"There's no point in spending your life in the pursuit of something that's easy." - Alice Kuipers

Monday, December 3, 2012

The Mysterious Benedict Society

When asked what genre I particularly like to read, I never have an answer. Like music, my taste is all over the place. The only distinction I'm concerned with is whether or not its a good story. If it can take me away, I'm happy to let it. Of course, there are a few genres I generally gravitate to, but I've made it a personal rule not to disregard something just because it's in a genre I'm not familiar with or have made assumptions about.

For example, I recently finished The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling. I almost put it down in the beginning. Although the writing was excellent, I didn't find the subject matter compelling. I find politics particularly off putting, which was the basis for the story. Luckily, I didn't. Because once I was a few chapters in, I found myself emerged in the worlds of the characters and I couldn't put it down. It was excellent!

Just this weekend, I read the second novel in a series called The Mysterious Benedict Society. The novels are for children, but the writing, concept and story are just too good to put down. It gathers together four small and uniquely gifted children by the charming Mr. Benedict and sets them on delicious adventures. The characters are fantastic and I find I never know what's going to happen next. They're impossible to predict and I love it! The author, Trenton Lee Stewart, is ridiculously clever. Don't just buy these books for your children, read them yourself! They celebrate talent in all forms, encourage intellectual pursuit and are captivating.

I guess what I'm trying to say is, don't let the genres bog you down. A good story is a good story. There's no sense in missing something wonderful just because of it's label. Break through your barriers and surprise yourself. The world is full of treasures waiting to be found!


  1. Wow, these are sitting on my son's shelf right now. Usually I do pre-read a lot of their books. I'm waiting for the age when the genres they love and the ones I love coincide.
    At least now I feel like there are three great thick books awaiting my attention! Thanks!

    1. You are very welcome! You won't be disappointed, these are an absolute delight! I love how the author uses each child's uniqueness. It's not just about being smart, but physically and emotionally skilled, and how working together they are able to solve complex problems.