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The Dangerous Book for Boys

The Dangerous Book for Boys Lowest new price: $7.58
Lowest used price: $1.44
List price: $16.99
Author: Conn Iggulden
Brand: William Morrow

The bestselling book for every boy from eight to eighty, covering essential boyhood skills such as building tree houses*, learning how to fish, finding true north, and even answering the age old question of what the big deal with girls is.

In this digital age there is still a place for knots, skimming stones and stories of incredible courage. This book recaptures Sunday afternoons, stimulates curiosity, and makes for great father-son activities. The brothers Conn and Hal have put together a wonderful collection of all things that make being young or young at heart fun—building go-carts and electromagnets, identifying insects and spiders, and flying the world's best paper airplanes.

The completely revised American Edition includes:

The Greatest Paper Airplane in the World
The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World
The Five Knots Every Boy Should Know
Stickball
Slingshots
Fossils
Building a Treehouse*
Making a Bow and Arrow
Fishing (revised with US Fish)
Timers and Tripwires
Baseball's "Most Valuable Players"
Famous Battles-Including Lexington and Concord, The Alamo, and Gettysburg
Spies-Codes and Ciphers
Making a Go-Cart
Navajo Code Talkers' Dictionary
Girls
Cloud Formations
The States of the U.S.
Mountains of the U.S.
Navigation
The Declaration of Independence
Skimming Stones
Making a Periscope
The Ten Commandments
Common US Trees
Timeline of American History

Equal parts droll and gorgeous nostalgia book and heartfelt plea for a renewed sense of adventure in the lives of boys and men, Conn and Hal Iggulden's The Dangerous Book for Boys became a mammoth bestseller in the United Kingdom in 2006. Adapted, in moderation, for American customs in this edition (cricket is gone, rugby remains; conkers are out, Navajo Code Talkers in), The Dangerous Book is a guide book for dads as well as their sons, as a reminder of lore and technique that have not yet been completely lost to the digital age. Recall the adventures of Scott of the Antarctic and the Battle of the Somme, relearn how to palm a coin, tan a skin, and, most charmingly, wrap a package in brown paper and string. The book's ambitions are both modest and winningly optimistic: you get the sense that by learning how to place a splint or write in invisible ink, a boy might be prepared for anything, even girls (which warrant a small but wise chapter of their own).

Inside The Dangerous Book for Boys


Figure 8 Knot

Sheet Bend Knot


The Battle of Waterloo

Questions for Conn Iggulden

Conn and Hal Iggulden are two brothers who have not forgotten what it was like to be boys. Conn taught for many years before becoming one of the most admired and popular young historical novelists with his Emperor series, based on the life of Julius Caesar, and his newly embarked series on Genghis Khan, while Hal is a theater director. We asked Conn about their collaboration.

Amazon.com: It's difficult to describe what a phenomenon The Dangerous Book for Boys was in the UK last year. When I would check the bestseller list on our sister site, Amazon.co.uk, there would be, along with your book, which spent much of the year at the top of the list, a half-dozen apparent knockoff books of similar boy knowledge. Clearly, you tapped into something big. What do you think it was?

Iggulden: In a word, fathers. I am one myself and I think we've become aware that the whole "health and safety" overprotective culture isn't doing our sons any favors. Boys need to learn about risk. They need to fall off things occasionally, or--and this is the important bit--they'll take worse risks on their own. If we do away with challenging playgrounds and cancel school trips for fear of being sued, we don't end up with safer boys--we end up with them walking on train tracks. In the long run, it's not safe at all to keep our boys in the house with a Playstation. It's not good for their health or their safety.

You only have to push a boy on a swing to see how much enjoys the thrill of danger. It's hard-wired. Remove any opportunity to test his courage and they'll find ways to test themselves that will be seriously dangerous for everyone around them. I think of it like playing the lottery--someone has to say "Look, you won't win--and your children won't be hurt. Relax. It won't be you."

