Offsides YA Sports Audiobook Perfect Road Trip Entertainment for Teens

Offsides YA Sports Audiobook Perfect Road Trip Entertainment for Teens

Hockey Rivals Books

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Offsides YA Sports Audiobook Perfect Road Trip Entertainment for Teens

Do you need some road trip entertainment for teens and tweens this summer? Offsides (Hockey Rivals Book 2) is now available as an Audible audiobook. Maxwell Glick, who narrated Face-Off (Hockey Rivals Book 1) is back as the voice of the McKendrick brothers in this explosive sequel, an action-packed hockey novel for young adults.

The release of the audiobook edition is extremely exciting to me as Offsides was published 26 years after the original publication of Face-Off. The print and e-book editions came out late last year, and Maxwell and I began working on the Audible edition in March. What a fascinating experience this was for me, revisiting characters I created at sixteen years old and hearing my scenes performed by a talented narrator.  I had such fun bringing Brad and T.J. into the present with cell phones, texting, and social media, and even more fun listening to Maxwell’s performance.

I think teens and tweens, especially sports fans, will love listening to the audiobook on car trips or plane rides. Here is a blurb:

Twin hockey stars T.J. and Brad have finally resolved their differences and forged a friendship on and off the ice. Now high school seniors, they focus on landing a commitment to a D1 school.

What should have been the best year ever takes a nasty hit when the boys’ parents announce their divorce, and Brad makes a mistake that could impact his game eligibility. Meanwhile, T.J. faces off against their father, who opposes his decision to delay college and pursue junior hockey.

Adding to the tension are a rebellious kid brother, girlfriend trouble, and recruiting pressure. The turmoil threatens to drive the twins apart just when they need to work together the most. With a championship title and their futures at stake, T.J. and Brad must fight to keep from going offsides. 

You can listen to clips of the Face-Off and Offsides audiobooks below.  If you start a free trial with Audible, you can get an audiobook for free!

Buy Face-Off on Audible

Buy Offsides on Audible

Conclusion

Here is a recent review from Ariesgrl Book Reviews“I read the first book in the series, several years ago and I loved it. I love hockey and I was thrilled to discover a middle grade book. With this sequel, I learned a lot about Junior league and the steps required to catch the eyes of colleges and the NHL. I hope the author continues to develop the series, as I am sure fans are going to crave more McKendrick hockey.”

I hope fans will crave more also as I have an idea for a third book.

Here is a post on why it took me 26 years to publish the sequel and stay tuned for an interview with narrator Maxwell Glick.

High School Hockey Coach Publishes Young Adult Hockey Novel

High School Hockey Coach Publishes Young Adult Hockey Novel

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High School Hockey Coach Publishes Young Adult Hockey Novel

Nick Boorman is no stranger to high school hockey. Besides penning the novel High School Hero: Freshman Year for Page Publishing,  he is also a high school hockey and soccer coach and physical education teacher. Teaching life lessons through sports is his passion. High School Hero introduces Gunner Bale, a first-year high school athlete who sets high goals for personal achievement in the classroom and on the ice. When he is selected for the freshman soccer team, he vows to do everything in his power to make the varsity hockey team; will it be enough? Here is an interview with Nick.

 

Have you had other careers before becoming a writer?

I am actually a really busy person. Besides being a writer, I coach varsity high school hockey and soccer. I am also a physical education teacher, summer camp director, and intramural sports coach. Becoming a published writer is a new chapter for me.

 

What inspired your latest release?

I have been a teacher for 10 years. When I started teaching I realized that many of my students who enjoyed sports did not have enough books they could relate to.  This led to many students saying they did not like to read. I decided to write a book that they would enjoy, not be embarrassed of, and actually learn life lessons through the story. 

 

Were you “born to write” or did you discover your passion for writing later in life?

I was not “born to write”. I have the learning disability dyslexia. Because of this, I grew up a struggling reader. Even though it was hard for me to read I still enjoyed it. Throughout my life I have learned a lot of great life lessons from sports such as the importance of teamwork, perseverance, always displaying high character, and positive leadership. As a teacher and coach I teach these lessons every day to my students and players. I wanted to reach a wider audience for my positive message. That is why writing this book was so appealing to me.

I was always told growing up that I was a good writer, but it took me longer to write than most of my peers. To be honest I was scared that I would never be able to finish a book. But because I was writing about something that really interested me I really enjoyed the process and finishing the book was not a problem.

How much of you is in the books you write? In what ways?

A lot of experienced writers say that writing about what you know is a great way to start. That is what I did. As a hockey and soccer player since kindergarten, those two sports helped shape who I am today. I wrote about many of my life experiences through a fictitious character. This book is by no means my life story, but there are things that happened to me and my friends that feature throughout the book.

 

Do you outline your books or wing it? Describe your process.

I outlined this book for seven years before I began writing. When I started teaching and realized that a vast majority of the athletes could not find a book that interested them that is when the creative juices started following. After seven years of outlining and planning, the book was more than ready to be written.

 

Do you have a view in your writing space? What does your space look like?

