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As the mother of a three girls and one boy, the Daniel Funk series has been a life-saver for my eleven year old son, who likes only to keep his room dirty and the xbox always on. Accept, that is, when's he's reading Daniel Funk. His room is still messy, however.
It was a real struggle getting my son to read, but when I read Attack of the Growling Eyeballs aloud to him last year, something clicked. The book talked to him. Before I had even read him 40 pages, he had snatched the book from me and spent the next three days in his (messy) room with his door closed. When he was done with that, we went to the store and bought the next two in the series and repeated the process. He has waited almost a full year for the latest addition, which is sadly the final book in this marvelous series. While my son still plays way too much xbox, and his room is even dirtier than it used to be, he is now reading on his own, and reading for pleasure.
What a delight this series has been for me and my family. Lin Oliver's sparkling fluid prose speaks to the eleven year old in all of us. It's full of high and low humor, quick, snappy and irreverent observations, soaring adventure and an honest understanding of what it's like to young boy in a house of girls -- where through a fantastic invention, our poor Daniel retreats into his tiny universe with his almost invisible brother, and there discovers that world is only as small as your imagination.
I have pre-ordered this final installment for my son, and while he is sad to see the series end, he can't wait to discover the where Lin Oliver's imagination will take him.