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Sounds gorg. Daniel's birthday on 3rd of July so if not too pricey, pls buy for him.
You don't even have to wrap it. I know you like to give money, he likes to recieve money but now that he is a model, he is pretty flush!

Oooh, I really like how this one sounds, and in a household of boys where I am unfortunately outnumbered, this might come in handy. My guess is my almost 8 year old will love this for his birthday this year!

> “We're teaching little girls right off
> the bat that they're servants and baby
> factories and we're teaching boys that
> they get to have fun. Anybody see a
> teensy problem with that?”


Too long we've had denied boys the deliciousness of being boys, instead forcing them be second-rate girls. This book is wonderful, and I highly recommend it for all boys (and moms of boys!).

I think I will add this book to my husband's Amazon Wishlist. :-) Sounds like something he can do with the babes that will be good for all 3 of them.

Here is an excerpt from a review on Amazon and frankly I have to agree. I'm sure the book will sell better as something targeted to boys but looking at the TOC and some of the contents I have to think that a lot of girls would enjoy this book, too. There are no cavemen in the 21st Century. We all need a breadth of skills.

From Amazon:
Second, why "Boys"? "What's wrong with teaching our daughter how to tie a bowline, or make a paper airplane, or build a go cart?" my husband asked as he flipped through it. I guess the author, or publisher, is aware there's not much out there for parents of young boys and is trying to zero-in on that deserving niche. But assuming "The Dangerous Book for Girls" isn't coming out soon, the title is really, in today's world, just silly.

Spot on Tertia, spot on. I will be getting the book for my husband for father's day. (it's the quickest approaching gift-giving occasion, as Jake's (my son) birthday is not until September.

I did "boy" stuff as a kid. played war, climbed trees, played in dirt/mud I was the best tackle football player on the street. I completely befuddled my mother, who was a girly girl and longed for someone to play barbie and paper dolls with. My daughter loves shoes (at 18 months) - maybe she can play with my mom. Although, she plays with the bat/ball more than her baby doll.

Just because something is targeted/written to one gender does not mean that it automatically excludes the other. Jeebis. All the activities defined as "boy" - even though they weren't in a book didn't keep me from doing them. Just like the activities defined as "girl" didn't really interest me. We as parents should do the role-stretching exercises, if they are needed.

This is all so very very tired.

This is a brilliant book and we bought it for my sons birthday last year. My husband couldn't wait to read it!!!! He couldn't get to the shop fast enough to purchase said book. Boys will truly always be boys but I wouldn't have it any other way. Don't stress over the vanilla and beige of this world.....they help to make up the rainbow nation around the world. Another glass of wine is obviously needed (with the book of course)!

I don't often disagree with you but in this case I do - and completely agree with 21stCenturyMom about the title in particular.

I haven't read the book and I'm completely not PC, but as the mother of a girl I don't want to her to feel that there is ANY activity that is off limits or that she is not 'supposed' to do. Maybe I'm too sensitive about this but it still amazes me in this day and age how much we still stereotype our childrens' activities.

I'm trying very hard to make sure that my daughter can follow her interests whatever they may be and whether she wants to play with dollies and sequins or pirates and secret ink. I certainly don't want her to think that naval flags and first aid and tying knots are boy things. Yes, of course she could read this book, but from the very front cover this book is saying it's not really aimed at her and, maybe worse, that it's wrong for her to be interested. Nowadays I revel in girly things, but I remember very clearly as a child actively wishing I was a boy, which can't be too healthy.

Why couldn't they just call it the 'Dangerous Book for Kids' and target it at those KIDS who are interested in these topics (which may well end up being mostly boys)without making girls feel excluded? Or some boys feel inadequate?

I also note with interest that you're saving this for Adam when he gets older but not Kate.

I guess I do feel a little bit offended by the book (although it sounds very cool...I wish it was the dangerous book for children). I'll tell you why.

I live with a little girl who wants to be a boy. She thinks girl things are lame and boy things are exciting. She thinks boys get to do all the fun stuff. So we spend a lot of time trying to teach her that women are powerful and physical and exciting too. Despite the fact that she lives with three adult women, with various opinions on makeup and such, when asked, she will say that girls wear make up. Girls fix their hair. Girls wear dresses. Despite the fact that she can see quite plainly that some girls do not do those things. Boys on the other hand, they skateboard, and play ball, and build things, etc. etc. etc.

