Good books for boys

21 Jul 2007 11:07 am

Last night close to midnight I went to the local bookstore to get the latest Harry Potter book. My daughter, son-in-law, sister, two nieces and nephew were also out to experience the Harry Potter excitement. It was huge in our city. Lines of people wrapped all over the store and outside into the parking lot. Children and adults were in on the action. I saw kids dressed as characters such as Luna Lovegood. I saw quite a few of my former art students at the party too. It’s really quite thrilling that so many children and their parents are like the dockworkers in the eighteen hundreds who awaited the next installment of Charles Dickens.

I had been staying away from the internet all week because I didn’t want the experience spoiled by leakers such as the New York Times. At the bookstore they were giving away Harry Potter posters as well as other things. A sticker they were giving away said, Snape is loyal. But now that I am on page ten of the book I am wondering, loyal to whom?

I will be laying about today, reading J.K. Rowling’s seventh in the series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows. I won’t read it in a rush because I want to take in every word.

03 Jun 2007 12:37 am


My husband grew up reading books like the one above, The Boy’s Book of Battle Lyrics by Thomas Dunn English. It was published in 1885 and I found it recently in our bookshelves.

It’s described as A collection of verses illustrating some notable events in the history of the United States of America, from the Colonial Period to the outbreak of the Sectional War.

It’s not The Dangerous Book for Boys and will not be found in a school library today, (more’s the pity) but it demonstrates that at one time, manliness, courage, patriotism, historical knowledge and poetry were considered important essentials for bringing up successful young men.

It’s doubtful The Hornblower Series would be found in school libraries either but that wonderful series of stories about Horatio Hornblower by C.S. Forester is among my husband’s favorite books of his youth. The stories appealed to the swashbuckler in his soul.

I am purchasing The Dangerous Book for Boys for my nephews because it’s the kind of book that will appeal to them. They are the kind of boys, who, when they decided they wanted a basketball goal, built one for themselves. They love action and challenges and never find anything like that at school.

Many boys in public schools today are either ignored by their teachers or sent to the principals’ office when they get antsy in class. Girls are the preferred class because they very rarely stick paperclips into erasers, make paper airplanes out of their homework or do any of the things that used to be considered normal behavior for boys but is now used as evidence of their “hyper-activity.”