I’ve tried hard, really I have, but there’s something about a lot of geared-towards-boys book series that just don’t appeal to me. The whole Goosebumps series—meh. Petfinders and Petsitters—again, I could live without them. The Hardy Boys were just all right, but of course, Nancy Drew was preferable. So I had a certain mental block already, going into Something Wickedly Weird.
The Boy had picked it up on his own at the library, and insisted that he wanted to read it. I warned him that the reading level might be a bit too high for him, but it seemed interesting to him, he said. We tried a bit of it each night for bedtime reading, but it was so hard for me to get into. So I said that he could try to read some of it on his own, and I’d catch up. I ended up reading only one full chapter with him.
More than three weeks later, and he wasn’t more than halfway through. Finally, I said, not with much interest, “Do you want to renew it?” He hesitated. “No, not really.” He finally admitted to me that he hadn’t found the book that enjoyable. And I could tell that too many of the words in there would be tough for a five-year-old to understand on his own, without an adult reading alongside him. But he hadn’t complained. For more than three weeks, he had dragged that book around with him, and whenever I had said, “Quiet reading time”, he’d pull out his bookmark and struggle through it on his own, without comprehending all the words or even the general plot.
One day, he’ll be old enough to read it on his own, or else I’ll face these books head on and find some sort of enjoyment in them. But not today. And either he had wanted to save face, or he was determined to stick it out for three weeks in a sort of blind fog, you have to admire that in a reader.