Palooka: 12 Rounds to Fatherhood
PALOOKA: 12 Rounds To Fatherhood addresses the millennial man’s desire to raise a family, dissecting the modern male identity through the lens of in-vitro fertilisation (IVF). His hilarious, raw and deeply personal account of the process — “one prolonged uppercut to the scrotum” — reveals the silent blows of infertility on the male psyche.
The book is must-have armour for men and women going through assisted reproduction treatments, IVF doctors trying to mentally prepare patients, and anyone yearning to be a parent.
IVF leads him and his wife Alicia through months of continuous medical scrutiny and ordeal including the near-death of his wife, forcing him to confront his identity as a partner and father-to-be.
He confronts issues around his childhood and family, toxic masculinity, and his own estrangement from his father, as he fights through round after round of medical ambiguities, bad news, and self-doubt about the quality of his ejaculate. As he gets up after being beaten to the ground again and again, he finds himself returning to his role models: history’s legendary boxers who never quit, and fought to win.
“Infertility affects people all over the world, from all backgrounds, no matter how well you eat, or how often you go to the gym,” he notes. “There’s nothing shameful about it, and you really shouldn’t be ashamed to talk to someone about it if you want to. In turn, if someone tries to talk to you about it, then, you know, don’t be a dick.”