My writing space was different all the time. I carried my laptop with me everywhere I went and wrote in different places. I also came up with ideas in my head and would write notes in my phone regularly. The place where a vast majority of my book was written was in a quit dark room. There were no distractions, just me visualizing the story in my head.

 

Tell us about your hero or heroine. Give us one of his/her strengths and one of his/her weaknesses.

The main character of the book is Gunnar Bale. His main goal is to make his high school varsity ice hockey team as a freshman. Gunnar is small for his age and sports do not come easy to him. But Gunnar’s strength is his high character. He is a great friend to Amari and Wes, he is intrinsically motivated to be the best, and he has a contagious positive no quit winning attitude.  Gunnar’s weakness is controlling his emotions. Sometimes he acts before he thinks. This is something that many teens in the target audience can relate to.

 

You’re having a party. What character from your book do you hope attends? Why? What character do you hope doesn’t attend? Why?

There is an exciting scene in the book about a high school party. I certainly do not want to give away that scene. The person I would want most at the party is one of the main characters, Amari. Amari is an extremely hard worker, a great student, quarterback of the football team, hopeful for the varsity hockey team, and a great friend. Amari is a collection of the best parts of many of my friends growing up.

The person I would not want to at my party, and I would never invite to my party is Jimmy Marley. Jimmy is a very poor decision maker. He is a negative influence on all that cross his path. Jimmy portrays the negative path teens can go down while in high school.

 

What might we be surprised to know about you?

I was the captain of my high schools soccer, hockey, and lacrosse teams. I played college hockey for four years and captained the team as a senior.

 

high school hockey coach

 

 

About the Book

Gunnar Bale is just a freshman at Slayton High School, but he has high aspirations to be the big man on campus. Gunnar plays for his high school’s soccer team and is preparing for his top personal goal, making the varsity hockey team. Gunnar is accompanied by great friends and talented adversaries. Does Gunnar have what it takes to play for the best high school hockey team in the state? Can Gunnar survive the social pressures of the teenage wasteland he is dropped into? Strap in for the wild ride!

 

Excerpt

Below is an excerpt from the book. Gunnar Bale has been training to make his school’s varsity ice hockey team. A new student moves to town who is a great hockey player, and Gunnar challenges him to a roller hockey game. . . 

As Gunnar walked up to the roller hockey rink, upperclassmen were patting him on the back and yelling his name. Gunnar was all smiles. He loved the instant popularity and limelight. For a second, he forgot how nervous he was.

Gunnar started to strap up his rollerblades and the crowd started to get restless. Where was Jonny Clarke?

When Gunnar was fully suited up, the varsity guys skated off the rink. It was just Gunnar in the arena, with over three hundred raucous fans surrounding him. He started to skate around and stick handle. He had worked on his game so much, and he wanted to show it off. As he showed off some moves, toe drags, and dekes, the crowd oooed and ahhed.

The crowd was getting restless. Where was Jonny Clarke? Someone from the crowd yelled, “It’s past 6:15 p.m. This kid from Cali isn’t coming!” Right as he yelled this, a loud engine made a roaring noise. Everyone looked to the top of the hill parking lot. It was a brand new Maserati. Out stepped Jonny Clarke with his long bleached-blonde hair flowing in the wind, and his big muscles on full display. His rollerblades were already on and laced up. Jonny lived on the Slayton-Crayfield town line, better known as the filthy rich part of town.

All of Gunnar’s nervous thoughts instantly returned. He was about to play this monster of a freshman in front of three hundred screaming fans. He thought that if he won, he would be the hero he longed to be. If he lost . . . he couldn’t allow that to happen.

As Jonny zipped down the steep hill, the crowd started to get really loud, and the lights came on in the park and perfectly lit the entire rink. It was like he was a pro wrestler, strolling into the ring with a sold-out audience. Jonny played the role of the rockstar villain perfectly.

Jonny yelled out to the crowd, “Sorry to keep you waiting, I’m still on West Coast time. But I’m here. Let’s play some hockey!” The crowd cheered!

Jonny skated over to Gunnar. “Good luck, bro.” They both shook hands. “Everyone is here to see this. Hope you’re ready,” said Jonny with a smirk.

Nate walked out to the middle of the rink. “Listen up, everyone!” he yelled, “The game is to five, loser’s ball on every goal. Take backs to half court. These two diaper dandies will be shooting on the baddest goalie in high school hockey, the BRICK WALL, Steven Gomez!”

Steven went between the pipes. The crowd was shaking the fence and cheering their brains out. Jonny and Gunnar put their sticks down for the face-off. Gunnar looked right into Jonny’s eyes with the fiercest look he could muster up. He wanted to win the early psychological battle.

Jonny, as cool as the other side of the pillow, just smirked and  tapped his stick.

Nate dropped the hockey ball—GAME ON!

