I picked up Stone Fox from the library for Charles a week ago. He skipped over it in favor of Zapato Power and Bunjitsu Bunny, but we finally got to it on Sunday night. I read about half of the book then (it moves pretty quickly and is not a long chapter book) and Tony read the rest Monday night.
I was in my bathroom taking out my contacts when Charles came in to tell me about the end of the book. I knew what was coming and I started tearing up right away.
“Mommy, Searchlight and Willy were doing the race and Grandfather got better and then they stopped ten feet from the finish line and Searchlight’s heart burst!”
“Oh, honey, I know…”
I enveloped Charles in my arms as he told me the rest of the story and sobbed. Then I sobbed. Then we read the last three pages of the book again and sobbed some more. Then we had a lovely, long talk about loyalty, sacrifice, sacrificial love, respect, and pride in others.
The best books are the ones that make us feel something. I am so glad that Charles was so affected by Searchlight’s sacrifice and death in the story. Novels teach our children empathy, provide opportunities for difficult conversations, and give me a chance to see the softer side of this tough-as-nails kid.
This was his fourth chin-up, engaged solely for documentation purposes. Apparently, he does them on the playground at recess every day.
Books, man. Books.