit. The essays collected here reveal Arceneaux at his finest, as he grapples with the very things that shape our lives--faith, family, and finding a way...
  • Larry H
    3.5 stars here."It's often said that knowing who you are, or at the very least possessing a sneaking suspicion of such early in life, is a blessing. The people who share this sentiment need to write it on a piece of paper, ball it up, and then proceed to pour barbecue sauce all over it as they eat it. Early self-awareness is a blessing only if who you are comes with a support system and an education. If you don't have those, it's easy to find you...
  • Jenna
    When I saw the title of this book, before even reading the synopsis, I knew i had to read it. Anyone who can think up a title like I Can't Date Jesus: Love, Sex, Family, Race, and Other Reasons I've Put My Faith in Beyoncé deserves to have their book read. I'd never heard of Michael Arceneaux prior to this book, and so I wasn't familiar with his writing. He's hysterical! I really enjoyed reading this memoir; his sarcastic and dry humor made this...
  • Jennifer
    I Can't Date Jesus: Love, Sex, Family, Race, and Other Reasons I've Put My Faith in Beyoncé is a collection of essays written by Michael Arceneaux. Although Arceneaux is a seasoned writer, this is his first published book and it is filled with life experiences related to family, race, sexuality, religion, politics, culture, LGBTQ community...and yes, even Beyoncé. From childhood to adulthood, it's there. Honest, funny, sensitive, heartbreaking,...
  • Erin
    Contender for fave memoir title of 2018 Although not familiar with the work of Michael Arceneaux, I was intrigued to explore this collection of memoir essays. Even though this book didn't have me rolling on the floor with belly laughs, I enjoyed the feel of the book. As if, Michael Arceneaux, was sitting across from me in a cafe and pouring out his perspectives on the Catholic faith, his struggles with coming out to family and friends, thoughts o...
  • chantel nouseforaname
    Hilarious. Michael Arceneaux made me laugh out loud and feel those sad points with him where necessary. His writing style is hilarious and relatable. Thanks for putting me on to the term “Beytheist”- I now have a term for crazy people who don’t believe in our shared God! Sometimes, it was a little too much at points that became a where it came to talking about the rashes etc etc like I didn’t need to know that shit, but overall I Can’t ...
  • Taryn Pierson
    Michael Arceneaux was raised Catholic, and he has spent much of his life trying to reconcile his identity as a gay man with the faith of his childhood. He’s also an incisive cultural commentator when it comes to issues of race and class. This is a person who thinks deeply, who has analyzed his life and in this book offers up some of the conclusions he’s drawn and the steps he’s still taking to understand himself and his family. I love colle...
  • Latanya (CraftyScribbles)
    You need not be black, gay, or a man to enjoy the keen observations noted in Michael Arceneaux's book. However, if you are either or all three of these attributes, the better the ride. In his memoir, he digs into the daily nuances, joys, and hypocrisies granted in one's life as those attributes add spice. He knocks down hypersexual stereotypes placed upon gay men of color. He embraces his obsession with Beyonce. He faces the challenge of a religi...
  • Mara
    4/4.5 stars- The perspective of this memoir is one that I think is much needed and I would love to see more of: what does it look like to reckon with people and institutions that on some level don't want you, even when you have lingering love or affection from them? Michael Arceneaux grapples with these questions very thoughtfully on many levels: as a "recovering Catholic," as a gay child of a religious mother, as an adult child of an alcoholic a...
  • Patrick Hackett
    Honestly, this book read like a cross between a long-winded gchat conversation and a celebrity memoir. Being that the author is both not famous and not my friend, I really struggled to get through this one. Can’t recommend.
  • BookOfCinz
    I love a book with a great title, even when it is a little blasphemous. I Can't Date Jesus: Love, Sex, Family, Race and other Reasons I've Put My Faith In Beyoncé by Michael Arceneaux is a timely, relevant collection of essays that demands to be read.I was not familiar with Michael Arceneaux before picking up this book but in reading this book I felt like I got to know him a lot. This book, while it can be funny, tackles some uncomfortable top...
  • Erik
    In Michael Arceneaux's debut book "I Can't Date Jesus," he tackles topics ranging from dating to sex to family, race, and religion. In each instance, his conversations on these topics follow lines of thinking that are relevant to contemporary readers - queer and straight alike - and he, in many cases, make important contributions to queer writing on these topics.However, in almost every essay in this collection, Arceneaux's own writing style gets...
  • Kayla Brunson
    Thank you Atria Books for providing me with a copy for an honest review.I haven’t read anything by Michael Arceneaux before, but when I heard he was from Houston like me and saw the title I knew I wanted to read it. This was compared toYou Can't Touch My Hair: And Other Things I Still Have to Explain and I loved that book last year.This guy is hilarious as hell and he kept me laughing while reading. The style of the book feels as if we are havi...
  • Valerie
    “Some parts of my life are sad, but I am not a sad spirit.” So reads a line from the epilogue to I Can’t Date Jesus, a touching, honest, and highly entertaining collection of reflections from Michael Arceneaux, one of my favorite culture writers. I completed this book quite quickly as I was devouring it similarly to the way I often do writings by Arceneaux: with many an internal head nod, several audible chuckles, and constant reminders tha...
