When you analyse and discuss David Nicholls’ short story “Every Good Boy”, it might also be a good idea to look at it in perspective, to try and reflect on the literary context and works with similar themes. 

Current issues

Reflect on whether today’s society still puts pressure on children to have distinctive skills and find their passion from an early age. Have you experienced similar feelings and events as the narrator?


Literary period

Published in 2011, “Every Good Boy” is a modern, realistic short story.


Works with the same theme

A short story which explores the theme of expectations versus reality in a very different way and can broaden you understanding of this theme is “The Mother of the Child in Question” by Doris Lessing (Contexts, pp. 150). The story follows a social worker who visits a family of immigrants in an attempt to convince the parents to place their mentally challenged daughter in a special need’s school.


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