A Quirky, Pleasant Read for 9-12 year olds – The Funeral Director’s Son
The Funeral Director’s Son by Coleen Murtagh Paratore
Chapter Book for Middle Grade Readers published by Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers
This summer I have really focussed on delving into chapter books for children who are able to read independently but may need some help in locating good books. I selected a number of books that target 9 -12 year olds. I read a couple of them aloud to my ten year old.
Possibly the quirkiest book we read was The Funeral Director’s Son by Coleen Murtagh Paratore. I really had no idea what to expect and hoped that the cover, which is somewhat flowery, would not deter a hockey-playing ten year old male. Anyhow, I read and he happily listened. We both enjoyed the Charles Dickens quotes that preceded each chapter (at times quizzing Daddy to name the source of the quote). The relatively short chapters will appeal to some reluctant readers who may be overwhelmed by longer books. On more than one occasion we read three or four chapters in one evening. Ms. Paratore poses an interesting question: What happens when the heir apparent to a family business is not at all interested in taking up the reins and can’t wait to escape life in a small town? The Funeral Director’s Son offered a breezy, enjoyable glimpse of a rather unusual family life wrapped up in a fun read aloud for 9-12 year olds.