This book is an organized collection of newspaper columns and blog posts about Rachel Balducci’s adventures with her five sons. (You can read her blog at Testosterhome.) Although she never comes out and states it directly, she writes as though she did not grow up surrounded by juvenile male hormones. Either that, or she is very talented at making the reader believe that she never before witnessed the bizarre behaviors of small boys.
Rather than choose a chronological approach to her narratives, she has cleverly divided the book into topical sections, such as Proper Care and Feeding, Family Togetherness, Keeping Up Appearances, You Know You’re With Boys When, etc. The stories in each division describe various events concerning her sons that fit the particular category. She does a tremendous job keeping things clear without cluttering the page with too many details about each boy. The stories take care of themselves, and the reader never feels compelled to pay strict attention to the minutiae.
As expected, these are designed to be lighthearted, humorous and uplifting pieces. The author wants only to share the joy and wonder she is experiencing with her family. For me, however, that is also the biggest drawback to this work. It is simply too happy. I grew up with three brothers and have two sons of my own. Yes, life with young men is plenty funny, but there is also a lot of anger, revenge and blood. Of course, I am not advocating anyone writing such gory details in a book of this nature, but I would have appreciated a few more rough edges than what I found.