AAron nAAs
AAron nAAs asked:

Could this be appropriate for my 9yr old son? (Language? Situations? ...) I think I'll enjoy the audio book, and want to know if sharing the book with my son would be advisable.

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Anthony Kramer This book is actually pretty tame given that it follows such a mature cast of characters. There -is- some language and suggestive situations but both are mild and few-and-far-between. I believe there -may- have been some instances of the words "Damn/Damnit" and "Hell" used in this book. The worst instance of bad language in this book is when the main character tells someone that he "looks bitchin' ". There was one reference to a character being "turned on" but it was a humorous one I'm sure most readers not knowing the meaning of that phrase would glaze over. There are, however, some other overt reference to sexuality is when one character tells the protagonist (again, in a humorous tone) that she's sure she doesn't need to fear him "ravishing her" since she jokingly suspects he's celibate. (SPOILER ALERT) Possibly the most suggestive part in the book is when the protagonist is talking to a fellow wizard who is a novelist in his spare time and apparently writes very trashy fantasy books teeming with "gratuitous sex" (pg. 146). The sex scenes in his novels are briefly mentioned as well as the "naked priestesses" and the seduction of a "beautiful, wealthy countess," (pg. 146). They don't go into any detail beyond mentioning the nakedness and the fact that sex took place. (/SPOILER). Apart from that, there is only one other mention of sex I can think of that your child will most likely not notice. And then there's two other references to male genitalia I can think of (one recurring, subtle reference and one singular, pretty overt reference--both of them, like all the inappropriate content in this book, humorous) that I think a 9 year old will probably not pay much attention to. Really, I can count most of the inappropriate elements of this 375 page book on two hands, so it's definitely safe for your child, I just figured I'd outline all the inappropriate content for you so you can determine for yourself if it's something you want to share with your son.

As for violence, there is some but 95% of it is cartoonish. Literally. Since (SPOILER ALERT) most of the characters cannot sustain bodily injury. The other 5% of the violence can possibly be a bit disturbing, involving references to bodily transformations--one of which is described as being painful and just a pinch bloody. But I don't think a 9 year old would process these mildly cringe-worthy details. (/SPOILER ALERT).

As for religion (if that matters to you), this book does deal with our whole existence and reality as we know it being controlled by a bunch of lines of code. Thusly, this book does mention--very briefly--the Christian faith, its church, and its god and there are a couple very brief instances where the validity of all these things is sort-of, kind-of brought into question. (SPOILER ALERT [kind of]) Rest assured, the stance and tone towards these things ends up being very safe and neutral, actually promoting the validity of religion and science and showing they're not necessarily mutually-exclusive ideas. While I think this is a very excellent message for children to receive, I will leave it to you whether you think this is a good thing or a bad thing. (/SPOILER ALERT) Regardless, the references to religion are limited to exactly two and are both very safe and short-lived.

Overall, this is a great and presently under-appreciated book. It's extremely hilarious, smart, clever, imaginative, well-written, and bears some very worth-while moral messages. The characters are all well fleshed-out and loveable, each in their own way; and it's certainly big enough to make for some excellent bed-time story reading over the course of a few weeks. I trust your son (and yourself) will eagerly look forward to each time you two are ready to delve into another few chapters together, especially once the story starts getting into the Medieval England, magic'y bits. I've only read this one so far, but I can tell it's the beginning of a wonderful and enthralling series that I hope you and your child can share in together.

So yeah. Read it to him if the stuff I mentioned doesn't bother you. Happy bonding!
AAron nAAs I did end up listening to the story with my son, and we loved it. I ultimately realized it was appropriate (even at 9yrs), and was fun to explain some points about old computers to my son who lives in a universe of MSWindows/tablet/smartphone/Tivo/Netflix/xbox/Youtube/Minecraft. Thanks to everyone for the feedback!
Sara My almost 12 year old son recently got into audiobooks. Since I already had this series, and didn't remember anything salacious, I suggested it. He's hooked. Walks around the house listening to it. And I've not heard anything that makes me regret my decision. He has Asperger's and is a little immature for his age and is very sensitive to embarrassing things and nothing has bothered him so far.
Georgie Waters It's fine content-wise, but I don't know if he'll get some of the historical geek humor.
Luke Yes.

The story is cute. 'Bitchin' is indeed the worst language in the book and even the wizard's powerful staff innuendo is that one does not 'make the obvious joke'.

I wouldn't be surprised, though, if you like the story more than your son, since the book is riddled with 80s and 90s references.
Jazzmin Hunter I just finished this audiobook. There was no sex or bad language. A group of nerdy guys end up in the Middle Ages as wizards. They say that rule #1 about having a staff is to not make the obvious joke (exact words of the book). The obvious joke is never said, but a 9 yr old will ask you. That is as close to sex as it gets. At the end of the book are references to Lord of the Rings, so you might want to read those books or see the movies first (just The Hobbit would be enough). The characters of the book are all adults, so some things they talk about might not be obvious to a 9 yr old, but it also gives you something to discuss with him. Overall it is fun and has good morals and good language. If my son were still 9, I would listen to it with him.
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