I have finished my book, and here is my double entry journal.
I think that the theme of About a Boy is to accept the things that you have to live with on your own age. I would say that for Marcus that would be that he must not worry so much about his mother. He is a child and he is supposed to live like any other child. For Will, it would be that he must stop to act like a child and start to grow up and be the adult he’s supposed to be.
The book is also about development. And how Marcus and will finds themselves.
Example of how Marcus has developed from being a mommy boy to a more independent person; page 307:
“Hey, Fiona. Why don’t you get your sheet music out, and we can murder Both Sides Now?”
“Would you like to?”
“Yeah. Sure.” But he was watching Marcus, whose expression was that of a boy who had been asked to dance naked before a mixed audience o supermodels and cousins.
“Please, Mum. Don`t”
“don’t be silly, You love singing. you love Joni Mitchell.”
“I don’t. not anymore. I bloody hate Joni Mitchell.”
Will knew then, beyond any shadow of a doubt, that Marcus would be OK.
You can see here how Marcus denied his mother and started to choose his own path.
The novel takes place in the years around 1994 in London. Most of the action takes place at Marcus home, at school, and in Wills home.
“And he didn’t know. His mum was sad, he knew that– she cried a lot now, more than she did before they moved to london— but he had no idea whether that was anything to do with boyfriend”
About a boy is told from two different points of view. The first point of view is through Marcus, a 12-year-old boy who is considered to be ‘uncool’ by other children, and who lives with his mother, Fiona. Marcus has a lot of responsibilities for a young boy since his mum suffers from depression and often finds it difficult to cope with life.
The second point of view is Will. A 36-year-old single man who considers himself to be ‘cool’. Will is independently wealthy, because his father wrote a famous Christmas song years ago, and Will receives a lot of money in royalties. Will has no responsibilities – in fact, he runs away at the first sign of commitment or responsibility. While his friends are marrying and having children, Will continues to live like a teenager and feels sorry for his friends because he thinks that they have lost their freedom.
The characters are developing throughout the book. At the beginning of the book, Will is not involved with others. His relationships don’t last very long and he feels it is unnecessary to care about others. When Will meets Marcus his view upon his isolation (which he saw as the best way of living) is changed. He let Marcus become a part of his life and therefore it is too late to retreat. Thanks to Marcus he meets new people and he falls in love. He opens his heart for Rachel and realizes he cannot live without other people around him.
Then there is Marcus. At the beginning of the story, Marcus is a shy, insecure boy with a deranged mother. He wears outdated clothes and does not fit in with the popular kids at his school. However, Will helps him to become more modern by, for example, buying brand new trainers. You could say that the blank, outdated Marcus becomes more modern and cool during the book. But not only his clothing undergoes a magnificent change. With regards to his new wardrobe, Marcus gets many new friends and does not feel insecure anymore. His fear of his mother committing suicide while he is not paying attention is disappearing because he realizes now that he is not alone. After all, Marcus has his friends and Will to look after him and his mother.
Has your own childhood affected the book?
what else has inspired det book?
What is your favorite character?
Would you read another book by the author?
How does the main character change through the book?
There are many topics, what is your favorite and the most important one?
You are an expert on literature, what do you think about the books?
To the expert, do you have any questions to authors?
Is it a turning point in the book?
If a class should read the book, why would exactly your book be the one to read?
Can you compare the books? expert