The cultural influences are SO STRONG, that she has all these strange ideas about what girls do. So for that reason, I wouldn't want that book in our house. It would just reinforce what she already thinks - that boys get all the fun stuff. Meanwhile, could you imagine the good that a "dangerous book for girls" or "for children" would do for her?

So that's why I wouldn't like it...because of the large influence things like that have on one little girl that I love. A little girl that I wish could love herself for what she is, instead of already at the age of SIX, wishing she was something else.

I see why you and your commenters might think this kind of complaint is "tired" as Kay said. But to me, the fact that this book exists (with its current title) is tired. The fact that no one sees how its impacting kids is tired. The fact that you see a book about knot tying, tree house building, secret ink, first aid, and naval flags as celebrating boyishness is tired. Most of all, the fact that if I were to buy this for my small friend, she would love it, but also learn to further loathe her femaleness is very very fucking tired.

Thank you for making the PC argument, Tertia! I'm so tired of boys having to be ashamed they are boys, because certain feminists take the political correctness too far. IT'S STILL OKAY FOR A BOY TO BE LIKE A BOY.

I just wanted to add that I find it sad so many people look negatively at cultural influence. Why are people trying to force their children to be androgynous? How is that any better? An author should feel free to write a book about boys - for boys - without being attacked because it didn't include girls. Can anyone here tell me they haven't been exposed to "Girls Only" things? Oh, no that's right - I forgot. It's okay for girls to have their special things, but if boys do we are suddenly raising them in a sexist fashion.

There's nothing wrong with boys and girls having things uniquely for them. That is what makes gender such a special thing. I rarely see problems with crossing over typical boundaries - a girl playing baseball (me) or a boy playing a woodwind instrument (my husband) - but to deny children and even adults the pleasure of giggling at some of their childhood behaviors so typical of boys and girls is just dumb.

Girls shouldn't have to be included in everything for boys anymore than I would expect it the other way around. And while there are obvious situations of "tomboyish" girls (and one of my sisters is the epitome of such!) and more femininely inclined boys, I refuse to let a minority of situations entirely reconstruct a majority situation. It's sad enough it's happening in politics, let alone my own backyard. If my daughter wants to play baseball, I'll be the first in line to buy her a bat. I played for ten years and loved it. If my son wants to play the clarinet, he can use the one my husband played back in school.

I see no problem with fitting to the needs of a child, but to cross out every book and movie title, and repaint every toy truck and doll to make sure "boygirl" is the new gender role for all is really just sad. It makes the world gray, and I just hate the thought of living in a colorless world.

I really want to get that book for my girls! They would love that stuff!

To A, above, I would never argue that there aren't at least *some* intrinsic gender differences. I'm not out to eradicate all distinctions here. But I don't quite get why some of these particular activities are "genderized" at all, and honestly it saddens me. My husband and his brothers and sisters are all serious, competitive sailors, and I would certainly hope that any child of ours would learn to tie a proper knot, boy or girl. I don't see it as a crossover thing -- I see as something they all might want to participate in equally. (Though it's fine with me if they don't!) And playing the clarinet as a traditionally feminine activity? Huh? Have we now decided there's something sissy about a kid learning an instrument? 'Cause that's just depressing.

It's not that I see a problem, exactly, with targeting books to a particular audience. And I'm sure this is a great book, and that many boys will get a lot out of it. But I'm thinking of a female college student I know who's an architecture and engineering student, and her interest was originally fired when her dad encouraged her to build a fabulous treehouse. And if, hypothetically, this kind of categorization encourages some boys to tell the neighbor girl that she can't build a treehouse with them, because that's a BOY thing... and then she's less likely to pursue those kinds of interests down the line, I don't think we really need to embrace that so wholeheartedly,

I don't see anything wrong with letting boys be boys. What bugs me is the idea that certain activities are just for boys, and certain activities are just for girls. Why can't we just celebrate kids individually instead of shoehorning them into gender stereotypes? Girls who are interested in tying knots and paper airplanes and secret ink and Morse code shouldn't be made to feel like freaks.

My husband does the exact same thing - picks up something and says "ma ze?" (what is this?) in a tone that actually says "what the hell is this?". It drives me bonkers. And when he is in another room and shouts "ma ze?" to me, oh, I just love that.

SPOT ON TERTIA! The Book is not subtitled "And fuck-off all you girls, this is not for you." I love that the authors were unafraid to call it a book for boys. Boys and girls are different.


