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Three Good Men, Three Great Kids’ Books

19 December 2018

From The National Review:

Men get a bad rap. They’re blamed collectively for rape culture, violence, war, poverty, climate change, and all other manner of global suffering. They’re forced to apologize on college campuses for their chromosomes, anatomy, and athleticism. They’re vilified incessantly in women’s magazines, on women’s talk shows, and at women’s confabs promoting the male-bashing #MeToo movement.

Not me.

This holiday season, I write in praise of three fine gents and their three great children’s books.

. . . .

Saving Montana, by John Paolucci (illustrated by Doris Tomaselli).

A retired detective sergeant from the New York Police Department, John has a thousand-watt smile, central-casting résumé, and heart of gold. He worked narcotics undercover, patrolled housing projects in the South Bronx, supervised a crime-scene unit for the forensic-investigation division, and managed the entire agency’s DNA evidence. He’s a teacher, trainer, expert witness, musician, church-mission volunteer, and animal lover. Saving Montana is the true story of how he met, bonded with, and rescued a “white freckled horse with a mane that was blond” from a kill auction.

In real life and in the book, John moved out of the gritty city to the countryside and shared the transformative power of his beloved Montana with two young children, Anthony and Charlotte. Having seen the worst of humanity over the course of his law-enforcement career and lost some of his closest friends and colleagues on 9/11, John notes that Montana saved him as much as he saved the horse.

. . . .

Kirkus Reviews praised The Pepperoni Palm Tree for its “touch of Seuss” and “inclusive message that sets out to prove everything has value, no matter how strange it seems at first.” On a faraway tropical island where life is a jungle, a palm tree that grows bulging, spicy pepperoni sausages stands out among “normal trees” that bear coconuts and mangoes. Young Frederick befriends the tree, which pines for evidence that it is not alone. In the end, the boy concludes:

“You are the only one in the universe, and that’s what makes you so special.”

. . . .

Lulu is a Rhinoceros is a buoyant father–child collaboration with a life-affirming message, like Jason and Aidan’s book, and a treat for animal lovers of all ages, like John’s. Jason and his daughter, Allison, built a story of embracing differences around their real-life pet bulldog, Lulu, who imagines herself to be a rhinoceros and fights to establish her unique identity. In an interview with Billboard magazine about the book, he expressed a life philosophy that binds the trio together and me to them:

“I’ve always been someone who believes in standing up for the underdog.”

Link to the rest at The National Review

Children's Books

8 Comments to “Three Good Men, Three Great Kids’ Books”

  1. Richard Hershberger

    “Men get a bad rap. They’re blamed collectively for rape culture, violence, war…”

    What a bizarre complaint! Are we to understand from this that actually it is women who do all that fighting and raping? Or perhaps that wars just spontaneously occur, without any human intervention?

    Oh, National Review. Right. This is simply the people in charge ducking responsibility while whining about it.

    • Occasionally, maybe some men might commit acts of violence or rape but these are actually quite rare.
      However, blaming men is a feminist tactic to ruin families, by making it so that daughters mistrust their fathers, and wives their husbands.
      Historically, women were a lot happier when men were in charge of the family and modern studies show that despite feminism‘s claims of liberation, modern women are a lot more unhappy than their predecessors.

      • What modern studies? Links please. Proof please. And there better be a better selection than just random people responding to a participate-if-you-want survey put online by some patriarchally-minded organization looking for proof that its point of view is right, no matter how few women were actually telling the truth when they answered the survey.

        Because I can tell you, as someone who’s been socialized as female most of my life, I’ve not been made in any way happy by any of the male authority figures I’ve suffered in my life. The last one who tried to exert his control over me did so by insulting my weight, and I dumped him, which I assure you, made me very happy. I did not want to end up in the same abusive relationships my mom put herself in because she “needed a man” in her life, something she was socialized to pursue by her era of upbringing.

        So, until you can guarantee me that there are absolutely no abusive men in the world, I’m going to guarantee you that women, as a whole, are much better off without men controlling their lives. Because I can imagine nothing worse than being forced to stay in an abusive marriage because patriarchal society claims women “need” men to control their lives.

    • Or it could be that the author is saying that blaming men as a group for the actions of some is kind of a jerky thing to do.
      Pretty sure you get upset when someone says “women do (x negative behavior that is more common among women than men but is by no means universal among women).”

      • Yes. The “collective” is the clue here in They’re blamed collectively for rape culture, violence, war, poverty, climate change, and all other manner of global suffering.

  2. “women’s confabs promoting the male-bashing #MeToo movement”

    So, being against rape makes you anti-male? No other comment is needed.

    • The#metoo movement started out well enough by going after liberal Hollywood creeps like Harvey Weinstein, but when they started attacking upstanding Christian citizens it developed into a witchhunt.
      Interestingly enough, the woman who started the movement has also been accused of sexual assault against a young boy who she paid to keep it quiet.

      • There’s been a lack of nuance and an over abundance of revolutionary fervor. There is a “bit” of difference between predators abusing power or using sexual behavior to further an agenda and ordinary run of the mill clueless jerks.

        Going after a stereotypical construction worker for wolf whistles or common jerkiness is a far cry from outing the predators at CBS:

        https://www.msn.com/en-us/tv/news/eliza-dushku-i-worked-at-cbs-i-didn’t-want-to-be-sexually-harassed-i-was-fired/ar-BBRbG9t?li=BBnb7Kz

        If people are to continue to cram themselves into ever tighter megacities a new set of mores will need to be negotiated before the law of unintended consequences takes over.

        Overgeneralization leads to overreach and breeds reaction. Metoo# has already shown signs of yielding undesired effects from such overgeneralization.

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