Beth of Oregon, 6/15/2011
Raising Real Men: Surviving, Teaching and Appreciating Boys by Hal & Melanie Young is a book full of practical advice for parents of boys. The first half of the book covers such topics as manliness, heroes, adventure and recklessness, playing, leadership, discipline, and competition all with a Biblical perspective. The second half continues with how to teach your boys about "real life" and to also instill in them the desire to be God's man. The authors reminded the reader that many things that drive us crazy about our boys are manly virtues that need to be understood, cultivated, disciplined, and practiced.
It is reassuring to know that something that especially annoys you about your son, when it is trained in the right way, can become his greatest asset. I found Raising Real Men: Surviving, Teaching and Appreciating Boys to be an encouraging read and a book that I will be referring to again and again as my husband and I continue our journey in raising our "real men".
Most Practical Book on Raising Boys We Have
Eli Evans of Exodus Books, 5/20/2011
I don't often read whole books on raising children, preferring instead to skim and read selectively. Future Men, by Doug Wilson was the last book on raising boys I'd actually finished (in 2001!)...until now. I couldn't put Raising Real Men down.
Unlike Wilson, Hal & Melanie Young have six boys—so they have plenty of experience—and they are able to blend a solidly Biblical worldview, common sense, and a great sense of humor into a highly practical book for families with boys of all ages. It discusses all the major topics: masculine education (from cradle to college), service and leadership, love and war, heroes and adventure. And it's very earthy, getting into details like playing with toy guns, appropriate competition, work roles, even educational ideas like taking CLEP tests.
I plan to apply principles learned (or reviewed) in this book with my own son. And I know I'm not alone in liking it, as it recently won the CSPA 2011 Book of the Year. Raising Real Men: check it out!
Daniel of Oregon, 4/14/2011
Reading this book made me wish I had boys! So far, God has blessed us with two daughters, but God willing, I'll be reading this book again in the future, and putting it into practice. The Youngs (parents of six boys) cover lots of important topics like taking responsibility, manners, respecting authority, a biblical view of competition, and learning to take risks (with wisdom!).
This book is very solid, and most things they say are backed up by Scripture. The only very minor issue I disagreed with was their house rules on playing with guns (they treat even toy guns as real guns, don't point them at each other, and only fight imaginary bad guys).
As a former boy, and the oldest of three brothers, I resonated with this book and enjoyed it a lot. If you have sons, I would definitely read it!