I think that's the core of the book's success. It isn't just a collection of things to do. The heroic stories alone are something we haven't had for too long. It isn't about climbing Everest, but it is an attitude, a philosophy for fathers and sons. Our institutions are too wrapped up in terror over being sued--so we have to do things with them ourselves. This book isn't a bad place to start.

As for knockoff books--great. They'll give my son something to read that doesn't involve him learning a dull moral lesson of some kind--just enjoying an adventure or learning skills and crafts so that he has a feeling of competence and confidence--just as we have.

Amazon.com: You made some changes for the U.S. edition, and I for one am sorry that you have removed the section on conkers, if only because it's such a lovely and mysterious word. What are (or what is) conkers?

Iggulden: Horse chestnuts strung on a shoelace and knocked against one another until they shatter. In the entire history of the world, no one has ever been hurt by a conker, but it's still been banned by some British schools, just in case. Another school banned paper airplanes. Honestly, it's enough to make you weep, if I did that sort of thing, which I try not to. Reading Jane Austen is still allowed, however.

Amazon.com: What knowledge did you decide was important to add for American boys? I notice in both editions you have an excellent and useful section on table football, as played with coins. Is paper football strictly an American pastime? I'm not sure I could have gotten through the fourth grade without it.

Iggulden: I like knowing the details of battles, so Gettysburg and the Alamo had to go in, along with the Gettysburg address, stickball, state capitals, U.S. mountains, American trees, insects, U.S. historical timelines, and a lot of others. Navajo code talkers of WWII is a great chapter. It probably helps that I am a huge fan of America. It was only while rewriting for the U.S. that I realized how many positive references there already are. You have NASA and NASA trumps almost anything.

As for paper football, ever since I thought of putting the book together, people keep saying things like "You have rockets in there, yes? Everyone loves rockets!" Paper football is the first American one, but there will be many others. No book in the world is long enough to put them all in--unless we do a sequel, of course.

Amazon.com: Do you think The Dangerous Book for Boys is being read by actual boys, or only by nostalgic adults? Have you seen boys getting up from their Xboxes to go outside and perform first aid or tan animal skins or build go-carts?

Iggulden: I've had a lot of emails and letters from boys who loved the book--as well as fathers. I've had responses from kids as young as ten and an old man of 87, who pointed out a problem with the shadow stick that we've since changed. The thing to remember is that we may be older and more cynical every year, but boys simply aren't. If they are given the chance to make a go-cart with their dad, they jump at it. Mine did. Nothing gives me more pleasure than to know the book is being used with fathers and sons together, trying things out. Nothing is more valuable to a boy than time with his dad, learning something fun--or something difficult. That's part of the attitude too. If it's hard, you don't make it easy, you grab it by the throat and hang on for as long as it takes.

The book is often bought by fathers, of course. Their sons don't know Scott of the Antarctic is a great adventure story. How could they if it isn't taught any more? Good, heroic stories don't appear much in modern school curriculums--and then we wonder why boys don't seem interested.

Amazon.com: And finally, on to the important questions: Should Pluto still be a planet? And what was the best dinosaur?

Iggulden: Pluto is a planet. I know there are scientists who say it isn't, but it's big enough to be round and it has a moon, for crying out loud. Of course it's a planet. Give it ten years and they'll be agreeing with me again.

As for the best dinosaur, it depends what you mean by best. For sheer perfection, it probably has to be the shark and the crocodile. Modern ones are smaller but their record for sheer survival is pretty impressive. I only hope humanity can do as well. The only thing that will stop us is worrying too much.