My issue with the complaints is the assumption that it is only saying these things are for boys. It doesn't say that! And who is to say there aren't books out there aimed at all children, aimed at girls wanting to do such things, etc.? There are literally millions of books on the market. If this one is geared towards boys and what "typical" boys like to do, so what? Girls can read the book as well, find another book they like or here's a thought - write one themselves!

As someone who has devoted their professional career to the field of psychology, I can tell you there are much more than a few intrinsic differences between males and females. Today's society very rarely prevents boundary crossing; the reason it doesn't happen too often is because most people like associating with their gender!

The fact of the matter is that in today's society children have much fewer opportunities to NOT be exposed to limitless hobbies and career options than they do. Even if growing up in a strictly traditional household (which, based on divorce rates happens as low as 1/3 of time, with less than 40% of those even being typical SAHM and working dad situations), they are in school systems where they are allowed to take art, child development, CADD, carpentry, band, choir or whatever else strikes their fancy. College recruiters stand in gender neutral hallways to speak to any student inquiring about attending college, males and females have the same graduation requirements, and the same teachers.

It is harder for a young lady to go into fields such as engineering not because everyone is telling her to put on an apron and bake a pie, but because anyone who enters new cultural territory has challenges to face - plain and simple. I doubt male RN's have the easiest time working in hospitals. But either way, one small book written for the pleasure of little boys is not some catastrophic, discriminatory piece of literature. And if a girl is not strong enough to realize she doesn't have to be proclaimed in every aspect of the world in order for her to appreciate life, she has much bigger things to worry about.

I agree with Paola, Jess, TC, etc. Don't have a problem with typical boy/girl behavior. Knowing cool stuff and knowing how to do cool stuff is not a boy thing. It's an interesting, happy, engaged human being thing.

Lisa: That "what is this"? from the other room drives me nuts. Like my eyeballs are on stalks. I didn't realize that happened anywhere else.

Yes, boys and girls ARE intrinsically different. Raising a daughter and seeing my friends and relatives raise boys has only served to confirm this to me.

I've no doubt that the book above will appeal more to boys than to girls, but there will be many girls who are interested in many of these activities and I'd hate them to get the subliminal message that these activities are not for them because of the title.

I'm not trying to raise my daughter to be androgynous, but I want her to be HER - and would therefore like to see the activities and choices which are available to her be presented in as gender-neutral a way as possible, so that she can choose to do exactly those things that interest her without having any subliminal pressure from society about whether her choices are 'appropriate' or not.

'A' states that her quarrel is with the assumption that these things are only for boys. But we're not arguing the general here. We are talking about a specific book. I personally would have said that the book's title was pretty unequivocal and that while we as adult women might be able to get past the title and realise that the activities inside are suitable for both genders, I'm not so sure that 10 year old boys and girls have reached that level of sophistication yet. Tell me again what's wrong with 'The Dangerous Book for Kids'?

Ha - your rant! Some people are just born that way, perpetually offended.

Thank god it's not you or me - what a miserable way to live!

Loved the rant. Loved the book review, too. I'm buying two copies - one for my son (for when he's older) and one for my 10 year old nephew. Thanks!

Book looks fab...I think I'll buy it for my nephew.

I'm not offended by the title of the book or the fact that it was written to boys in particular. From what I can tell, it doesn't look like the book says girls *can't* do any of those things. It just says boys generally do and why that's okay. I fail to see the problem here. There are eighty million (approx.) books out there affirming girls' rights to do boy things. (I know because I'm a librarian.) What's wrong with one for boys? I guess it boils down to my attitude about gender: I think boys and girls are different. My husband is a boy and I do NOT want to be included into every little facet of his universe. Doesn't mean I don't do boy things (fix the house, lift heavy things, etc.) Doesn't mean others can't enjoy them. I just think making a fuss over what is plainly obvious (boys and girls are different yet can do the same things) is more effort than it's worth.

Plus, like Tertia, I'm infernally tired of the PC vanilla. Let's mix it up with some rocky road.

I think empowering girls and being positive about girls is fabulous. I am a girl. I mean, I am thankful for those who have gone before me and given me the freedom I have now. But sometimes...I worry, that we are so focused on girls and how to redress the historical grievences against them that we're going to lose our boys. Since I have two sons I am personally concerned about this. Boys should celebrate who they are just like girls are encouraged to now. I don't think "subversion of women" is part of what makes a boy love being a boy, you know? Why do we have to imagine it into there?

