Books

Top 5 books about boys

The Double Dangerous Book for Boys author Conn Iggulden picks the best reads about boyhood

The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole, Aged 13 ¾ by Sue Townsend

The first of a superb eight-book series. I grew up with them, just about. Funny enough to make me laugh out loud in a full train carriage, which is rare! His frustrated loves, his expertise on the Norwegian leather industry, measuring his ‘thing’ and the chaos of a school coach trip – all brilliantly told.    

The Broken Empire trilogy by Mark Lawrence

Prince of Thorns was the first. Very dark fantasy, with a hugely damaged boy as the main character. So well written it made me want to kick my own computer in sheer envy.   

Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman 

I haven’t seen the recent TV series, but the book is somehow the best of both authors in one. It is full of brilliant banter about a mix-up with the antichrist, the apocalypse and the other four horsemen.  

Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card 

A ruthless boy-genius has to learn how to survive in military school, surrounded by enemies. Ticked pretty much all my boxes right there. 

Raising Boys in the 21st Century by Steve Biddulph 

I don’t usually buy parenting books, but this one was brilliant. I got it when I had sons and it turned out to be really useful. Just knowing their ear canals develop at different rates to the rest of them was important. Sometimes, they really don’t hear you yelling!   

The Double Dangerous Book for Boys by Conn Iggulden is out now (Penguin, £12.99) 

Image: Jules Beresford

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