Features:

  • William Morrow Company

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SAS Survival Handbook, Third Edition: The Ultimate Guide to Surviving Anywhere

SAS Survival Handbook, Third Edition: The Ultimate Guide to Surviving Anywhere Lowest new price: $8.48
Lowest used price: $14.86
List price: $21.99
Author: John Wiseman
Brand: Harper Collins Pub

The ultimate guide to surviving anywhere, now updated with more than 100 pages of additional material, including a new chapter on urban survival

"A classic outdoor manual [that] addresses every conceivable disaster scenario. Don’t leave home without it”--Outside magazine

Revised to reflect the latest in survival knowledge and technology, and covering new topics such as urban survival and terrorism, the multimillion-copy worldwide bestseller SAS Survival Handbook by John "Lofty" Wiseman is the definitive resource for all campers, hikers, and outdoor adventurers. From basic campcraft and navigation to fear management and strategies for coping with any type of disaster, this complete course includes:

Being prepared: Understanding basic survival skills, like reading the weather, and preparation essentials, such as a pocket survival kit.

Making camp: Finding the best location, constructing the appropriate shelter, organizing camp, staying warm, and creating tools.

Food: What to eat, what to avoid, where to find it, and how to prepare it.

First aid: A comprehensive course in emergency/wilderness medicine, including how to maximize survival in any climate or when injured.

Disaster survival: How to react in the face of natural disasters and hostile situations—and how to survive if all services and supplies are cut off.

Self-defense: Arming yourself with basic hand-to-hand combat techniques.

Security: Protecting your family and property from intrusion, break-ins, and theft.

Climate & terrain: Overcoming any location, from the tropics to the poles, from the desert to the mountains and sea.

Features:

  • Harper Collins Pub Sas Survival Handbook Revised by John Wiseman - 9780062378071

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The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit

The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit Lowest new price: $13.95
Lowest used price: $10.56
List price: $25.95
Author: Michael Finkel
Brand: Michael Finkel

Many people dream of escaping modern life, but most will never act on it. This is the remarkable true story of a man who lived alone in the woods of Maine for 27 years, making this dream a reality—not out of anger at the world, but simply because he preferred to live on his own. 

New York Times bestseller

In 1986, a shy and intelligent twenty-year-old named Christopher Knight left his home in Massachusetts, drove to Maine, and disappeared into the forest. He would not have a conversation with another human being until nearly three decades later, when he was arrested for stealing food. Living in a tent even through brutal winters, he had survived by his wits and courage, developing ingenious ways to store edibles and water, and to avoid freezing to death. He broke into nearby cottages for food, clothing, reading material, and other provisions, taking only what he needed but terrifying a community never able to solve the mysterious burglaries. Based on extensive interviews with Knight himself, this is a vividly detailed account of his secluded life—why did he leave? what did he learn?—as well as the challenges he has faced since returning to the world. It is a gripping story of survival that asks fundamental questions about solitude, community, and what makes a good life, and a deeply moving portrait of a man who was determined to live his own way, and succeeded.

Features:

  • The Stranger in the Woods The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit

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The Boys' Book Of Survival (How To Survive Anything, Anywhere)

The Boys' Book Of Survival (How To Survive Anything, Anywhere) Lowest new price: $10.99
Lowest used price: $12.95
List price: $10.99
Author: Scholastic
Brand: Scholastic Nonfiction

Now you, too, can survive anything, anywhere!

Lost in the desert? Stuck in quicksand? Confronted by a man-eating tiger? Trapped at a school dance? Fear not, brave reader! With this essential survival guide, you'll find a way to get yourself out of every imaginable predicament, whether it's an avalanche or a zombie invasion!

How to survive anything all in one handy book! Inside you'll find out how to treat a snakebite, send an SOS message, track an animal, make a map, and build a ladder. Find out how to survive a school dance, a shopping trip with your mom, a pop quiz, and a shark attack!

Features:

  • The Boys Book Of Survival How To Survive Anything Anywhere

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Survival Hacks: Over 200 Ways to Use Everyday Items for Wilderness Survival

Survival Hacks: Over 200 Ways to Use Everyday Items for Wilderness Survival Lowest new price: $5.82
Lowest used price: $5.82
List price: $16.99
Author: Creek Stewart
Brand: Stewart Creek

Turn everyday items into survival necessities!

