Born to Read

Born to Read
Co-Authors / Illustrators
Age Range
Release Date
August 12, 2008
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THE AWARD-WINNING COLLABORATORS of the New York Times #1 picture book bestseller Wild About Books are back with a new story that promotes books and reading. Told in Judy Sierra’s inimitable read-aloud rhyme, the narrative chronicles the amazing successes of Sam—thanks to his early love of books. The story ranges from Sam’s infancy, when his mother reads him a picture book (“then another, then another, then another . . . such a perfect, patient mother”), to school age, when he cleverly uses some of his favorite books to rid his town of the rampaging baby giant, Grundaloon. “‘Here’s my secret,’ Sam decreed. ‘Readers win and winners read.’” Marc Brown’s playful pictures joyously complement this fun-to-read, upbeat story.

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2 reviews
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Ill be honest. I wasnt planning on reviewing this book. I have mixed feelings about it, which may partly be because I was so excited when I saw the cover and the title. I thought it was a great concept (I mean, hey, I love reading). And the first half of the book held onto that promise nicely. I was imagining reading it to my son as he got older.

Then, the book takes a dramatic left turn into fantasy land and kind of lost me. Where the first part was about a boy who was born to read and studied hard and won a bike race because of how good a reader he was, the second part introduced a baby giant that terrorized the town and stole toys. The boy who loved to read saved the day by tricking the baby giant with books.

It felt like two entirely different books mushed together. On the one hand, real-life stuff and problem solving. On the other hand, pure fantasy. So I put it aside and decided not to review it as I dont generally like to review books I am so conflicted over (yeah, yeah, I know, I sure can get worked up over a picture book, right?).

Then a little boy in the neighborhood had a birthday party that we were invited to at the last minute. We were told not to bring a gift, but how do you do that? So I brought Born to Read. And he really, really liked it. And the point at which he began to really like it? When the baby giant appeared and the story made that detour into fairy tale land.

That reminded me that kids do read things differently than adults do. While I was jarred by the sudden shift, he was enraptured by the baby giant. So, while I still have my own personal reservations about this book (couldnt it have been split into two? it could have made a cute series even), Im including this review because Im sure there are kids out there who will love it. And the illustrations by Marc Brown are really darling and wonderfully colorful.
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