 

Where To Buy

High School Hero Website

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

iBooks

Google Play

 

 

AdventHealth / Tampa Bay Lightning Hockey Bear Cheers Up Kids In Hospitals

AdventHealth / Tampa Bay Lightning Hockey Bear Cheers Up Kids In Hospitals

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AdventHealth / Tampa Bay Lightning Hockey Bear Cheers Up Kids In Hospitals

I admit, I’m a Boston Bruins fans, but now I have a special place in my heart for the Tampa Bay Lightning hockey team. And it’s all because of a bear. But before we get into that, let me backtrack to a night several years ago at a New England hospital.

On that fateful night, my six-year-old kindergartener was in the intensive care unit, newly diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. What a scary, heart-wrenching time for all of us. One thing that helped was the kindness of strangers.

During her three-night stay, as my little girl was getting jabbed with needles and her life was changing forever, the hospital staff gave her toys to take home. Maybe because it was around Christmas, people had donated books, board games, and puzzles both for the play room and for kids to keep. But the first gift was one I will always remember.

We were in the ICU shortly after diagnosis and my daughter was doing okay, but frightened. It was 11 o’clock at night, and she should have been home snuggled in bed with her stuffed animals. Instead, she was getting insulin through an IV and hooked up to a heart rate monitor.

Then the nurse brought in a stuffed brown bear wearing a pink hat and wrapped in a soft pink blanket. My daughter clutched that bear the first night and kept it beside her during her whole hospital stay.

“I can keep it?” she asked hopefully. The one time she felt hopeful in those early dark hours. My own emotions kept darting between fear, fury that this was happening, and grief for the end of my daughter’s carefree childhood.

But as she hugged that bear, I remember thinking, “Thank you. Thank you to whoever donated him. There are nice people in the world.”

tampa bay lightning team

Lightning Hockey Magic

That’s why when a press release about the Tampa Bay Lightning’s Buddy Bear programwhich brings bears to children in similar situations—crossed my desk, I had to feature it on my blog.

AdventHealth and the Tampa Bay Lightning team recently teamed up to host the third annual Pediatric Health Night as the Lightning took on the Ottawa Senators. The first 3,000 Bolts fans to visit the designated area inside the AMALIE arena received a free, commemorative co-branded AdventHealth/Lightning Buddy Bear, celebrating the new black Lightning jersey. Before the puck dropped, fans could head to Thunder Alley for family-fun activities and kid-friendly games along with prizes at the AdventHealth tents.

tampa bay lightning fans

For every Buddy Bear handed out at the game, a bear was delivered to a child in AdventHealth’s care along with a personalized note of encouragement from a fan. I love that idea!

And the great thing is, this is an ongoing program. Anyone can purchase a commemorative buddy bear for $25 at http://www.adventhealthbuddybear.com, fill out an online note of inspiration, and AdventHealth will deliver a new bear with the note to a pediatric patient. The Buddy Bear Program benefits the AdventHealth West Florida Foundation and contributions will be used to purchase pediatric life-saving equipment, new technology and create new pediatric facilities and services in the community.

tampa bay lightning souvenirs

“We are more than a trusted healthcare system, we are a dedicated community partner that is committed to helping people live their healthiest life possible,” said Lauren Key, Senior Executive Officer of Consumer Strategy, AdventHealth West Florida Division. “We look forward to encouraging every Bolts fan to write an uplifting message that is delivered with a bear to help our youngest patients smile and feel whole.”

The West Florida Division of AdventHealth has a network of care that includes AdventHealth Carrollwood, AdventHealth Connerton, AdventHealth Dade City, AdventHealth Lake Placid, AdventHealth North Pinellas, AdventHealth Ocala, AdventHealth Sebring, AdventHealth Tampa, AdventHealth Wauchula, AdventHealth Wesley Chapel and AdventHealth Zephyrhills, as well as three freestanding offsite Emergency Rooms including AdventHealth Central Pasco ER, AdventHealth Palm Harbor ER and AdventHealth TimberRidge ER.

“The Lightning are very happy to be once again teaming up with our great partners at AdventHealth to bring attention to pediatric health concerns,” Lightning CEO Steve Griggs said. “We look forward to helping make healthier young Bolts fans in Tampa Bay and would like to thank AdventHealth for always bringing health and wellness to the forefront.”

Tampa Bay Lightning family

About the AdventHealth West Florida Foundation (Formerly Florida Hospital Foundation West Florida Division)

The AdventHealth West Florida Foundation is a not-for-profit 501c3 organization that supports programs and services throughout the AdventHealth West Florida Division network of care. Through generous donations and acts of gratitude, the foundation funds new facilities, and life-saving equipment and technology to advance medicine, enhance patient experiences and provide world-class healthcare, close to home. With a sacred mission of Extending the Healing Ministry of Christ, they strive to help more people feel whole and live their healthiest life possible. 

How To Buy And Donate A Lightning Hockey Bear

Tampa Bay Lightning shopHere are the details on how to participate in the program. Buy a customized AdventHealth / Tampa Bay Lightning team teddy bear for $25.

For every $25 you spend, you’ll receive one bear and a pediatric patient at one of the AdventHealth West Florida hospitals will receive one Buddy Bear.