Well, way to write off a whole class of people and their beliefs as being vanilla, thoughtless, and emblematic of being incapable of having any fun. What if I said "oh, those infertiles? so selfish and not thinking of the greater costs in health care when there are children to adopt. GOD."

A, if you study psychology then you should know that small environmental cues can make a big difference in performance. Remind women of their gender before she takes a math test and they'll perform, on average, worse than if you hadn't. I just don't think that anyone could know the evidence from psychology and not see how this might have unintended consequences. But, the folks who disagree with this point of view on this post seem to be too proud of being counter-PC (and so kewl for it) instead of fuddy-duddy unthinking sheep.

One more follow-up on mare's point above mine: the potential effects of telling boys this is what they should be is just as sad, to me, as telling girls what standards they must conform to.

It sounds like a cool book. I am a little torn on the title - as the mother of a son I want him to enjoy being a boy and targetting a book at him seems fine to me.

At the same time, I do hope/wish that a Dangerous Book for Girls comes out that is 95% of the same and is placed next to the boys' one. Besides, it doubles the market.

PULEEEEEEEZE!!!!!!!! Has everybody gone mad? Is there a full moon? Someone spike the punch????
Artemesia... ROFLMAO!!! You are right on point!

I have Boy/Girl twins, was a full-on tomboy growing up, and, as an only parent treated my kids exactly alike... until they were about 8 months old and their little personalities began to appear. I now treat them according to their likes, dislikes, strengths and weaknesses.
This book sounds sweet and hilarious and i am going to buy it for my son to read with his grandfather. If my daughter wants to join in, then, hooray for her!
Can't you folks see the humor in this? The tongue in cheek character? No?
Too bad. You are missing out on all the fun.

Well... I'm still buying it for my son. Hopefully he'll recover (grin).

Don't the little girls in question have PARENTS? Aren't the parents the ones with the responsibility to encourage their children to be whatever they want to be? My parents certainly did. I'm 37 years old. Back when I was very young, most moms I knew were stay at homes, or teachers, or secretaries. Even with no female executive role models, today, I am a senior manager at a Fortune 500 company. I have 2 college degrees, and 2 professional certifications. I married when I was 30. I bought my own house 2 years before that. Oh, and I did all this in the very good-ole-boy Deep South. I thought we women had come a long way. However, I'm starting to doubt it if we have to not allow any book about anything be written for boys at any time.

There is nothing wrong with the title "Dangerous book for kids". Or Dangerous book for girls. Or dangerous book for boys. It's called: Free Speech. Every potential reader has the freedom to buy or not to buy the book. The freedom of choice to raise their kids how they see fit, including teaching them that they can be/do whatever they want to. There is no need to force conformity upon everyone. There are enough book titles to go around. Besides, the authors are MEN - and they were writing from their own experiences.

Exerpt from CNN.com - Girls are explicitly -- and, some argue, unnecessarily -- excluded by the book's title.

Iggulden is unconcerned.

"It's not exactly that we are excluding girls, but we wanted to celebrate boys, because nobody has been doing it for a long while," he said.

"I think we've come through the period when we said boys and girls were exactly the same, because they're not. Boys and girls have different interests, different ways of learning, and there's no real problem in writing a book that plays to that, and says, let's celebrate it. Let's go for a book that will appeal to boys."
(full article at http://www.cnn.com/2007/SHOWBIZ/books/04/25/dangerous.book.ap/index.html)

AMEN. It cracks me up that people will scream so loudly for rights and freedoms, while at the same time trying to stifle the rights and freedoms of others. The author made a choice with the title. If it offends you, don't buy the book. Period. End of story. It's a book, not a calculated sinister plot against women.

Anybody remember "Are you there God, it's me Margaret" by Judy Blume - well that's a book targeted to girls. And also a book I will make darn sure my son reads too, when the time is right. Parental influence is far stronger than any book title.

I'm of two minds on your rant. On the one hand, nothing every "just is." If something happens, there is a reason for it and it is inscribed in a particular context, though sometimes we are too immersed in that context to be able to see it clearly. A book specifically aimed at one particular group, especially children, intended as a (serious or tongue-in-cheek) "teaching guide" will certainly contain boatloads of assumptions about what it means to be a member of that group, and thus what is excluded. To suggest that this is not the case is at best deluded.

