The Book of Nonsense

by David Michael Slater
ages: 10+
First sentence: “It was downright embarrassing to get treated so shabbily, especially after the way she’d gone on about how great the place was.”

There are some books that grab you and won’t let you go. Ones that you’re dying to get to night after night, the ones that your kids beg you to keep reading. This one started out that way. It’s an interesting premise: a book of “nonsense” that a couple of twins — Daphna and Dexter — discover is actually a key to an ancient language of magic. There’s an evil, twisted villain, who’s hypnotized the twins’ dad, and is trying to kidnap Dapha so she’ll work for him. There’s Emmett, a creepy red-eyed bully. And, at the beginning, it’s all very exciting and interesting.

But.

Yes, our circumstances didn’t lend for reading every day: we were often sick or busy. But days would go by and C wasn’t asking me to read. And the times when she did, and we couldn’t, she wasn’t horribly disappointed. And I wasn’t terribly thrilled while reading it, either. The chapters were long, and we could never remember what had just happened from one to the next. So, we’re abandoning it, and moving on to something else. Sure, we take the chance that we’re leaving just at the best part, that something spectacular will happen to make the book absolutely fabulous, and we’d be hooked and can’t wait for the sequel.

The problem is: neither one of us is terribly interested in finding out whether or not that’s true.

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5 thoughts on “The Book of Nonsense

  1. Thanks, Becky. I totally agree. 🙂 And (which says a whole lot) I didn’t have to do a whole lot of convincing C to abandon the book, either. Maybe one or both of us will get back to it someday.

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  2. I think it’s great that you modeled one of the Readers Bill of Rights…it’s okay to not finish a book. Better to not finish than to associate reading with something boring or unpleasant.

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  3. jessie says:

    Totally agree in principle, but I’m shocked this one left you uninspired. I LOVED this book, and I will say the twists that come at the end are brilliant. I’d seriously recommend you not give it up. The second volume is now on Amazon for pre-sale, and I’m dying to know how things develop, especially because there’s a lot of talk out there about book 3 being highly controversial – the things getting only more so from there. I guess five books are already done.

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  4. Ah, Jessie, I think this is one of those different strokes for different folks books. We just weren’t connecting with the characters, and didn’t find the action (or lack thereof) interesting. As I said, though, perhaps one or both of us will get back to it someday. I’m glad you liked it, though.

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