If you haven’t of heard about Barrington Stoke then please check out their website. I came across Barrington Stoke on twitter, and instantly fell in love; from it’s logo (fyi it’s a squirrel!) to it’s branding. Barrington Stoke produces books for children and teenagers who have been diagnosed with Dyslexia or have difficulty reading. They have a team of wonderful writers (Malorie Blackman and Kevin Brooks, to name a couple) and a team of ‘child testers’ to make sure that each book is readable and a good story.
I love reading. Seriously, if you haven’t of guessed by now, well you now know. I’ve always had my head stuck in a book as a child and I admit, I get a bit upset if someone hates reading because they struggle to read or find a book they enjoy. Hence this publishing house has a soft spot in my heart.
I myself, am not dyslexic, but I know a few people that are. I emailed Barrington Stoke regarding their books and they were lovely enough to end a review copy along.
I read the book in just under an hour. I understand that this may make fellow readers feel disheartened by this, but believe me, this is not the case. I read books way too fast sometimes, but I found this book easy to read, both with it’s set out and the way it was written.
I handed this book to someone I knew with dyslexia (I shall not mention their name, but some background for you. This person was not diagnosed with dyslexia until his late teens, and he is now in his early fifties, having never read a book in his life, although this could be an exaggeration on his part). Anyways, he was at first shocked, and joked about it being a book for thickos like him (please also note, that having people around him read the likes of Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings, this guys self-esteem with regards to reading is not very high), and I said that I’d like him to have a look and see what he thinks.
Barrington Stoke did apologise that they did not write book for people older than early/late teens, but the book they provided, Five Hundred Miles, I found was a perfect start to a lifetime of reading.
My ‘tester’ said that they liked the way the book was set out; with regards to the spacing and set out of words and the type font and size of the lettering. They ‘approved’ the use of short sentences and smaller paragraphs, saying that this helps them concentrate when reading. They also liked that the book was not huge but enough for a story, so it didn’t seem too daunting.
I found the story funny and interesting. I also liked how the point of view changed constantly throughout the story, and it was very fast paced, not so much ‘fluff’ and description used, although enough to describe characters. I really loved the first page!
Barrington Stoke can be found in libraries and the books are very reasonably priced, so if you know someone who struggles to read, give them the gift of reading and buy them a book from their website.
Leave me a comment below if you’ve read any books published by Barrington Stoke and would you recommend them to fellow readers. Again, thank you to the publishers for providing the book and allowing me the chance to give the gift of reading to someone close to me.