Thursday, April 14, 2011

Books For Boys

I know all boys don't hate to read, but we have actual scientific evidence that my son hates to read.  My daughter did a science project, where she tested his heart rate after different activities (sitting, reading, walking, running).  His reading heart rate was almost as high as his running heart rate and considerably higher than his walking heart rate.  He’s a smart kid that doesn’t have any learning disabilities-he just hates to read. This confuses me, b/c books are my best friends.

When a big blockbuster movie based on a book is coming out, I tell them that whoever reads the book gets to see the movie.  It only works with my daughter, but maybe it will work for you.  I've also tried letting him watch the movie first and then getting him the book, but that's never worked either.

 Here are some books that he hates a little less:


I think sometimes non-readers are intimated by entire books, but if they have to only tackle a poem at a time, they relax and enjoy themselves a little more, especially if it’s funny.

Anything by Shel Sliverstein
Monster Goose by Judy Sierra-pure genius right up there with Silverstein and LOL funny

Miles of Smiles-edited by Bruce Lansky (this is a collection of funny poems by different authors and it’s a lot of fun)

The Aliens Have Landed by Kenn Nesbit

My husband doesn’t enjoy fiction (I can’t understand it), and has helped me understand that non-fiction is reading too.  My husband has shelves of books on birds and is currently reading 3 books on running (thrilling?) Get your son books about his favorite subjects.  We have shelves of dinosaur books and my kid has read every sports biography in the library.

Phineas Gage: A Gruesome but True Story About Brain Science by John Fleishman
-this is the true story of a railroad worker that survived when a 13 pound rod iron exploded through his skull (can you see why boys might like that?)

Captain Underpants by Dav Pilkey (irreverent w/ lots of potty humor, but that why they like them)

Diary of a Wimpy Kid-by Jeff Kinney (the first 3 are laugh-out-loud funny and even the others are pretty good)

The Guardians of Ga’hoole by Kathryn Lasky-I haven't read this myself

Warriors by Erin Hunter (these are about feral cats that are warriors.  To be honest, I couldn’t get beyond the first chapter, but my kid and his friends love them.)

Sports Illustrated for Kids -My son loves sports, but with all the mess that pro athletes get themselves into, ESPN is not always so kid friendly.

National Geographic for Kids

My Big Back Yard

Here are some other books that I think boys might like, but I haven’t got my son to try them yet.

Leviathan and Behomoth-Scott Westerfeld

The Magic Thief by Sarah Prineus

Maze Runner by James Dashner (a little violent)

The Airman and Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer

The City of Ember-Jeanne Du Prau

The Misadventures of Benjamin Bartholomew Piff by Jason Lethcoe (Reminds me a little of Dahl)

Harry Potter-JK Rowling ( I offered my kid $100 to read them all-so far I haven't given out any $)

Percy Jackson Series by Rick Riordan

Charlie Bone-Jenny Nimmo (there is even a fun website)

Leon an the Spitting Image by Allen Kurzweil

The Ranger’s Apprentice by John Flanagan

Anything by Brandon Mull

For older boys I love Orson Scott Card and Jerry Spinelli.  Maybe even the Inkheart series-although I found it a little bloody.
Click here to read my favorite toddler books.
Click here to read my books for mother-daughter bookclub. (funnest idea ever!)
Do you have any other books, my boys might like?
Linking up here.


  1. Holes by Louis Sachar, The light in the forest by Conrad Richter, Bud not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis, The house of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer, The spiderwick cronicles by Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizza, Blood Red Horse by K.M. Grant, Gregor the Overlander series by Suzanne Collins, The Black Cauldron By Lloyd Alexander (that series), Septemis Heap series by Angie Sage.
    These are all really good books that boys would like. The Hunger games by Suzanne Collins is good too, but for older boys. It's pretty violent. So is the Maze Runner, just so you know, but it is good. The Ranger's Apprentice is excellent.

  2. Great suggestions. I loved Holes-so much better than the movie. I would also suggest the Scorpian King and Hunger games for older boys. We actually read the Spiderwick chornicles aloud-how could I forget about that one. I'll have to check the other's out.

  3. So you and Bartlett Pear have already mentioned some of their favorites, but here are a few other my boys recommend: 39 clues series (different authors write different books), Eragon-Eldest-Brisingr, anything and everything written by Andrew Clements, Radio Fifth Grade by Gordon Korman (my oldest likes all his books, but some series are pretty scary), Mysterious Benedict Society, Seekers by Erin Hunter (Griff used to be crazy about Warriors, Seekers is the first in a new series), my more reluctant son really likes Magyk--so I'll add my recommendation to the one above.

  4. I like the MBS too, but I thought it started dragging about half way through. I've only read the first two.

  5. I have a one year old boy and so far he loves books. This is a great list thanks for sharing. The Read Aloud Handbook also talks about good books for boys.

  6. Such great suggestions! My son is still too young for some of these but I am with you on doing everything we can to foster a love of reading. My hubby doesn't really enjoy fiction either and it baffles me! And I agree that anything with bodily function humor or science or mystery helps boys (both big and little!) enjoy the reading experience. Thanks for sharing this with us at Inspiration Friday!

  7. Jacob loves the Alex Rider series. I think his dad works for MI6 and they recruit him or something like that. I've been enjoying Reckless, the new book by Cornelia Funke. There is also another series that Jacob has been checking out from his school in Japan about a kid that is a Samurai warrior, sorry, don't know the name of it and Jacob is asleep.

  8. My son is an avid reader- which has been fortunate for us because that can be a battle- He has read almost all of the books you mentioned but I would like to second the 39 Clues suggestion. There is an online aspect to these books which my son ate up... He is 12 but started reading these in the 5th grade and soon got his teacher and the whole class hooked. They are a fun read, kinda 'National Treasure'ish.
    Also, I have been surprised how many BYU football related books my son brings home- from Ty Detmer biographies to championship yearbooks, that keeps him interested for hours.