Man in the Making by Rick Johnson

“As your son grows toward manhood, you can instill in him the values and character traits he will need to succeed. Highlighting famous men throughout history and the character trait that made each an outstanding model of manhood, parenting expert Rick Johnson gives you strategies to help mold your son into an honorable man. Johnson describes the lives of men such as

  • George Washington
  • Abraham Lincoln
  • Benjamin Franklin

…and more,” reads the back of the book.



Mr. Johnson has a very unique approach to this book. I love how he uses specific people and shows their character, and then follows through how each man learned the character trait and used it to succeed in life.

I must say, right off the bat I was disappointed in the introduction when Mr. Johnson said, “…I did not discuss [in this book] developing faith or spirituality within your son. Again, not because I do not believe it is vitally important, but because I wanted this book to be one that will reach parents of all faith walks and belief systems. I wanted the focus to be on raising sons to become good men, not necessarily ‘religious’ ones.” So, I felt like he shot through everything in which he preceded this comment. He said faith is vitally important, and was very visible in each of these men’s lives. Also, as a Christian, I am not at all interested in raising my sons to be “good,” but to be “godly.” So, that said, on to the positive!

I really enjoyed reading super-short biographies of each of these men who greatly impacted history. It was amazing to see how far some of them came, and how they “beat the odds” and made a difference in the world.

I was particularly interested in the chapter on Compassion and Empathy, highlighting the life of George Muller. In this chapter, the author tells us that he believes hunting is one of the greatest way to teach sons about compassion, and appreciation for life. Think about it, many boys today never set foot in the woods. They spend their days playing violent video games. These games create a very false perception of life and death. Because young men may never see what real life is like, and what it’s like to take it, they become more violent. But let the boy shoot a deer or a squirrel, and see it die. It will help him appreciate life, and see a true picture of what happens when you shoot a gun, or a bow and arrow.

I also really loved the chapter about David, and how he was a Warrior-Poet. He was such a tough man, doing battle, killing thousands. But all you have to do is read through the Psalms and you see his tender side. It is not bad to let boys participate in the arts, or in music. It is good for them. They need to create, and learn that it doesn’t mean they are sissy. But let them be rough-and-tumble. The book mentioned that society has become so feminized that often in schools, instead of two boys scuffling on the playground, they are forced to go to their superiors (usually a woman), to solve the problem. Not that we want to encourage them to be violent! Or to be bullies! But let them grow up to be men!

I think a really, really good point of this book is that the author points out that neither men, nor women are superior in our culture. God set man as the head of a home, and the pastors of churches. But women have seen such a need to be equal, that they have gone completely overboard! They make masculinity out to be brutal and uncaring, just to make women look better. But really men don’t have to be downgraded to help women feel more equal. Both contribute greatly to life, family, and society in many different ways. Don’t make boys think it will be bad to grow up and be a man.

This was a longer review than I usually write. I really feel there was a LOT of good content here that would benefit any parents of boys!

I received the book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Categories: 50 Books in a Year, Book reviews | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

Post navigation

2 thoughts on “Man in the Making by Rick Johnson

  1. Joy, I am reading this same book. It seems to be hitting me the same way it did you.

  2. It really is SO good. That intro just boggled my mind!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: