Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Alcatraz vs. the Evil Librarians: The Scrivener's Bones

by Brandon Sanderson
343 pgs  (Alcatraz vs. the Evil Librarians series #2)

We recently discovered my 10-year-old son is dyslexic. For years we thought his handwriting would improve and he’d eventually stop confusing his “b”s and “d”s and writing certain numbers backward. But as he got older, and those things weren’t improving, we had him tested and were glad we did. I want my son to enjoy a lifetime of reading. I don’t want the fact that it’s not as easy for him as it is for his peers to discourage him from reading and prevent him from learning from and enjoying books for the rest of his life.

As we started educating ourselves about the best ways to address dyslexia, I realized it was probably a good idea to once again start reading with him. It’s something we did when he was younger, but got out of the habit of doing as he got older. So I gave some thought into what to read with him. I wanted something that we’d both enjoy. I wanted something he’d look forward to reading with me every night, and something I would be just as excited about. I’ve made it well known that I’m a big fan of Brandon Sanderson’s books, but as big a fan as I am, I’d never read any of his Alcatraz books. I thought now was the perfect opportunity to do so.

I couldn’t have picked a better series to read with my son. It’s got action, excitement, a great system of magic (every Sanderson book does), and an underlying sense of humor, which appeals to both my son and me (and that’s not an admission that my sense of humor is juvenile). When I wrote my review of the first book in the series, Alcatraz vs. the Evil Librarians, I mentioned the fact that as soon as we were done with the book, my son went to the bookshelf and grabbed the second book and set it out so that it was ready to be started. The same thing happened when we finished this one. It’s been very rewarding to see the difference in my son’s attitude about reading since we started reading these books together. It used to be a battle with him every night when I tried to get him to find a book to read and go to his room to read before bed. Now, without me having to say a word, he comes to me with the book in his hand and asks if we can read now. We start book III tomorrow.

★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

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