On the other hand, does the existence of a book designed for boys necessarily mean that it is negative for girls? Of course not. Boys as much as girls need an understanding of what it means to be a boy/man in this world, what that looks like, what is expected, where he will fit in, etc. However, having not seen the book I won't try to pronounce myself on whether the image of boyhood portrayed in this book is one I would want for my (currently only dreamed-of) boys. Is this beige? I don't think so. It's simply being aware of the world in which I live. Much like I would try to avoid actively sending messages to my children that I expect them to hurt others, I will also try to model and show what it means to be a woman or a man in the world - and in my mind that involves equality, vulnerability, honesty, etc. If that is found in this book then excellent - but if not, that's ok too. And in a world where the offerings for children are increasingly gender-segregated (pink! princess! blue trucks! etc) the title itself is definitely an understandable flash point.

Why are all you people who are pro the book so angry? And feel the need to be so insulting?

For Shandra, who hopes that there will be a Dangerous Book for Girls with 95% of the same content (as I do) please note (from the same CNN article quoted by Kay above) that "Penguin is issuing "The Great Big Glorious Book for Girls," billed as a book for women who "dream of making elderflower cordial and need reminding of how to play cat's cradle."


Something else I thought of later: When a book comes out specifically targeting boys, there is this certain response you get that says "why not everybody, where is the one for girls, etc." And yet, if you look at one of the many books either targeting girls or specifically mentioning girls, you do not seem to hear the same kind of sentiment that boys should not be excluded, or if you do it is shouted down by the retort that, presumably, "everything" is already for boys, and girls need to have special things just for them. I don't know if I would agree with the assessment of our culture as still being decidedly male-centric, and I certainly wonder if it won't be even less the case with the generation that is being born now.

Also, I think it is a similar phenomenon to name shift: when parents start choosing boy names for their little girls that name stops getting used as a boy name. As far as I know this process does not occur in reverse. Girls are encouraged to like whatever they want, even if (maybe especially if, in some cases) it is traditionally "boy territory." But I don't find boys are similarly encouraged to cross traditional gender barriers. At least it doesn't seem as prevalent in popular culture. Think about cross-dressing. I'm sure there still IS such a thing as a female cross dresser, but on the surface the idea seems sort of amusing, because women can feel free to wear what they want. But if a man puts on a female garment, it is definitely considered strange. I sometimes think women had this revolution in the name of equal rights but what they did was take the power to do whatever they wanted and left men with their pigeon hole. And yes, absolutely men are complicit in this restriction - during all of the feminist movements other women were often the biggest opponent, I doubt this would be different.

Anyway, I'm just sort of rambling now. Like I said before, I have two sons and when I'm not chasing after them and cleaning them off and keeping them from their doom, when I remember I actually have to teach them things, I wonder what it means nowadays to be a parent of boys. And I worry. But then again I'm just a worrier.

And where I say women have the freedom to do what they want: I understand the realities of the situation may be different, especially when dealing with groups of men predominantly from older generations (at this point the highest levels of the infrastructure - business, gov't, etc) or with those last few typically "male" frontiers. But I believe the idea that women can do whatever they want - have a family, work, both, be an executive, run a business, heck, as we may see, be President of the United States - is definitely a socialized truth in at least U.S. culture. But I do understand it isn't perfectly universally true.

Oh my good lord, what a fuss. Loved the book, and your rant. Let's face it, girls will read anything they want to anyway (no title's going to put them off, if anything, I'd say it would encourage them), and anything that will encourage boys to read, and then alone go outside and do stuff, has got to be a good thing.

I bought this for my eight year old son for Christmas. He *LOVES* it.

Enough said.

Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret doesn't say A BOOK FOR GIRLS on the cover.

I, too, have noticed that when a name starts being used for girls, it isn't for boys anymore. And that it's OK for girls to dress like boys, not vice versa. I think that says more about the perceived ickiness of anything being for girls than it does anything bad for boys. I remember reading that some hoo-hah in Great Britain is concerned that pay and prestige for certain professions seem to go down when women enter them; the solution offered was for women not to enter them. Tired of the boys' club.

If you offer cute dolls to boys and girls, girls will mostly want them and boys mostly won't. Offer trains, and it's the other way around. That's cool. You don't have to label something FOR GIRLS or FOR BOYS for it to be that way.

