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Hello and a story about a new young fan


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I met Brandon as a BYU student in the early 2000s, just before he signed the deal on Elantris, and it's been great to watch his success blossom over the years. 

My own daughter is almost 11 now. She has a complicated disability (DiGeorge syndrome) and getting her to try anything new or do anything on request is almost always an exhausting endeavor. She cries, she whines, she throws tantrums, she refuses. She also has pretty severe ADHD and it's hard to get her to pay attention to anything. 

Earlier this year, I told her we were going to begin reading Alcatraz versus the Evil Librarians. She threw her usual fit, but I insisted. She whined throughout the first half of the book whenever it was time to read, and I just kept telling her that if she wasn't sold by the end of the book, we wouldn't read the others.

But towards the last 1/2 to 1/3 of the book, a change came over her. She was clearly interested. When Alcatraz unleashed the dinosaurs onto the library to help him make his final escape, she quipped, "They're not 'useless' now!" I was surprised she had been paying attention and could remember that detail. Last week, she asked to bring the book to school so she could share it for show-and-tell. 

We finished the book this morning, and I gave her a choice for our next book: Book 2 of Alcatraz, Little Shop of Hamsters by R. L. Stine, or Holes by Louis Sachar. She picked Book 2 of Alcatraz, no hesitation about it, and urged me to order ALL of the books in the series ASAP. I then let her know that her mother knew the author before she was born, and she began begging to meet him. "Well, he technically has met you a few times, but you were a baby." "He needs to see how much I've grown!" she said. 

Anyhow, looks like I need to pay attention to Brandon's event schedule so that I can take his newest young fan to meet him next time he's in Chicago. It's really wonderful to see my daughter getting enthusiastic about a book series; there have been so few. The pictures in the reprinted series are also really wonderful and help her pay attention, so I'm grateful that detail was added. I'm glad Brandon's magic won her over. 

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