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CriticasGr 5-7-This is a great guide for boys on the verge of manhood. Not only does it describe the changes boys go through during puberty but also describes what girls experience. By emphasizing awareness of girls, the author sets the stage for the discussion of sex. Because sex is such a pressing subject for young male readers, Gravelle explains the steps in intercourse and reproduction in detail, and then goes into depth about the different means of contraception. She also talks about harmful STDs and the risks of unprotected sex. Despite these sobering and possibly discouraging topics, the author keeps the tone light and conversational. The book also contains comments from various men between the ages of 25 and 62 about what they would have done differently during their adolescence. Society takes it for granted that young boys will automatically know everything there is to know about growing up and deal fully with those changes. But, in fact, they are as unsure and worried as girls are. This book can serve as a source of information for them. It covers everything from the changing voice to AIDS. The use of the informal tu makes readers feel comfortable with this uncomfortable topic. Recommended for all collections and bookstores.
—I. Mirthala Garza, Blackshear Elementary, Austin, TX Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.