The Peanut-Free Word Nerd

Word Nerd by Susin Nielsen

Prior to staring this book, I picked up a superhero novel that I was excited to read. But the writing was so unbearably terrible that I couldn’t read more than two paragraphs of it. So I picked up this one that had been sitting on my shelf and it captured me with the very first sentence.

“The day I almost died, the sky was a bright, brilliant blue – a nice change from the rain earlier in the week.”

Straight forward and to the point, and no sign of purple prose. It was also peanut free. You could tell from the familiar logo on the front cover.

The story revolves around a twelve year old boy who has had to move several times over the past few years because of his mom’s job. He doesn’t really have any friends but does his best to convince his mom that all is fine at school. He even tells her that the three kids that bully him every day are friends. That’s why she couldn’t understand the peanut “prank” they pulled. And she didn’t understand why he didn’t like to carry the ugly fanny-pack she gave him that had his life-saving epipen in it.

Fortunately, they both understood that school wasn’t the best place for him and let him continue his studies from home. Since he was old enough to stay at home alone, his mom was able to keep working. This also gave him the chance to connect with a new neighbour and discover a local Scrabble club. He’d always played the game with his mom, but now he started upping his game and studying words even further. He had to be careful though, because his over cautious and protective mom didn’t want him straying far from home and she’d specifically told him that he couldn’t join the club. Fortunately, for everyone, he didn’t listen.

This was a good read that probably fits in to the realm of young adult literature. Great stories can reach multiple audiences and this Scrabble lover, sure enjoyed this one. Perhaps you will too!

My List of 2021 Reads – my annual reading (b)log