Books by jim Hancock + Friends


These digital books are available for direct download here — and most are available in the Kindle Store at Amazon for your iPad or Kindle Reader.


"THE BOY WHO BELIEVED IN MAGIC is stunning in its simplicity, ruthless in its candor, raw in its power." — Brennan Manning

This is about control.

Some people grow up believing their lives are none of their business … they live with what’s called an "external locus of control" — meaning they don’t make decisions about what they’ll do, or not do — or try to do or not do — because they feel powerless in the face of bigger forces they’re convinced are controlling what happens to them.

Maybe they’re angry about that. Maybe they’re sort of glad to be relieved of responsibility. Maybe they simply try not to think about it too much because, whatever happens — good or bad — seems a lot like magic in their eyes.

Of course, they’re not entirely wrong. Most of us don’t have direct influence on the macroeconomy … or global politics … or pandemic disease outbreaks. Does that mean we’re off the hook for making prudent choices about money, or voting, or healthcare?

People who believe in magic think they are off the hook. They may choose impulsively … or delay choices until there is no choice. Either way, what does it matter? One experience after another, they learn to interpret whatever happens as magic.

If you think you can, you might. If you think you can’t, you won’t.

This storybook for big people is about that.

Download the PDF version here or at Noisetrade, or get the Kindle version at Amazon.

Raising Adults

A Humane Guide for Parenting in the New World

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raising adults

Raising children is not all it’s cracked up to be.

20 years after the first edition of Raising Adults, Jim Hancock says, "There aren’t too many projects I’ve worked on that still hold up two decades later. I think this one, Raising Adults, may be stronger today than the day it was released." 

Raising Adults scrutinizes the ways successive generations come to see their place in the world … bulldozes generational assumptions about growing up … and constructs a common space where parents, kids, and grandkids can learn to treat each other the way they want to be treated. Raising Adults is about:

- Starting from where we are, not where we should be

- Deepening self-awareness

- Do-overs — both getting and giving them

- Replacing toxic habits with sustainable, life-giving practices

- Doing everything we can for as long as we can to love and appreciate every unique child and parent

Do you want to raise children, or adults? Pick one.


This 10 Things Single will show you how to use your words to help kids figure out how cause and effect works. Sometimes that lesson is fun; other times not so much. 

Fun or not, the alternative is kids growing up befuddled and believing in magic … which is relentlessly not-fun. 

This is one of 10 Things I Never Say to Kids :: Why I Stopped + What I Say Instead.


This 10 Things Single is about using words to command compliance from children. As it turns out, this is a pretty effective tactic for keeping kids in line — right up to the moment when it stops working. From then on, all bets are off.

Big Hairy Question: If your parents used words to overpower you, and if — once you saw what they were doing — you hated it, can you really expect a different outcome if you do that your own kids?

This is one of 10 Things I Never Say to Kids :: Why I Stopped + What I Say Instead.


This 10 Things Single is about how we run to risk of setting children up for abusers if we teach them that the demands of parents and other adults with authority doesn’t need to be reasonable, fair, consistent — or ever subject to review or negotiation.

I get it: sometimes swift obedience is necessary for protecting life and limb. Do you get that that’s best accomplished when children come to believe we will never make unreasonable demands simply because we can?

This is one of 10 Things I Never Say to Kids :: Why I Stopped + What I Say Instead.


posers, fakers & wannabes

As Brennan Manning turned 70, he realized younger readers were struggling with one of his favorite books, Abba's Child. Rather than lament the loss of public literacy or shrug and move on, Brennan wondered how to bring Abba’s Child alive for a new generations of readers.

I jumped at the chance to remix Abba’s Child as Posers, Fakers, & Wannabes.

As it turns out grizzled adult readers kind of like it too.


how to Volunteer Like a Pro

After two decades paying my bills as a church-based youth worker, I surrendered that business card to work on a video magazine for youth groups called EdgeTV — and once again became a volunteer youth worker. This book records the most practical lessons I learned or relearned in the years that followed. Things like...

  • What to do on the first day

  • Developing healthy relationships with students 

  • coping with youth culture shock

  • dealing with adolescent crushes 

  • reporting abuse or neglect

  • Preparing teenagers for life after youth group

  • Saying goodbye when it is time to leave

  • ...all that and a lot more to help volunteer youth workers thrive