A statewide reading and discussion project sponsored by the Kansas Center for the Book at the State Library of Kansas.
Recommended by a committee of experienced and qualified librarians, educators, and authors, Our Boys: A Perfect Season on the Plains with the Smith Center Redmen by Joe Drape to fit the theme, “Community,” was selected by the State Librarian for its broad-based appeal that encourages and sustains spirited discussion about how small communities that expect to grow need something special, which can take many forms, including a high school football team.
Please use this web page as a resource for personal, library, and classroom information as you read and study Our Boys. You will find a wealth of material including discussion questions, program ideas, related graphics, and much more!
The Kansas Center for the Book at the State Library of Kansas is proud for the sixth year to present 2012 Kansas Reads...Our Boys, an inspiring story about how a coach and a small town build young people with the basic values of love, patience, and hard work, a vivid slice of American life.
“What we do well around here is raise kids.”—Roger Barta, head football coach of the Smith Center Redmen.
Our Boys began with an interesting report of a high school football team with the nation’s longest winning streak. What Joe Drape discovered while writing a feature article for his newspaper went far deeper than just another football story. He brought to readers everywhere inspiration that goes to the core of what America’s heartland is today.
“It is not so much a story about football but about the true meaning of Midwestern values, family life, and the spirit of small-town Kansas and its special people.”—Bill Snyder, legendary head football coach, Kansas State University, on the dust jacket of the hardcover Times Books edition.