In doing some recent reading, I came across an interesting book on bullying and the negative effect it can have. The book is called “Give a Boy a Gun” and it is by Todd Strasser.
This book is read in some school systems as a bullying deterrent. It is also obviously correlating what happened in the Columbine, CO shootings to a fictional account of two boys who were bullied and who then go to their school with guns to get revenge.
This is a disturbing and graphic book about the possible violent outcome that bullying has and the damage it does to the psyche of bullying victims. It is a debatable issue as to whether the boys in the story would have acted violently if bullying hadn’t been a factor.
There are very few books willing to tackle this subject head on as Mr. Strasser has done in “Give a Boy a Gun”. It is similar in nature to the movie “Elephant” by Gus Van Sant. It is an excellent read for older pre-teens and teens to help clarify the damage that bullying can do. Because it is violent and scary, I don’t recommend it for younger children. The book is meant to be both shocking and disturbing, but also make a point that bullying can lead to very bad outcomes.