$25 = One bear for you and one bear for a buddy

$50 = Two bears for you and two bears for two different buddies

$75 = Three bears for you and three bears for three different buddies

$100 = Four bears for you and four bears for four different buddies

If you would like to purchase more than one bear for a buddy, but wouldn’t like more than one bear for yourself, you can let them know in the custom message section of the donation page and they will send your extra bears to additional buddies.

Your generous participation in the Buddy Bear program brings love and joy to the pediatric patients at AdventHealth West Florida hospitals. What a great program for Bolts fans, and for anyone who wants to reach out to a child in the hospital.

Believe me, it will give them a lightning bolt of hope during a tough time.

What do you think of this program? Has your family ever been touched by kindness during a hospital stay? 

 

 

5 Children’s Hockey Books Named Face-Off

5 Children’s Hockey Books Named Face-Off

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5 Children’s Hockey Books Named Face-Off

There aren’t a whole lot of children’ hockey books out there. How ironic that so many of them are named Face-Off! When I named my children’s hockey book Face-Off many years ago, it seemed like the perfect title. After all, it was a hockey term and it also represented the friction between twin brothers Brad and T.J. McKendrick. What a perfect metaphor for a fictional book about hockey and sibling rivalry! Well, the title isn’t as original as I thought. Several other authors of hockey books for kids had the same idea.

I’ve known about the late Matt Christopher’s Face-Off children’s hockey book for years. Our books would often get mistaken for one another in the 1990s.  It was interesting to learn of some others.

Even though several books share the same title, that’s okay. There is plenty of room for other hockey books for kids, even if they’re named Face-Off. I thought it would be fun to compile them into a list. So here goes. Five children’s hockey books titled Face-Off! Click on the titles and book covers for retail links.

Check out 5 children's hockey books named Face-Off - different authors, same love of ice hockey. #hockey #hockeymom #Kidlit Click To Tweet
Face-Off by Stacy Juba – That’s me! Brothers battle on and off the ice in this action-packed young adult sports novel. It’s head-to-head, skate-to-skate, winner takes all! T.J. has gotten himself out of the fancy prep school his father picked for him and into the public high school his twin brother Brad attends. Now T.J. is a shining new star on the hockey team where Brad once held the spotlight. And he’s testing his popularity with Brad’s friends, eyeing Brad’s girl and competing to be captain of the team.

Meanwhile, the boys also grapple with problems at home, including divorcing parents and a troubled younger brother. The whole school is rooting for a big double-strength win…not knowing that their twin ice hockey stars are heating up the ice for a winner takes all face-off.

 

Face-Off by Jake Maddox – Kyle wants to be a great hockey player just like his older brother, but to do that, he must focus all of his energy on the game and not be distracted by a teammate’s injury.

Face-Off by Matt Christopher – A jealous teammate can lead to danger on the ice…. When it comes to skating, Scott Harrison can’t be beat. Still, he can’t believe it when he’s asked to play for the Golden Bears hockey team. But soon his excitement turns to doubt, then fear, when a resentful teammate ruins his confidence. Scott must confront his nemesis or give up his dream of playing hockey forever.

Face-Off by Chris Forsyth (Lorimer Sports Stories) – Mitch Stevens is a pretty hot hockey player: he’s fast, he’s smart and he’s tough. He plays centre on the A-line of his Toronto Pee Wee team, the Hillcrest Stingers, with his best friend Zack Andermann on right wing. Mitch and Zack have been linemates since they were five, so when they have to compete for a single spot on the league’s select team best friends become fierce rivals. Soon the pressure of competition drives them apart, and they’re forced to choose between their friendship and their ambitions.

Face-Off: Top 10 Lists of Everything in Hockey (Sports Illustrated Kids Top 10 Lists) – The fourth book in the best-selling Sports Illustrated Kids Top 10 series, Face-Off: Top 10 Lists of Everything in Hockey, ranks the best players, shooters, slap shots, and toothless smiles in the NHL. With over 150 different players and teams ranked in more than 15 different categories, this fun look at the greatest aspects of the NHL will serve as the ultimate argument-ender (or debate-starter!) for young hockey fans. 

Bonus Children’s Hockey Book

Face-Off at the Alamo (Screech Owls Book 23) by Roy MacGregor – This one isn’t called Face-Off, however it does have the phrase in the title! The Screech Owls have come to the southern city of San Antonio, Texas, a surprising hotbed of American ice hockey. They are here to compete in the San Antonio Peewee Invitational, and between games can explore the fascinating canals that twist and turn through a maze of shops and restaurants in the city’s downtown. The tournament has been set up to include guided tours of the Alamo, the world’s most famous fort, and for one night the championship team will even get to camp out in the historic site. The Screech Owls discover that the Alamo is America’s greatest symbol of courage and freedom, and when Travis and his friends uncover a plot to destroy it, they must call upon all the courage of the fort’s original defenders.

good books about hockey

Conclusion And YouTube Video

I hope you’ve enjoyed this peek at children’s hockey books named Face-Off. Below, check out my short YouTube video highlighting these books. Have you read any of these fictional books about hockey? Do you have any other children’s hockey books to recommend? Please share in the comments.

