I received this The Brain Sucker by Glenn Wood from Nikki Leigh, from Book Promotional Service as part of their online book launch. The book was really enjoyable. The Brain Sucker was originally released by Walker Books Ltd in New Zealand, Australia and the UK and was a Sakura Medal nominee. It is now being released in the US and Canada.
I thought the concept was interesting. I live outside of New York City, where people have a reputation of being rude, mean and down right cut throat. So when the villain of The Brain Sucker was trying to remove all the goodness in the world, I could relate and was interested. New Yorkers can be crewel and unusual but so caring and helpful, its bipolar in how interesting they can be. Set in the London area, I felt the description and feeling of London was very accurate from the view of a small town resident. London can be overwhelming and claustrophobic, So when the hero’s best friend gets overwhelmed by the magisty that is the city, it makes perfect sense!
The Brain Sucker is a critically acclaimed children’s book that has been published in Australia and the UK by Walker Books. The book is aimed at middle schoolers (around age 9-12). The writing style isn’t particularly hard, it has a lot of short sentences and longer paragraphs. Chapters are about average in length.
I loved the attitude of our hero, Callum McCullock. First off he’s in a wheel chair and is better adjusted then any high schooler I’ve met! He has an “I can do it” attitude and wants to take care of his friends. I can just imagine so many scenes between him and his grandmother (the pillar of manners for their town). His best friends are a girl who crafty and smart (and not afraid to be that way) and a boy who has the worst luck in the world, and accepts it. One thing I really do enjoy is that while Callum is in a wheel chair, its perfectly normal to him. He doesn’t make it weird and at times I forgot he was in one until it was re-pointed out. It takes a talented writer to normalize what people aren’t comfortable with.
I admit, I did get stuck on parts of trying to believe descriptions. But I had to remind myself, I read trashy scifi, there are some horrible and unbelievable descriptions in that.
What it boils down to? Read this with your middle school kid. Read this and have some awkward conversations about physical disabilities and what causes them. Read this and talk about if an evil genius can really take all the hope and goodness out of people.
Thank you Nikki Leigh, from Book Promotional Service, I really did enjoy the book and was happy to be apart of the promotion.