A must-read for those concerned with the welfare of young men.



How and why one man helped start an all-boys public school in New York City.

Concerned with the number of young men in New York who seemed destined to wind up in prison due to their race and socioeconomic status, Banks decided to try to change the pattern. Along with a group of men called the One Hundred Black Men, they founded the Eagle Academy for Young Men, a public school catering to just boys. From its rough beginnings to its successful current state, Banks, with co-author Lichtenberg (co-author: Know What Makes Them Tick: How to Successfully Negotiate Almost Any Situation, 2010, etc.), gives readers an in-depth look at the methods he used to help at-risk boys become productive, successful members of society. "The Eagle Method is not specific to race or socioeconomic status," writes Banks. "It is a philosophy and a set of practical strategies that can be adapted to embrace and support young men of any background to achieve their promise and potential." School days are longer than the average, with boys attending classes until 5:00 p.m., plus weekend activities. By dismissing students along with the teachers, rather than their peers, who might influence Eagle students into trying alcohol, drugs and other risky behaviors, Eagle students are kept occupied and safe from attitudes that contradict the academy’s model. Students are grouped into houses, similar to those in Harry Potter's world, and they eat together and participate in extracurricular activities together, building a sense of community. Ultimately, the instructors seek to assess the needs of each individual boy and fill in the missing gaps that might prevent a student from achieving his full potential. After 30 years and hundreds of success stories, many of which are included, Banks' method works.

A must-read for those concerned with the welfare of young men.

Pub Date: Sept. 9, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-4767-6095-7

Page Count: 256

Publisher: 37 Ink/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: June 25, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2014

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Carefully researched and chilling, if somewhat overwritten.


Comprehensive, myth-busting examination of the Colorado high-school massacre.

“We remember Columbine as a pair of outcast Goths from the Trench Coat Mafia snapping and tearing through their high school hunting down jocks to settle a long-running feud. Almost none of that happened,” writes Cullen, a Denver-based journalist who has spent the past ten years investigating the 1999 attack. In fact, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold conceived of their act not as a targeted school shooting but as an elaborate three-part act of terrorism. First, propane bombs planted in the cafeteria would erupt during lunchtime, indiscriminately slaughtering hundreds of students. The killers, positioned outside the school’s main entrance, would then mow down fleeing survivors. Finally, after the media and rescue workers had arrived, timed bombs in the killers’ cars would explode, wiping out hundreds more. It was only when the bombs in the cafeteria failed to detonate that the killers entered the high school with sawed-off shotguns blazing. Drawing on a wealth of journals, videotapes, police reports and personal interviews, Cullen sketches multifaceted portraits of the killers and the surviving community. He portrays Harris as a calculating, egocentric psychopath, someone who labeled his journal “The Book of God” and harbored fantasies of exterminating the entire human race. In contrast, Klebold was a suicidal depressive, prone to fits of rage and extreme self-loathing. Together they forged a combustible and unequal alliance, with Harris channeling Klebold’s frustration and anger into his sadistic plans. The unnerving narrative is too often undermined by the author’s distracting tendency to weave the killers’ expressions into his sentences—for example, “The boys were shooting off their pipe bombs by then, and, man, were those things badass.” Cullen is better at depicting the attack’s aftermath. Poignant sections devoted to the survivors probe the myriad ways that individuals cope with grief and struggle to interpret and make sense of tragedy.

Carefully researched and chilling, if somewhat overwritten.

Pub Date: April 6, 2009

ISBN: 978-0-446-54693-5

Page Count: 406

Publisher: Twelve

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2009

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The sub-title of this book is "Reflections on Education with Special Reference to the Teaching of English in the Upper Forms of Schools." But one finds in it little about education, and less about the teaching of English. Nor is this volume a defense of the Christian faith similar to other books from the pen of C. S. Lewis. The three lectures comprising the book are rather rambling talks about life and literature and philosophy. Those who have come to expect from Lewis penetrating satire and a subtle sense of humor, used to buttress a real Christian faith, will be disappointed.

Pub Date: April 8, 1947

ISBN: 1609421477

Page Count: -

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 17, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1947

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