8-year-old gets sexist kids' books yanked from bookstore


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These must have been time warped here from 1974, because there is no publisher stupid enough to do this today.


Wow . . . it would be interesting and instructive to track down the folks responsible for writing and marketing these. I bet the “marketing” came first.

I’d also be interested how the same-titled pieces in the books compare. Are the boys’ and girls’ tactics vs. vampires the same, for example?

While my 11 year old (girl) would love both books, our other one would recoil at the subjects in the ‘boys’ book.

Sexist and generalizing, yeah, sure. But I’m just not getting that blood boiling vibe. It’s a good opportunity to talk to your kids about the issue of stereotyping and being open to all experiences.


I’ve seen a similar book before, but it was just called The Complete Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook. It had a few social crises (how to escape from a bad date, how to thwart an affectionate costumed mascot), but it was mainly the same as the book for boys.

The book for girls is a parody, isn’t it? It has to be.

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In before “But but that’s CENSORSHIP!!” trolls.

Cuz yeah, the difference between those two T of Contents is horrific.


Eight year olds, Dude.


Looks like only boys get to deal with vampires (the post may only be a partial list). Zombies seem to be gender neutral except for scale - boys get to deal with an invasion, girls an attack. I would hope that the advice for an invasion and attack are different but that seems to be the easiest comparison.

After reading through each book’s topics I really feel the girl’s book is the only one offers any actual advice boy and girls could use. They really should be merged into one publication.


Is it me, or do the the tips “for girls” have (at least in theory) a higher chance of being actually useful?

The stereotyping is… urghh… but the tips for boys seem to be mainly for rather idiotic, escapist stuff.


The covers are cropped in this image, but a quick search of Amazon shows that these titles were published by respected publisher Scholastic (of Harry Potter fame) in…wait for it…2012.

These strike me as the kind of books that are usually written by legions of uncredited freelancers to fill a perceived marketing slot (the New Yorker had a fascinating article on how this kind of slush gets churned out, although my memory is failing me about when the article appeared), although there is a single author and illustrator credited.


Yep, that’s pretty sad. Maybe they could kinda sorta get away with it if the juxtaposition wasn’t so stark.

EDIT: I guess Scholastic is a little too powerful to be subdued by the angry mob with pitchforks.

The covers are cropped in this image, but a quick search of Amazon shows that these titles were published by respected publisher Scholastic (of Harry Potter fame)…

Yes, because before Harry Potter, no one heard of Scholastic. Now, all I hear from the kids today is Scholatics this and Scholastic that… :wink:


New additions for banned book week - getting books taken down for sale is OK when they interfere with my personal viewpoint edition.


Well, that’s kinda always the excuse. Funny, though, that people here need to be reminded of it.


Welp, no need to sex your crocodile; you just need to sex it’s dinner!


You’re right. I would have read the boys’ book for fun, but I would have made actual use of a lot of the girls’ book. But then, I habitually read my mother’s copies of Women’s Day and Family Circle religiously every month from the age of, like, seven. And I’d begin with the household tips. Huh. Until fairly recently, I even remembered the names of those particular columns. Anyway, I was the youngest male fan of Heloise I ever met.


It’s not just that they’re sexist ideas (would they not be better labelled as “How to survive dangerous things” and “how to survive social things” rather than ‘boys’ and ‘girls’) but it’s that the girls’ cover is also entirely misleading. It promises abseiling and danger and is actually a rather nice illustration of a girl in normal clothes doing groovy things, and then it turns out to be about bloody babysitting and guff. I’d have been livid if I’d been duped by that as an eight year old.


The real tragedy here is that it has a pretty cool comic book format that’s totally wasted on poorly-written material. I’d love to see a Dangerous Book for Boys/Girls illustrated like a graphic novel.


This is the liberal version of the recent attempt to ban The Invisible Man. See kids?
[mod edit: removed ableist slur]