A somewhat different perspective (and one which may only hold true here is Australia) relates to falling male literacy levels and a widely discussed concern about boys 'falling behind' girls in terms of academic performance. Various theories have been suggested for this situation, including the increasing feminisation of our education system and the associated linkage with lack of male teachers/male role models in schools, particularly as primary (elementary) school level. There is also a fairly conclusive argument that reading and early literacy correlates strongly with later academic outcomes.

If this book encourages boys to read, and in doing so helps with later education, surely we all win: as mothers of sons who succeed, or of daughters who have future relationships with these boys or simply from living in a more lierate society.

As a post script, DS (4.5 yrs) and I went to the library today. Among his selection were a book about a scary ghost, about a beach holiday, one about some fairies living in a little girls garden and one about food and making new friends in a different culture. These were HIS selections and I feel quite comfortable knowing that he'll read (or get me to read) books that appeal to his regardless of any gender stereo typing which may be going on elsewhere.

My specific reference to the Judy Blume book - was that when I was in school, the girls were required to read it, and the boys were NOT ALLOWED to. I'm not even sure what they read while we were doing the Margaret book.

My point goes back to the fact that it is UP TO US AS PARENTS to teach our kids that we want them to think independently. I want my son to know about "girl issues". We have him in a dance class, computer classes, and t-ball. We will encourage him to do the things that interest HIM, just as I will allow/and encourage my daughter to play sports, and dig in the dirt, and lift weights, take dancing and piano, along with whatever other pursuits she is interested in. In fact, I am in big trouble if she turns out to be a girly girl, because I am so not one.

I'm not so much angry about the issue of people wanting equality for girls. I'm a girl. I parent a girl. I can do anything I want to, if I work hard enough. So can she. I just think it is MY job to teach her, not to rely on book titles, or the media, or "the culture". Because, frankly, I'm not impressed with "the culture" of everyone getting offended by everything. I'm not impressed that TV shows so many teenagers having sex. I'm not impressed by the culture promoted by hollywood. Again, it's MY JOB to help BOTH of my children sort through all the garbage, and somehow grow into warm, caring, successful human beings. We have to teach them how not to bend to peer pressure. How to buck the system when it is unjust. How to be strong enough to fight for what you believe in. Teach them inner strength and fortitude.

Complaining about book titles and assuming that any title has power over your child just seems weak to me. It's buying into whatever stereotypes are out there. Like there is no acceptance of responsibility for our own actions or beliefs. I don't expect anyone else to do it for me.

For everyone who wants the author to change the title of the book, why can't YOU do the communication to your own child? If your daughter says that little Tommy told her that she couldn't build a model plane because it's "for boys", then why can't you say - yes, little boys like to build planes. But let me tell you a story about a LADY who flew all the way.....Amelia Earhart... Would YOU like to build a plane? I'll help you.

To me, THAT is the lesson that will be far more valuable to the child.

"...blah blad fishpaste"?! What a terrific line!!

I couldn't agree more--and I say that as a die-hard feminist.

There's a book you might enjoy, it's called
"Boys put you on a pedestal (to look up your skirt)"
it's along the same lines as this one, but it was written by a father who had his 2 daughters in mind and it's actually quite cute.

It's called:

Boys Will Put You on a Pedestal (So They Can Look Up Your Skirt) by Philip Van Munching

I don't think Kalahari.net has it though :/

"For Shandra, who hopes that there will be a Dangerous Book for Girls with 95% of the same content (as I do) please note (from the same CNN article quoted by Kay above) that "Penguin is issuing "The Great Big Glorious Book for Girls," billed as a book for women who "dream of making elderflower cordial and need reminding of how to play cat's cradle."


Oh ugh, and sigh indeed. I might spend my dollars elsewhere.

As a mother of 4 boys, I had to write about this book on my blog. And the reaction I got was mixed. It struck me, at first, as odd they they would call it for "boys", but I learned from my comments, how important this book for "boys" really is. As, we have given the girls their chance to express who they are, but few avenues for boys exist today, without getting their toes stepped on. So, I embrace the book. Some people of course do not get the beauty of the book.

"Tell me again what's wrong with 'The Dangerous Book for Kids'?"

Absolutely nothing. What is wrong is this entire "oh, poor boys, nobody celebrates them" line of absolute crap. Look at the world. Look at the relative positions of men and women in it. Then tell me with a straight face that males aren't held in high esteem and get cool books like this while girls get Disney Princess garbage and (cough) elderberry cordial. You know what is boring and vanilla to me? Holding up the same tired gender stereotypes.