Would you be prepared if you needed to survive in the wilderness? Survival expert Creek Stewart shares his cache of practical, easy-to-follow tricks to help you transform everyday items into valuable gear that can save your life. Survival Hacks takes you step-by-step through transforming simple objects like soda tabs and plant leaves into essential survival tools.

This rough-and-rugged guide covers everything from small-scale hacks, like using sticks and rope to make a table, to the big stuff, like creating a one-person emergency shelter from a trash bag or purifying dirty water using a plastic bottle and the sun. And you can be ready anywhere you go with everyday carry kits, pocket-sized survival kits, so you're never without the essential tools you need to make it on your own. Being prepared can make the difference when it comes to your survival in an emergency. And Survival Hacks makes it a whole lot easier.

Features:

  • Survival Hacks Over 200 Ways to Use Everyday Items for Wilderness Survival

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So Much S'more to Do: Over 50 Variations of the Campfire Classic

So Much S'more to Do: Over 50 Variations of the Campfire Classic Lowest new price: $4.31
Lowest used price: $1.22
List price: $6.95
Author: Becky Rasmussen
Brand: Adventure Publications Inc.

S’mores are as much a part of camping as tents and sleeping bags, but have you ever wondered how to make this tasty treat even better? Becky Rasmussen provides the answer with 55 simple twists―from holiday recipes to “spirited” s’mores―that will have you begging for s’more! Try delectable desserts like Brownie S’mores, Peanut Butter & Banana S’mores, and Tiramisu S’mores. As added bonuses, the book includes a marshmallow toasting guide, safety tips, clean-up tips, and more. Plus, it’s handy size makes it convenient to bring along on your next outing!

Features:

  • Used Book in Good Condition

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A Year in the Wilderness: Bearing Witness in the Boundary Waters

A Year in the Wilderness: Bearing Witness in the Boundary Waters Lowest new price: $21.60
Lowest used price: $23.75
List price: $35.00
Author: Amy Freeman

From adventurers and educators Dave and Amy Freeman, a passionate and beautifully illustrated account of a year in the Boundary Waters.



The Boundary Waters are one of our national treasures, yet their existence has been consistently threatened. When the Freemans learned of mining in the area’s watershed, they decided to take action―by spending a year in the wilderness. This book tells the story of their adventure in northern Minnesota: of loons whistling under a moonrise, of mushrooms cooked over a fire, of a pine marten stalking a hare through winter’s first snowfall. In visceral language and gorgeous photos, the Freemans show us the value of wilderness and why we must protect it.



With the magic―and urgent message―that have brought an international audience to the Freemans’ cause, A Year in the Wilderness is a rousing cry of witness activism and a stunning tribute to this special region.

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The Total Outdoorsman Manual (10th Anniversary Edition) (Field & Stream)

The Total Outdoorsman Manual (10th Anniversary Edition) (Field & Stream) Lowest new price: $11.48
Lowest used price: $5.60
List price: $29.00
Author: T. Edward Nickens
Brand: T Edward Nickens

The Total Outdoorsman Manual is the ultimate guide book for the outdoors enthusiast, packed with hundreds of practical tips and techniques from T. Edward Nickens and the experts at Field & Stream magazine, that is guaranteed to improve your hunting, fishing, camping and survival skills. This special edition, issued for the 10th anniversary of the Total Outdoorsman Challenge has all the content readers love, plus 50 new activities that can help anyone compete in the Challenge.