  • cat
    I love that he is telling the stories of his life - and I wanted to 5 star it for the fact that we NEED more black gay writers to tell the truths of their lives. Ultimately though, I just couldn't love the book even while I love the existence of the book. Conversational tone and tangent-based storytelling aside (hi! that's my style too!), it felt clunkily constructed and I never fully engaged with the way he told his story. Looking forward to see...
  • Caitlyn
    LOVED this book. Another unique and necessary voice to add to the LGBTQ+ canon of literature.
  • Bri (girlwithabookblog.com)
    I really thought I was going to go through all of 2018 only reading books written by women, but Michael Arcenaux's debut I Can't Date Jesus sounded too intriguing to ignore. Despite not reading any of Arceneaux's work before, I really enjoyed reading his memoir essays. He's a big shot in the journalism world, particularly known for writing from the gay and black POV, but you don't need to know his previous work to dive into this! Arceneaux brill...
  • Gabriella
    This was really cute! Don’t take it too seriously, and you should have a fun time with this one. I’m trying to stay brief, so I’ll keep my introduction to a sentence: Michael Arceneaux is witty, wordy, and weary of the foolishness he’s encountered outside of his native Houston, Texas.I say “wordy” since he often tries harder than he should with the run-on humor, and these attempts land too heavily. However, for every “okay, I get th...
  • Kate Kaput
    Arceneaux, a comedy writer, tells of growing up Black and gay in a religious Texas home. Though he knew from a young age that he was gay, he knew, too, that he couldn't reveal it to his family. At one point, his priest even suggested he enter the priesthood - but eventually, Michael fell away from the faith, moving to bigger cities, pursuing a writing career, & exploring both race, sexuality, & other elements of his identity in ways both poignant...
  • Lauren Murray
    2.5/5I think there's a great message here, but its a bit raunchy for what I was expecting to read. I appreciate Arceneaux's storytelling (such a compelling title), but not a huge fan of his voice as an author.
  • Lisa
    Arceneaux describes himself as David Sedaris if Sedaris' dad had gold teeth. I laughed so hard at much of his writing and loved how honest he was about himself. I will read all of his essays online. Mr. Arceneaux, can I buy you drinks next time you're in Houston?
  • Charlesia
    Laugh out loud funny! Arceneaux is a relatable, sharp, and consistent story-teller. I would have rearranged a few of the essays for a more cohesive reading experience but overall, I enjoyed this book and recommend it.
  • La
    I LOVED this book. It’s equal parts hilarious and heartbreaking and I barreled through it all in one sitting. Michael has a way of telling a story that makes you feel like you’re talking to a friend, and not being talked at- or worse- reading a Very Important Serious Thing. Reading I Can’t Date Jesus felt like stumbling into a serious conversation with a close friend over a bottle of wine that stretches into the wee hours. Read it! You’ll...
  • Jacqueline Ellis
    The author has an original and confident voice and point of view. There’s a deceptive lightness to his tone that helps magnify some complex issues. I plan on assigning the book in my upcoming Gender, Sexuality, and Culture course
  • Sammie
    Thank you to NetGalley and Atria books for an eARC in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.I went into this not knowing a thing about Michael Arceneaux. But that title ... I mean, how can you not pick it up?Since reading this, I've looked him up, and I'm glad. He's adorable and funny and has another book coming out, which I am for sure going to read.I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I started the book, but the essays were funny and sad a...
  • Kevin
    Michael Arceneaux's inspiring and delightful debut collection of autobiographical essays about growing up black and gay in Texas is alternately hilarious and touching. "This book is about unlearning every damaging thing I've seen and heard about my identity and allowing myself the space to figure out who I am and what that means on my terms," writes Arceneaux. Growing up in a home with a rage-prone father and religious mother, he kept his sexuali...
  • Erin
    What an incredible collection of essays. First and foremost, Arceneaux is hilarious. I actually laughed out loud multiple times while reading this book. I also love his frank, honest writing style. Two of my favorite essays were about his relationship with his father and his relationship to white people. His perspective on his father and his ability to contextualize their relationship in such an empathetic yet boundaried way was incredible. It ma...
  • Erin
    So, I had an epiphany about essay collections. I think normally people treat them as something you can slowly work your way through, dipping in and out as you go, because they are separate and not one long story, the way fiction is. But I think they ~are~ like fiction in the sense that you do need to read them all fairly close together in time because all of them are parts of a whole. There’s a flow there that you miss out on if you just do the...
  • beatricks
    Michael Arceneaux must have a great publicist. That, and a recommendation I do remember reading from Janet Mock (evidently a close friend of his), are the only reasons I can think of that this book even entered my consciousness. It occupies an awkward blind spot in subject matter: nothing to do with my life, nor so foreign that I have a lot to learn from it. To be sure, I think there are southern gay black men who were raised Christian who could ...
  • Erica
    It took me a little bit of time to get really into this, but once I did, I devoured it. I enjoy reading personal essays, and definitely laughed out loud reading a many. This is a great book to read if you are interested in the intersection of being black and gay, because I think it explains a lot to those who are unknowing. Frankly, that’s why everyone should read this book.And also because he calls people who don’t love Beyoncé “beytheist...