Oh Tertia, how I agree with your rant.

Seriously, whatever happened to a writer having the freedom to write a book to whatever audience he or she chooses?

I think it's fabulous that the a man chose to write a book for boys. Boys need strong male role models, just like girls need to see strong women.

So what if men are held in high esteem? Does that mean that boys should be treated like shit while we all go on and on about girl power? Because, really! Who is buying all the Disney Princess garbage? Men?

"Tell me again what's wrong with 'The Dangerous Book for Kids'?"

"Absolutely nothing. What is wrong is this entire "oh, poor boys, nobody celebrates them" line of absolute crap. Look at the world. Look at the relative positions of men and women in it. Then tell me with a straight face that males aren't held in high esteem and get cool books like this while girls get Disney Princess garbage and (cough) elderberry cordial. You know what is boring and vanilla to me? Holding up the same tired gender stereotypes."

AMEN to that smmo!!

"Stuff that boys need to know about. Things like how to tie a knot and how to build a tree house. It answers important questions about the world like ‘Why is a summer’s day longer than a winter’s day?’ It also has chapters on first aid, naval flags and grammar. It talks about Pirates and Shakespeare and secret ink. Lots and lots of really important boy stuff."

"The Great Big Glorious Book for Girls," billed as a book for women who "dream of making elderflower cordial and need reminding of how to play cat's cradle."

Let me see, do I want my daughter to think the stuff in the first book is for boys and the stuff in the second book is for girls.

Hell NO!

For the love of BOYS who freaking cares?!? Most of us are women, and we can speak our minds and we were around when EVERYTHING was geared towards boys. Everything. Give this a rest. Enjoy the book if you want... if not, don't buy it! Personally, I think it looks awesome. For girls and boys and women and men. I think I, as a grown woman, can learn something from this book.

This PC stuff gets just so tiring and makes me want to scream.

love the book and am looking for an excuse to buy it.

just my 2.5cents worth, in our race to be oh so PC we're becoming so bloody boring, why not celebrate the differences, theres time enough to be vanilla/beige later in life.

Conn actually talks a great deal about this, here:


Cheers, Felicia

Reluctant Housewife - I'm not sure how you're making the jump between people wanting gender neutral books of cool stuff, and boys being treated like shit?

I'm also not sure about how many of the people here seem to be making the assumption that because we don't like the book title, we think the author should be censored. I didn't see anyone say anything of the sort. Personally, my main feeling is that I would not buy that book for my boys or girls. I don't give a shit about whether the author writes the book, but I do think that the title is something to ask serious questions about. Not to stop him from writing it, but to add to our understanding of gender issues, and open up possibilities for all of our children.

mare_imbrium - If you ask me why it's ok for women/girls to like men's/boy's things, but not vice-versa, I would say it's because we live in a misogynist world. It's seen as understandable, if not natural, for women to aspire to maleness, because maleness = power. When men aspire to femininity it's seen as gross or perverse because femininity = weakness, and no one should ever want to be weak.

I'm not saying I believe this or Tertia believes this or you do, but I do think it's a duality Western culture is built on, and it's caused a lot of people, both male and female, a lot of pain.

I'm just not seeing boys knowing about science and how to tie knots and build treehouses a gender difference to celebrate.

Another great book for boys that my son and I found is Bart King's The Big Book of Boy Stuff. Tons of fun activities, experiments, jokes, info on gross stuff like barfing and burping. My son has about worn his copy out!

i love book reviews! this sounds like the kind of book i would have given to damien when he was younger... i may just buy it anyway!

Hey, I just read about this book this week! A London paper had an article about the changes being made for the upcoming American edition of the book--cricket has to go, because American boys know nothing about it, but rugby can stay. Less about the kings and queens of England, a little more American history (e.g., the Wright brothers and the first airplane flight).

Will be interesting to see if the book takes off in the U.S., and if the "What about the girls?" issue comes up much.

I'm writing as a male from the US -- yes, the American version is selling like gangbusters, and yes, the "why not for girls" issue has cropped up here (PC knows no boundaries).

FYI: Harper Collins is due to release "The Daring Book for Girls" in November. I understand this will be the girls equivalent of "Dangerous". From what I've read of "Glorious", it isn't intended to be the equivalent of "Dangerous" that "Daring" apparently will be.

In any event, I think I'll withold judgement on "Glorious" until after its published and people actually have a chance to read it.

The Daring Book for Girls.

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