Debbie's World of Books
My book reviews, book news & random rants

Question Regarding the Teenage Male Protagonist

November 15th, 2011 by Debbie's World of Books

I found myself discussing recently my thoughts on a few books that I have read and somewhat enjoyed but in which the main character really bothered me and took down my level of enjoyment a few notches.  I started to notice a trend in which it’s the books which has a male protagonist that often gets on my nerves.  So I started to wonder is it just because as an adult female it is a case of girls are from Venus and boys are from Mars and I just don’t get them?  I’m curious if I’m in the minority in suffering from this?

My main problem is a lot of the guys seem to fit the same profile.  They are rash in both actions and in blurting out every thought in their head without seeming to filter them through their brain first.  One example is Benson from Variant by Robison Wells.  He does the stupidest things that will obviously cause even more trouble not just for himself but for those around him.  He remains pig headed until it’s slapped in front of his face that his actions can have consequences on those around him.  I thought the story line was interesting, the action was well paced but I just couldn’t like Benson.  I likened it to The Maze Runner by James Dashner which also had a fascinating story line but I just couldn’t get into Thomas.  Elder from Across the Universe by Beth Revis was unbelievably irritating and thought he came across as a petulant brat which took away some of my enjoyment from an otherwise amazing book.  Is this really what teenage guys are like?  I’d like to think there are more out there who would think things through a bit more and not always rush headlong into things without thinking.  To be honest it’s been a long time since I’ve been around teenage boys so maybe this is how they really are.

Just to be clear I don’t dislike all books with teenage boy protagonists and in fact some of my favorite series have had some amazing male main characters like the Furnance series by Alexander Gordon Smith(Lockdown Book 1, Solitary Book 2 and Death Sentence Book 3) and one of my favorite books that I just finished was Legend by Marie Lu in which one of the main characters is a 15 year boy named Day.

So what are your thoughts about having a male teenage main character?  Do they irk you?  Are they realistic?  Does it really not matter to you?

Posted in Books

One Response

  1. Linda

    I don’t read a lot of books with teenage boy protagonists but I agree with you. If it wasn’t for Tiny Cooper I don’t think I would have finished Will Grayson, Will Grayson. The one Will was so d*ckish that I wondered if teen boys are like that in real life. But Zusak’s Underdog’s male characters were easier for me to relate to.

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