With practical information for both the beginner and advanced outdoorsman, the book is an authoritative, comprehensive, and entertaining guide that will enable anyone to master the outdoors and hunt, fish, and camp like an expert. The 10th anniversary edition includes a chapter of new tricks and skills from Total Outdoorsman Challenge contestants.
HUNT BETTER How to track a buck, make the toughest shots, master bowhunting and knife skills, and haul, butcher, and cook wild game.
FISH SMARTER Advice on the best techniques for flyfishing, baitcasting, and spinning, as well as surefire ways to get the most out of your motorboat, canoe, or kayak.
SURVIVE ANYTHING Whether you fall through thick ice, are swept away by a raging river, or have a stare down with an angry bear, these skills means the difference between life and death.
CAMP ANYWHERE Tested and proven expert tips to help you stay warm, eat well, and build a fire in any situation in record time.
WIN

Field & Stream
For more than 100 years, Field & Stream magazine has provided expert advice on every aspect of the outdoor life, including hunting, fishing, conservation, and wilderness survival. The magazine's annual Total Outdoorsman issue is one of its most popular, read by over nine million sporting enthusiasts. The Total Outdoorsman Challenge brings together avid hunters and anglers from around the country to demonstrate their skills and compete for big bucks and bigger glory. Winners are all-around hunters, fishermen, and survivors with a flair for problem-solving and the skills to prevail.

Features:

  • The Total Outdoorsman Manual 10th Anniversary Edition

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Living the Airstream Life

Living the Airstream Life Lowest new price: $22.69
Lowest used price: $16.95
List price: $35.00
Author: Karen Flett
Brand: Ingramcontent

Illustrated with rare and exclusive images from the official company archives, an authoritative and entertaining guide to the wildly popular, beautifully designed luxury recreational vehicle that has become a cultural icon, embodying the American spirit of freedom and adventure—and the ideal in mobile living.

With its distinctive silver-bullet shaped profile, the Airstream has been an integral part of the American recreational landscape for more than eighty-five years. Since the 1930s, thousands of Americans have used it as a personal canvas to paint their own unique story as they’ve traveled the road of life, and today, these stunning, nostalgia-laden vehicles are more popular than ever. In Living the Airstream Life, Karen Flett tells the unique story of the designers who have transformed the brand into a mainstay of American life and the dreamers who have found their home, and their heart, in an Airstream.

Living the Airstream Life is a tour along the diverse roads aficionados have taken in chasing their Airstream dreams. Stunning color photographs featuring new and vintage versions and compelling stories capture the allure of the Airstream and offer advice and insight on the practicalities of adopting this lifestyle. With spectacular photography and compelling stories, Living the Airstream Life offers inspiration for those actively pursuing the dream of life on the road—whether for permanent living or as a temporary escape from the daily grind—and everyone who wants to live vicariously through those who dare.

Features:

  • Embodying the American spirit of freedom and adventure since the 1930s!
  • Stunning photos of new and vintage versions.
  • Compelling stories capture the allure--along with advice and insight on adopting the Airstream lifestyle.
  • Inspiration for those actively pursuing the dream of life on the road and for everyone who likes to live vicariously through those who dare.
  • Hardcover. 160 pages.

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The Bushcraft Boxed Set: Bushcraft 101; Advanced Bushcraft; The Bushcraft Field Guide to Trapping, Gathering, & Cooking in the Wild; Bushcraft First Aid

The Bushcraft Boxed Set: Bushcraft 101; Advanced Bushcraft; The Bushcraft Field Guide to Trapping, Gathering, & Cooking in the Wild; Bushcraft First Aid Lowest new price: $60.99
List price: $67.99
Author: Dave Canterbury

The Bushcraft Boxed Set brings together four titles from wilderness expert and New York Times bestselling author Dave Canterbury.

The collection includes:

Bushcraft 101: The primer to wilderness survival based on the author’s 5Cs of Survivability (cutting tools, covering, combustion devices, containers, and cordages)

Advanced Bushcraft: Takes it to the next level with self-reliance skills that teach you how to survive with little to no equipment

The Bushcraft Guide to Trapping, Gathering, and Cooking in the Wild: Provides everything you need to know about packing, finding, and preparing food while trekking

Bushcraft First Aid: Written with Jason A. Hunt, PhD, it’s the go-to first aid resource for anyone headed into the woods

With this boxed set, you’ll be prepped and ready for your next outdoor adventure—wherever it takes you!

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