50 Exciting Books For Boys Guaranteed To Get Them Reading

50 Exciting Books For Boys Guaranteed To Get Them Reading

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50 Exciting Books For Boys Guaranteed To Get Them Reading

When I was growing up, it seemed as if there weren’t many books for boys. There were some notable exceptions, of course, such as the Hardy Boys series, but many of the novels lining the bookstore shelves were geared toward girls. Nowadays, middle school and high school aged boys have a much wider selection, however, sometimes parents have difficulty persuading them to read a book. Many say they desperately need books for boys who don’t like to read. Kids today have more distractions, and unfortunately they are often drawn more to Fortnite or Roblox than to a book.

On the bright side though, parents and grandparents tell me that the “right” book keeps their boy riveted and wanting more novels in a similar vein. Below, I’ve highlighted 50 books for reluctant boy readers. I made these choices based upon books I’ve read and recommendations from parents, teachers, and boys ages 10-17.

Girls will also enjoy these books, but I’m calling the post “50 Exciting Books For Boys Guaranteed To Get Them Reading” as most of the choices have male protagonists. I’ve divided them into five categories. Some of these “books for boys” could cross over into other categories also, but I categorized them as best as I could. So, let’s begin! Here are 50 books for teen boys and pre-teen boys who may or may not like to read.

Sports Books For Boys

Face-Off by Stacy Juba – T.J. has gotten himself out of the fancy prep school his father picked for him and into the public high school his twin brother Brad attends. Now T.J. is a shining new star on the hockey team where Brad once held the spotlight. And he’s testing his popularity with Brad’s friends, eyeing Brad’s girl and competing to be captain of the team. The whole school is rooting for a big double-strength win…not knowing that their twin ice hockey stars are heating up the ice for a winner takes all face-off.

Offsides by Stacy Juba – Twin hockey stars T.J. and Brad have finally resolved their differences and forged a friendship on and off the ice. Now high school seniors, they focus on landing a commitment to a D1 school. What should have been the best year ever takes a nasty hit when the boys’ parents announce their divorce, and Brad makes a mistake that could impact his game eligibility.

Heat by Mike Lupica Michael Arroyo has a pitching arm that throws serious heat along with aspirations of leading his team all the way to the Little League World Series. But his firepower is nothing compared to the heat Michael faces in his day-to-day life. 

Check out these books for tween and teen boys! #YALit #MgLit #AmReading Click To TweetHeart of a Champion by Carl DeukerJimmy Winter is a born star on the baseball field, and Seth Barnam can only dream of being as talented. Still, the two baseball fanatics have the kind of friendship that should last forever. But when Seth experiences an unthinkable loss, he’s forced to find his own personal strength–on and off the field. 

Ironman by Chris Crutcher – Bo has been at war with his father for as long as he can remember. The rage he feels gives him the energy as a triathlete to press his body to the limit, but it also translates into angry outbursts. Now dangerously close to expulsion from school, Bo has been assigned to Anger Management sessions with the school “truants” and finally has to deal with his long-brewing hatred for his father — before it eats away at him completely.

The Final Four by Paul Volponi March Madness is in full swing, and there are only four teams let in the NCAA basketball championship. The heavily favored Michigan Spartans and the underdog Troy Trojans meet in the first game in the seminfinals, and it’s there that the fates of Malcolm, Roko, Crispin, and M.J. intertwine. As the last moments tick down on the game clock, you’ll learn how each player went from being a kid who loves to shoot hoops to a powerful force in one of the most important games of the year. 

Football Genius by Tim Green Twelve-year-old Troy White has a phenomenal gift: He can predict football plays before they even happen. When Troy’s single mom gets a job working for the Atlanta Falcons, Troy sees this as an opportunity to show what he can do. But first he has to get to the Falcons—and with tight security and a notoriously mean coach, even his mom’s field passes aren’t much help.

Slam! by Walter Dean Myers – Seventeen-year-old Greg “Slam” Harris can do it all on the basketball court, but Slam’s grades aren’t that hot. And when his teachers jam his troubles in his face, he blows up. Slam never doubted himself on the court until he found himself going one-on-one with his own future, and he didn’t have the ball.

Fantasy And Science Fiction Books For Boys

The Maze Runner by James Dashner – A great introduction to the blockbuster series. When Thomas wakes up in the lift, the only thing he can remember is his name. He’s surrounded by strangers—boys whose memories are also gone. Outside the towering stone walls that surround them is a limitless, ever-changing maze. It’s the only way out—and no one’s ever made it through alive. Then a girl arrives. The first girl ever. And the message she delivers is terrifying. 

Warriors #1 Into the Wild by Erin HunterRead the book that began a phenomenon. For generations, four Clans of wild cats have shared the forest according to the laws laid down by their ancestors. But the warrior code has been threatened, and the ThunderClan cats are in danger. In the midst of this turmoil appears an ordinary housecat named Rusty… who may turn out to be the bravest warrior of them all. 

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling – Book 1 in the bestselling series. Harry Potter has no idea how famous he is. But everything changes when Harry is summoned to attend an infamous school for wizards, and he begins to discover some clues about his illustrious birthright. Harry finds himself drawn deep inside a mystical world he never knew existed and closer to his own noble destiny. 

