My eight-year-old loves the Goosebumps series by R.L. Stine. Over the summer, he must have read anywhere from thirty-five to forty books in that collection. It reached the point where I started to panic that he would read every book the library had to offer and then start pestering me to buy any books they didn’t carry (luckily, the library is well stocked).
I also started to worry that he was reading scary stories to the exclusion of all other fiction, so I started pestering him to try another series. I made suggestion after suggestion, but he refused. He doesn’t like fantasy, so that eliminated a large part of his options, and he’s not all that crazy about mysteries, either (sigh).
But just when I was about to give up, I found the Stranded series, about four kids from a blended family who are stranded on an island after a storm wrecks their ship. Since my son is on the lower end of the suggested 8- to 12-year age range, I read the book first to make sure there was nothing inappropriate in it. Almost from the start, I knew the book was a winner. It had action, excitement, humor, and for the most part, no adults. What could be better?
My son agreed with me. In fact, we both liked the books so much that we were fighting over who got to read the other two books in the trilogy first.
As I finished up the last one, I thought about how much fun I’d had reading the series, and how much fun it would be to write a book like that. I’ve always been a fan of adventure books and movies (Goonies is still my favorite movie), so why not write a book full of danger and excitement aimed at the middle school crowd?
But alas, the timing isn’t right. I’m currently in the middle of my latest Blossom Valley Mystery, and I’m not the kind of writer who can work on two books at once.
So my adventure book for kids will have to sit on the back burner for now. In the meantime, I see the first book in another Stranded trilogy has been released. I can’t wait to tell my son.