Cory Mackenson, age 12, lives in Zephyr, Alabama, a quiet town that has an odd air of [[{{MagicalRealism}} magic to it]]. One day, while Cory is out with his father delivering milk, the two witness the aftermath of a horrific murder, the victim disappearing in a lake. Tom Mackenson is deeply haunted by this, and Cory attempts to find clues to the identity of the murderer.

...and yet, despite the above event, this book is truly about [[{{ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin}} the life of a boy]]. The murder provides a story arc. a conflict and a climax, but ''Boy's Life'' is, at its core, a SliceOfLife novel, alternating between [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming heartwarming]] and [[TearJerker heartwrenching events]] in one year of Cory's life.

One of Robert R. [=McCammon's=] best known books, and winner of the 1992 WorldFantasyAward, ''Boy's Life'' is something along the lines of "''Literature/ToKillAMockingbird'', but with a 12-year-old boy in the 1960's.

Not to be confused with the official magazine of the Boy Scouts of America titled ''Boys' Life''.
----
!!This novel contains examples of:

* AnimalMotifs: It's subtle, but there are recurring themes of birds and flight. [[spoiler:Yes, they are extremely relevant.]]
* CoolOldGuy: Mr. Lightfoot
* DarkestHour: The better part of "Winter's Cold Truth", but especially "[[{{Irony}} Faith]]".
* EverythingsBetterWithMonkeys: [[{{AvertedTrope}} NO]]...well, [[{{CrowningMomentOfFunny}} maybe for the readers]], but the people of Zephyr definitely don't appreciate the aptly named Lucifer.
* HurlItIntoTheSun: At the end of the second part, Nemo, [[spoiler:enraged by the fact he has to move yet again]] literally hurls a baseball at the sun and stalks off. [[spoiler: The ball never comes down]].
* [[spoiler: KillTheCutie]]: [[spoiler: Davy Ray.]]
* MagicalNegro: The Lady, quite literally.
* MagicalRealism: This book pushes the WillingSuspensionOfDisbelief ''quite'' far with the amount of ridiculously prevalent supernatural happenings, including but not limited to: ghosts, a magical woman who can [[spoiler:turn bullets into snakes]], a dog [[spoiler:being brought back to life through prayer]], a baseball [[spoiler:apparently thrown INTO THE SUN]], and a magical biting bike.
* MostWritersAreWriters
* MrFixIt: Mr. Lightfoot can fix anything. [[spoiler:He even disarms an atomic bomb.]]
* SnowMeansDeath
* SubliminalSeduction: According to Reverend Blesset, the Beach Boys do it. ("The Devil Is My Strawberry!")
* UnexplainedRecovery: Rebel. [[spoiler:This is not a good thing.]]
----