The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan – Book 1 in Percy Jackson and the Olympians – Percy Jackson is a good kid, but he can’t seem to focus on his schoolwork or control his temper. And lately, being away at boarding school is only getting worse as Percy could have sworn his pre-algebra teacher turned into a monster and tried to kill him. 

A Series of Unfortunate Events #1: The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket The Baudelaire children, Violet, Klaus and baby Sunny, are exceedingly unlucky. Their parents have been killed, and they are forced to go and stay with their Uncle Olaf. It soon turns out that Olaf has evil plans for the children. 

House of Dark Shadows by Robert Liparulo When fifteen-year-old Xander and his family move into an old, abandoned house in the middle of a dense forest outside of a small California town, they discover that not only are some of the rooms portals into other places, but that malevolent forces are at work.

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman Nobody Owens, known as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn’t live in a graveyard, being raised by ghosts, with a guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor the dead. There are adventures in the graveyard for a boy—an ancient Indigo Man, a gateway to the abandoned city of ghouls, the strange and terrible Sleer. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, he will be in danger from the man Jack—who has already killed Bod’s family. 

Peter and the StarCatchers: Book One by Dave Barry & Ridley PearsonTreacherous battles with pirates, foreboding thunderstorms at sea, and evocative writing immerses the reader in a story that slowly and finally reveals the secrets and mysteries of the beloved Peter Pan.

The Ruins of Gorlan: Book 1 (Ranger’s Apprentice) by John Flanagan Fifteen-year-old Will, always small for his age, has been chosen as a Ranger’s apprentice. What he doesn’t yet realize is that the Rangers are the protectors of the kingdom. Highly trained in the skills of battle and surveillance, they fight the battles before the battles reach the people. And as Will is about to learn, there is a large battle brewing. 

Eragon: Inheritance, Book I (The Inheritance Cycle 1) by Christopher Paolini  Fifteen-year-old Eragon believes that he is merely a poor farm boy—until his destiny as a Dragon Rider is revealed. Gifted with only an ancient sword, a loyal dragon, and sage advice from an old storyteller, Eragon is soon swept into a dangerous tapestry of magic, glory, and power. Now his choices could save—or destroy—the Empire. 

Michael Vey: The Prisoner of Cell 25 (Book 1) by Richard Paul Evans – Michael thinks his electric powers are unique until he discovers that a cheerleader named Taylor has the same mysterious powers. With the help of Michael’s friend, the three of them set out to discover how Michael and Taylor ended up with their abilities, and their investigation soon brings them to the attention of a powerful group who wants to control the teens—and through them, the world.

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien –  Prelude to The Lord of the Rings. Bilbo Baggins is a hobbit who enjoys a comfortable, unambitious life, rarely traveling any farther than his pantry or cellar. But his contentment is disturbed when the wizard Gandalf and a company of dwarves arrive on his doorstep one day to whisk him away on an adventure.

Action And Adventure Books For Boys

Swindle by Gordon KormanOcean’s 11 . . . with 11-year-olds. After a mean collector named Swindle cons him out of his most valuable baseball card, Griffin Bing must put together a band of misfits to break into Swindle’s compound and recapture the card. 

Crossing the Wire by WIll HobbsIn this riveting, action-packed novel from award-winning author Will Hobbs, a teenage boy hoping to help his loved ones must fight for his life as he makes the dangerous journey across the Mexican border into the United States. 

Hatchet by Gary Paulsen (Brian’s Saga Book 1) – Thirteen-year-old Brian Robeson is traveling by single-engine plane to visit his father for the first time since his parents’ divorce. When the plane crashes, killing the pilot, the sole survivor is Brian. He is alone in the Canadian wilderness with nothing but his clothing, a tattered windbreaker, and the hatchet his mother had given him as a present.

Holes by Louis Sachar (Holes Series) Stanley Yelnats is under a curse. A curse that has followed generations of Yelnatses. Now Stanley has been unjustly sent to a boys’ detention center, Camp Green Lake, where the boys build character by spending all day, every day digging holes exactly five feet wide and five feet deep. Soon, Stanley realizes the warden is looking for something. But what could be buried under a dried-up lake?  

My Side Of The Mountain by Jean Craighead George – Sam Gribley is terribly unhappy living in New York City with his family, so he runs away to the Catskill Mountains to live in the woods—all by himself. With only a penknife, a ball of cord, forty dollars, and some flint and steel, he intends to survive on his own. Sam learns about courage, danger, and independence during his year in the wilderness, a year that changes his life forever.

Unbroken (The Young Adult Adaptation): An Olympian’s Journey from Airman to Castaway to Captive by Laura Hillenbrand  – In this captivating and lavishly illustrated young adult edition of her award-winning #1 New York Times bestseller, Laura Hillenbrand tells the story of a former Olympian’s courage, cunning, and fortitude following his plane crash in enemy territory. This adaptation of Unbroken introduces a new generation to one of history’s most thrilling survival epics.

Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli Jeffrey Lionel “Maniac” Magee might have lived a normal life if a freak accident hadn’t made him an orphan. After living with his unhappy and uptight aunt and uncle for eight years, he decides to run—and not just run away, but run. This is where the myth of Maniac Magee begins, as he changes the lives of a racially divided small town with his amazing and legendary feats. 

Greyson Gray: Camp Legend (The Greyson Gray Series Book 1) by B.C. Tweedt – Sports camp has everything twelve-year-old Greyson Gray needs to distract him from his father’s mysterious disappearance. But when Greyson stumbles upon a terrorist’s sinister plot brewing in the observatory, he suddenly toils with two dueling worlds – one of lurking danger and mystery, the other of competition and awkward romance.

Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer by John Grisham The thrilling young mystery series from internationally bestselling author John Grisham! In the small city of Strattenburg, there are many lawyers, and though he’s only thirteen years old, Theo Boone thinks he’s one of them. Theo knows every judge, policeman, court clerk—and a lot about the law. But Theo finds himself in court much sooner than expected. Because he knows so much—maybe too much—he is suddenly dragged into the middle of a sensational murder trial.  The stakes are high, but Theo won’t stop until justice is served. 

The Apothecary (The Apothecary Series) by Maile MeloyIt’s 1952 and the Scott family has just moved from Los Angeles to London. Here, fourteen-year-old Janie meets a mysterious apothecary and his son, Benjamin Burrows – a fascinating boy who’s not afraid to stand up to authority and dreams of becoming a spy. When Benjamin’s father is kidnapped, Janie and Benjamin must uncover the secrets of the apothecary’s sacred book, the Pharmacopoeia, in order to find him, all while keeping it out of the hands of their enemies—Russian spies in possession of nuclear weapons.

Guts & Glory: The American Civil War by Ben Thompson History buff, Civil War reenactor, and popular blogger Ben Thompson uses his extensive knowledge and vivid storytelling style to bring the Civil War to life in this first book in a thrilling new series featuring incredible people, events, and civilizations.  

Lost in the Barrens by Farley Mowat Awasin and Jamie, brothers in courage, meet a challenge many mountain men could not endure. When their canoe is destroyed by the fury of the rapids, they must face the wilderness with no food and no hope of rescue.  To survive, they build an igloo, battle a towering grizzly bear, track several wolves, slaughter caribou for food and clothing.Two lost huskies they tame bring companionship—and maybe a way home from their dangerous adventure.

Books For Boys About Growing Up

The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton No one ever said life was easy. But Ponyboy is pretty sure that he’s got things figured out. He knows that he can count on his brothers and friends. But not on much else besides trouble with the Socs, a vicious gang of rich kids whose idea of a good time is beating up on “greasers” like Ponyboy. At least he knows what to expect—until the night someone takes things too far. 

Tex by S.E. Hinton Easygoing and reckless, Tex likes everyone and everything, especially his horse and his best friend’s sister. Life with his older brother, Mason, would be just about perfect if only he would stop complaining about Pop, who hasn’t been home in five months.  While Mason worries about paying the bills and getting a basketball scholarship, Tex just seems to attract trouble. When everything seems to be falling apart, how can Tex find a way to keep things together? 

Restart by Gordan Korman – Chase doesn’t remember falling off the roof and doesn’t, in fact, remember anything. He wakes up in a hospital room and suddenly has to learn his whole life all over again. When he gets back to school, some kids treat him like a hero and others are clearly afraid of him. Pretty soon, it’s not only a question of who Chase is—it’s a question of who he was . . . and who he’s going to be.  

The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt Meet Holling Hoodhood, a seventh-grader who must spend Wednesday afternoons with his teacher while the rest of the class has religious instruction. But everyone has bigger things to worry about, like Vietnam. His father wants Holling and his sister to be on their best behavior: the success of his business depends on it. But how can Holling stay out of trouble when he has so much to contend with? As fate sneaks up on him again and again, Holling finds Motivation in the most unexpected places and musters up the courage to embrace his destiny, in spite of himself. 

Wonder by R. J. PalacioAugust Pullman was born with a facial difference that, up until now, has prevented him from going to a mainstream school. Starting 5th grade at Beecher Prep, he wants nothing more than to be treated as an ordinary kid—but his new classmates can’t get past Auggie’s extraordinary face. 

Paper Towns by John Green Quentin Jacobsen has spent a lifetime loving the magnificent Margo Roth Spiegelman from afar. So when she cracks open a window and climbs back into his life—summoning him for an ingenious campaign of revenge—he follows. When their all-nighter ends and a new day breaks, Margo has disappeared. But Q soon learns that there are clues—and they’re for him. Embarking on an exhilarating adventure to find her, the closer Q gets, the less he sees the girl he thought he knew. 

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews – It is a universally acknowledged truth that high school sucks. But on the first day of his senior year, Greg Gaines thinks he’s figured it out. The answer to the basic existential question: How is it possible to exist in a place that sucks so bad? His strategy: remain at the periphery at all times. Keep an insanely low profile. Make mediocre films with the one person who is even sort of his friend, Earl. This plan works for exactly eight hours. Then Greg’s mom forces him to become friends with a girl who has cancer. This brings about the destruction of Greg’s entire life.

Okay for Now by Gary D. Schmidt As Doug struggles to be more than the “skinny thug” that his teachers and the police think him to be, he finds an unlikely ally in fiery young lady Lil Spicer. In Lil, Doug finds the strength to endure an abusive father, the suspicions of a whole town, and the return of his oldest brother, forever scarred, from Vietnam. Together, they find a safe haven in the local library, inspiration in learning about the plates of John James Audubon’s birds, and a hilarious adventure on a Broadway stage. 

Humorous Books For Boys

Crash by Jerry SpinelliCocky seventh-grade super-jock Crash Coogan got his nickname the day he used his first football helmet to knock his cousin Bridget flat on her backside. And he has been running over people ever since, especially Penn Webb, the dweeby, vegetarian Quaker kid who lives down the block. Through the eyes of Crash, readers get a rare glimpse into the life of a bully. 

Big Nate #1: In a Class by Himself by Lincoln Peirce – Nate knows he’s meant for big things. REALLY big things. But things don’t always go your way just because you’re awesome. Nate barely survives his dad’s toxic oatmeal before rushing off to school—minus his lunch. He body slams the no-nonsense principal. He accidentally insults his least favorite teacher. Trouble always seems to find him, but Nate keeps his cool. He knows he’s destined for greatness. A fortune cookie told him so.

Diary of a Wimpy Kid (Wimpy Kid series Book 1) by Jeff Kinney Being a kid can really stink. And no one knows this better than Greg Heffley, who finds himself thrust into middle school, where undersized weaklings share the hallways with kids who are taller, meaner, and already shaving. Author and illustrator Jeff Kinney introduces us to an unlikely hero.

Middle School, The Worst Years of My Life (Middle School series Book 1) by James Patterson and Chris Tebbetts Rafe Khatchadorian has enough problems at home without throwing his first year of middle school into the mix. Luckily, he’s got an ace plan for the best year ever: to break every rule in his school’s oppressive Code of Conduct.  But when Rafe’s game starts to catch up with him, he’ll have to decide if winning is all that matters, or if he’s finally ready to face the rules, bullies, and truths he’s been avoiding. 

Au Revoir, Crazy European Chick by Joe Schreiber – Ferris Bueller meets La Femme Nikita in this funny, action-packed young adult novel. It’s prom night—and Perry just wants to stick to his own plan and finally play a much anticipated gig with his band in the Big Apple. But when his mother makes him take their quiet, geeky Lithuanian exchange student to the prom, he never expects that his ordinary high school guy life will soon turn on its head. 

The Kid Who Ran For President by Dan Gutman – A  fast-paced, funny, and surprising account of a boy’s run for the Oval Office in the year 2000. Under the tutelage of Lane, his brainy friend and self-appointed campaign manager, the affable sixth-grader from Madison, Wisconsin, takes on the Democrats and Republicans as a Third Party candidate who can make waves. 

Play Me Backwards by Adam Selzer A committed slacker enlists the help of his best friend (who may or may not be the devil) to get his act together in this “timelessly true to life” (Booklist) novel filled with humor, awkwardness, and honesty, ideal for fans of The Perks of Being a Wallflower.

The Genius Files #1: Mission Unstoppable by Dan GutmanTwelve-year-old twins Coke and Pepsi McDonald embark on a family vacation you’ll have to read to believe. With the real-kid humor that has earned Dan Gutman millions of fans around the world, and featuring weird-but-true American tourist destinations, The Genius Files is a one-of-a-kind mix of geography and fun. As Coke and Pepsi dodge nefarious villains from the Pez museum in California all the way to the Infinity Room in Wisconsin, black-and-white photographs and maps put young readers right into the action

The Vigilante Poets of Selwyn Academy by Kate HattemerWitty, sarcastic Ethan and his three best friends are students at Selwyn Arts Academy, which has been hijacked by For Art’s Sake, a sleazy reality-television show. In the tradition of Ezra Pound, the foursome secretly writes and distributes a long poem to protest the show. But the forces behind the show are craftier than they seem. The web of betrayal stretches farther than Ethan could have ever imagined, and it’s up to him, his friends, and a heroic gerbil named Baconnaise to save Selwyn.

I Have a Bad Feeling About This by Jeff Strand – Henry Lambert would rather play video games than spend time in the great outdoors—but that doesn’t make him a wuss. Skinny nerd? Fine. But wuss is a little harsh. Sadly, his dad doesn’t agree. Which is why Henry is being shipped off to Strongwoods Survival Camp. Strongwoods isn’t exactly as advertised. It looks like the victim of a zombie apocalypse, the “camp director” is a psycho drill sergeant, and Henry’s sure he saw a sign written in blood…

Conclusion

As you can see, there are many exciting books for boys that don’t like to read. I could’ve included a lot more than fifty books for reluctant boy readers, but had to draw the line somewhere.

Do you have any book recommendations for teen and preteen boys? Please share them in the comments.

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