Hey guys, here’s some fun news…
One Man Book Club is featured in the Father’s Day edition of Peekaboo magazine!
Here’s the article I wrote for them. Enjoy!
One Man Book Club
By Dan Grover
I’d like to introduce you to One Man Book Club, your destination for age- and content-aware book reviews!
I love surprises.
Sometimes I love surprises.
Like when they come wrapped in a bow, or bring an unexpected smile.
But I HATE being surprised with unexpected violence or language in the books I read—or that my kids read. Movies, television, and even music are kind enough to have content ratings.
But books? Nothing.
Books, as wonderful as they are, have no rating system. Parents and discerning adults are at the mercy of authors and publishers to give clues about the surprises we are going to find in their books.
Spoiler alert: they do a really bad job.
Examples? You bet.
You’ll find the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas shelved in the Juvenile Fiction section of your local library. It’s published by Bloomsbury Children’s Books. In fact, this is from the Bentonville Public Library’s website: “Looking for the teen girl version of Game of Thrones? Find it in this sweeping fantasy debut – that already has thousands of loyal online fans.”
Major problem: Book one starts out innocent, but, as the series progresses, the four-letter word count skyrockets and the sexual content goes from PG to PG-13. By book five, Empire of Storms—still published by Bloomsbury Children’s, still shelved as juvenile fiction—the sexual content shoots past PG-13, skips R, and lands squarely in the land of porn. Yep. Porn. In our libraries, marketed to teen girls.
How about the popular Divergent Trilogy? These books feature teenage main characters in an unrealistic romantic relationship, yet I see older tweens and young teens reading these all the time. The main characters are 16 and 18, have never even held hands with the opposite sex, yet navigate a complex romantic relationship with the skill of a seasoned adult and maintain super-human control over their hormones.
Did you see the movie Ready Player One? Do you or your teen readers want to read the book? The book is awesome, I highly recommend it… but before you pass it on to your young reader, you might like to know it drops the f-word every 42 pages and the sh-word every 11 pages. It also has a frank discussion of a mature topic on page 192. I put Ready Player One as appropriate for 16 and up, but with the caveat that if you can’t talk to your parents about what you read, you aren’t ready to read it!
To do our job as parents, we need to know what media our kids are consuming. Movies, television, music—they all have rating systems. Books do not! Parents and other discerning adults need a resource to find books they and their kids will love to read… without having to worry about being surprised by the content.
I created One Man Book Club to be that resource. Well… that, and no girls would let me join their book club!
At http://www.OneManBookClub.com, you’ll find over 600 book reviews from over 250 authors…with more being added each week. Each review includes thoughts and opinions about the book, commentary on the content, and a recommended minimum age. You’ll also find curated book lists by age, with books that are age- and content- appropriate. Can’t find the book you’re interested in? Send me a note, and I’ll send back my recommendation.
Want more engagement? Find “One Man Book Club” on Facebook and join in our daily discussions about books and kids and other topics of interest to our community of parents and discerning adults. We’d love to add more friends… the larger and more engaged our community becomes, the better of a resource we will become.
I hope you’ll join us!
Looking for some good books? Give these a try:
For age 10 and under,
For age 10 and up,
For age 12 and up,
For age 14 and up,
For age 16 and up,
For age 18 and up,
Find reviews for these and many more at www.OneManBookClub.com. One Man Book Club was created by Dan Grover, a busy dad of 6 reluctant readers, who loves books and loves to help others find great books to read.
Peekaboo Magazine was created as a printed guide to life for families in Northwest Arkansas, but the content is applicable to families where ever you live!
Check them out at www.peekaboonwa.com.