Books for Boys

[from The Children’s Hour]

A colleague recently asked me for some recommendations for books for boys, so I thought I’d post my list and reflections here. Many more no doubt could or should be listed, but below are some books my boys and I have enjoyed. I compiled the list by giving a quick look back over this blog and by asking my sons what they remembered as their favorites. Links take you to discussions of these books on this blog. Typically my thoughts on the age range for the book can be found at the link.

First, here are a few really good articles on the topic. Some relate specifically to boys and others more generally to the importance of reading good stories:


Living with Books from this blog

Thomas Spence, Wall Street Journal,”How to Raise Boys Who Read”

David Mills, “Bad Books for Kids: A Guide to the World of Youth Literature & What You Can Do About It”

Martin Cothran, “The Dangerous Article for Boys: Why boys don’t need to get in touch with their feelings and how you can protect them from people who think they do (with a list of books to help you fend these people off)”

David Mills, “Enchanting Children: Training Up a Child Requires a Well Formed Imagination


C. S. Lewis, Chronicles of Narnia

J. R. R. Tolkien, The Hobbit (younger ages), Lord of the Rings (older)

John White, The Archives of Anthropos series – The Sword Bearer, Gaal the Conqueror, The Tower of Geburah– good allegorical fantasy; some dark elements

R. M. Ballantyne- The Coral Island, and others- With a boy as the main character in each story Ballantyne tells great adventure stories with the Christian faith prominently featured

G. A. Henty (blog entries)- Good historical fiction with a boy as the main character. Some are better than others. Character, courage, faith and perseverance are prominent. My favorite Henty is In the Reign of Terror (French Revolution)

Alta Abernathy, Bud & Me : The True Adventures of the Abernathy Boys– Fascinating true story of perseverance, courage and family

Douglas Bond, Hostage Lands– Roman Britain

Rosemary Sutcliffe- The Lantern Bearers, Eagle of the Ninth– Roman Britain

Allen French, The Story of Rolf and the Viking Bow, The Lost Baron, The Red Keep– Medieval Europe

Piet Prins Struggle For Freedom Series (Martin & Boudewyn) When the Morning Came, Dispelling the Tyranny, [others in series]

A. Van der Jagt, The Escape: The Adventures of Three Huguenot Children Fleeing Persecution, The Secret Mission: A Huguenot’s Dangerous Adventures in the Land of Persecution

Douglas Bond, The Crown & Covenant Series- Duncan’s War, King’s Arrow, Rebel’s Keep (combined review)- one of our favorite series ever; Scottish history

J. H. Hunter, How Sleep the Brave: A Novel of 17th Century Scotland

Kathleen Fidler, I Rode with the Covenanters

Peter Reese Doyle, Drums of War series– American Revolution

Douglas Bond- Faith & Freedom trilogy- Guns of Thunder, Guns of the Lion– American Revolution

Edward Stratemeyer- The Minute Boys of Lexington and Concord, The Minute Boys of Bunker Hill American Revolution

Douglas Bond, Mr. Pipes series- Mr. Pipes and the British Hymn Makers, Mr. Pipes and the Psalms and Hymns of the Reformation, Mr. Pipes comes to America, The Accidental Voyage: Discovering Hymns of the Early Centuries

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