Brittany's Reviews > Word Nerd

Word Nerd by Susin Nielsen
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May 26, 2011

liked it

Ambrose is a quirky kid. He wears purple cords and bright green and red shirts, and a knitted hat with a pompom. He's a smart aleck. He's intelligent. And the kids at school do not like him.

This is the story of a young misfit, who finds a way to fit in and expand his world with Scrabble. The story itself is (and believe me I don't like to say this about books) kinda "cute." It's a very hopeful story meant for younger readers - perhaps readers who do not fit in.

I found the things I liked most about this book were the first person voice of Ambrose, and the off-kilter-but-wholesome relationship between him and Cosmo.

The things I liked least were (for some reason) consistent mentions of taking a "poo", and his insane mother. Having grown up in a household where my parents were not at all overbearing, I have a hard time (especially as an adult) coping with stories or examples of parents who are. I just want to smack them around and say "Give your kid some breathing room!"

I picked this book up because I love to play "kitchen" scrabble. I'm good enough that my husband doesn't like to play with me anymore, and bad enough that I'm not a serious challenge to anyone who takes playing seriously. But I always thought it would be interesting to hear a little more about the competitive world of Scrabble. This isn't really the book for that. Scrabble in this book is a vehicle for change and development, and not a character itself. So if you're looking for a book ABOUT Scrabble, this is not it. If you're looking for a book about kids finding a way to fit in and learning some life lessons along the way, this book is for you.
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