Sunday, May 06, 2007

The Dangerous Book for Boys

A couple of weeks ago, I got an email from Andi Buchanan asking me if I'd like to participate in one of Mother Talk's upcoming blog book tours. I scanned the list of books and immediately honed in on The Dangerous Book for Boys. Partly due to its most compelling title and partly due to the fact that Warren was desperately trying to buy it over a year ago. (It was only available in England at the time.)

When my copy arrived in the mail, Warren was so excited that it was several days before I was able to wrangle it away from him. As soon as I did, Satchel sidled up to me and said, "Can I look at it Mommy?"

And of course it wasn't long before Jiro wanted a crack at it too.

Soon Satchel was asking if we could grow crystals. Warren was planning to set up a battery making station in the kitchen. Jiro set his sights a bit higher--he wanted us to get started on a tree house.

The Dangerous Book for boys was written by two brothers, Conn and Hal Iggulden, who had always wished for such a book when they were younger. The book is hardback and looks like a treasure from a great grandparent's attic. With the perfect mixture of text, photographs, and illustrations, it covers everything from grammar to go-carts to girls. I have to say that as I flipped through I couldn't quite determine what, if any, order the book was in, but it didn't seem to matter as each page seemed to be more fascinating than the next. (Who knew that Navy ship flags actually transmitted secret messages? Or that invisible ink could be made from one's own urine?)

This afternoon, Satchel grabbed the book and some paper, and sat down at the kitchen table. He opened it up to page 2 ("The Greatest Paper Airplane in the World") and immediately started folding.

I was impressed, to say the least.

Warren (who I thought knew everything), Satchel (who can't even read yet), and Jiro (who is the epitome of dangerous), and me (a woman!) wholeheartedly endorse this book. I can't wait for the monkeys' reading skills to improve so that they can delve deeper into the book's contents. I totally expect to come home and find them discussing the world's greatest battles or constructing a bow and arrow. No doubt the book will become dog-eared, tattered, and possibly spineless. And I am 100% sure that the words "I'm bored" shall never leave the lips of a member of Team Oster ever again.

Here's a cute youtube video for the book and an interview with the authors. If you don't have the cash to buy one, or can't wait til Christmas when I plan to give one to everyone I know, check out the Harper Collins contest that includes 100 free books and badges.

Psst! What do you think the Dangerous Book for Girls should include? You know, in case I decide to write one someday...

1 comment:

Stephanie said...

Can girls not make paper airplanes and tree houses? Or are you looking for things like "applying eyeliner" and "inserting tampons"?

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