Book Review

Grand Theft Childhood: The Surprising Truth about Violent Video Games and What Parents Can Do

Lawrence Kutner and Cheryl K. Olson
New York: Simon & Schuster, 2008. Notes, index. 260 pp. $25.00 cloth. ISBN 9780743299510

The Ecology of Games: Connecting Youth, Games, and Learning

Katie Salen, editor
Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2008. Notes, glossary, index. 278 pp. $16.00 paper. ISBN 9780262693646

by Stephen Jacobs

First Paragraph:

Video games currently occupy the hot seat in the furor around the impact of media on minors. As is the case with the other historically contested media forms—dime novels, comic books, pop music, film, and television—video games have the ability to entertain and educate. Some think their interactive nature can make them more engaging and therefore more dangerous than the other media forms. As with comic books and animation, popular opinion treats video games as entertainment for kids, despite the fact the average age of video game enthusiasts over the past few years is in the midthirties.