“No boy is an island and the bravest way to face problems is to talk and to listen.”
‘The Girls‘ by Lauren Ace and Jenny Løvlie is one of our all-time favourite children’s books. It celebrates female friendship in such a relatable way and instantly made me want to buy copies for all of my childhood friends. When I shared my review back in 2018 the response was universal – we need this for boys too! It’s been a long time coming but ‘The Boys’ is finally here, and it is everything I hoped it would be.
The story is about four boys who are as close as brothers. Rey, Nattie, Bobby and Tam spend much of their childhood playing on their favourite beach under the watchful eyes of their mothers (who will look very familiar to you if you have read The Girls!). Each boy is very different but together they make a phenomenal team. The foursome build sandcastles, fly kites, learn how to swim and gather to tell stories around the campfire. Their worlds are completely entwined and they revel in each others company.
But as the years pass the relationship between the four boys starts to shift. Hormones, school, new friendships and budding romances all conspire to drive a wedge between them as they each struggle to find their place in the world.
Without each other the boys feel lost and they long for the easy affection they shared as children. Talking about feelings can be tough, especially for boys who live in a society where showing emotion is equated with weakness. However, when they finally open up to each other they learn that honesty and vulnerabilty makes their friendship stronger than ever.
I honestly cannot recommend this warm and wonderful book highly enough. It’s a beautiful celebration of friendship which teaches boys that it’s ok to feel sad, to reach out for help and to lean on your friends when you need it.
And just as The Girls isn’t just a book for girls, this isn’t just a book for boys. All children need to have these diverse and positive representations of friendship on their bookshelf.
Buy from Bookshop.org and support independent bookshops: https://uk.bookshop.org/a/155/9781838911591
Buy from Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/3dPdlXL
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Disclosure: The publisher provided us with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.