Earlier this week I noticed that my eldest son was almost done reading Matthew Reilly’s The Six Sacred Stones, mostly because he was asking if there were any more books in the series. I proceeded to dig out my hardcovers of the next two volumes, The Five Greatest Warriors and The Four Legendary Kingdoms, and handed them to him. He happily puts them in his room, and I figure he’ll be entertained by that for a while.
Two days later, the boyo suddenly starts talking about something that happened in The Four Legendary Kingdoms over dinner, and I interrupt, saying, “Hang on, didn’t I just give you those books practically yesterday?”
He looks at me, puzzled. “Yeah. So?”
“You finished The Five Greatest Warriors already?”
“I finished it yesterday. I started reading the Legendary Kingdoms one today.”
“And you’re done?!”
“Well,” he replies, in that tone that says he’s worried that he’s in trouble, “…aaaaaaalmost.”
I sigh, laugh, look at his father, who is giving me that Significant Look, and chuckle some more. “Yeah, you’re my son alright.”
I ask him a few more questions about the book and am satisfied that he’s actually reading the books. He has fun reading them! So, I bring out the Scarecrow series of books for him to read since the next one in the Jack West Jr. series isn’t out yet. I rather expect he’ll be done by Sunday, unless he gets stuck into his project homework over the weekend. He also called me up on his way home, happily telling me about the Scholastic book club orders he was schlepping home, and that he couldn’t wait to ‘devour the books.’
Most of Matthew Reilly’s books are of the high-speed adventure sort, and I rather think of them as “What if John Woo, J.J. Abrams, Michael Bay, and the folks who do the MCU decided to write books instead?” My son started reading his books which aligned to his interests, Troll Mountain and The Great Zoo of China. The only somewhat more adult-target audience book is The Tournament.
I rather wish I had David Eddings’ books all in hardcover, because paperbacks fall apart from being reread, and mine are in the “Old favorites falling apart” category. Hmm. Looks like I’ve got a Plan for Christmas.
That said, while my preference is for him to have actual physical books (as it’s ‘get away from screen’ time), it is tempting to get Vincent a Kindle. I don’t know though if I can have it so that only certain books I want him to have can be downloaded onto it; and that the books come from my account. I don’t know if there is a “Child sub-account” feature. Anyone out there know?
Most of the books son is into reading are mostly action and adventure. Swearing is fine, so are descriptions of romantic feelings, ”fade to black/cut to next scene’ implied ‘something happened’ and kissing, but he’s a bit young at 10 for even Ikea sex scenes, never mind the more graphic stuff; this is also the same for overly loving descriptions of dismemberment, suffering and death, or disturbing psychological mindfuckery.
So he’ll get Dave Freer, Diane Duane, Matthew Reilly, David and Leigh Eddings, whoever wrote Wings of Fire and similar authors; but he’s just a touch young for Correia, or Jim Butcher (Maybe wait a few more years; 14-15? We’ll see.) Animewise, it’s the difference between Log Horizon and Sword Art Online. He can watch most of the MCU, barring Deadpool.
He also enjoys books closer to the usual age bracket – Wings of Fire, that Treehouse series of books, some of the Scholastic book club books. We’re vetting the Assassin’s Creed YA books though, because Rhys is more familiar with it and wants to make sure there’s nothing there the Eldest Son will likely misunderstand very badly.