The Most Meaningful Bookish Gift You’ve Ever Given: Finalist #3

Amanda Nelson

Staff Writer

Amanda Nelson is an Executive Director of Book Riot. She lives in Richmond, VA.

This giveaway is sponsored by Read It Forward.


Read It Forward is a Book Geek’s best friend. Since 2008, Read It Forward has been surprising readers with weekly giveaways, behind-the-scenes sneak peeks at new titles and new voices, and literary lifestyle chats. Discover your next great read … read it first and pass it on!


In this giveaway, we asked you to submit the story of the most meaningful book you’ve ever given someone as a gift. We’ve narrowed the field down to three finalists, each of whom win copies of The Martian by Andy Weir and Bonita Avenue by Peter Buwalda. Now it’s time for you to vote on your favorite! The winner will receive a pack of 10 books from the folks at Read It Forward! Voting will end 11:59PM EST, Tuesday, January 20th. Vote here!

Finalist #3: Amy

My 8 year old son is dyslexic. A crushing blow to an avid bookworm parent. We knew something wasn’t connecting with reading, even in preschool. He doesn’t see letters backwards, but doesn’t process print on paper the same way we do. Plunging forward, we had him tested and sure enough the most brilliant of inventions, print on paper, had a nemesis. He hated reading. My son would try and try to sound out letters, remember letters and try to write his name. He hated reading but never gave up. Our school helped put a support system in place for him to improve and gain confidence reading. Over time, with a lot of motivation, tears, bribes, and special teachers, he has found something.

My intelligent and dyslexic son has found joy. He has found joy and connected with a book he has started to read on his own. This book, given to him for Christmas, is Stuart Goes to School by Sara Pennypacker. My son has found a connection with third grader Stuart. He started reading and slowly, sounding out words familiar and unfamiliar to him, he got really excited! He was reading a book with chapters on his own! He didn’t have to wait to listen to an adventure at bedtime anymore and it wasn’t homework, either! He was reading for fun! He was reading to his Dad to share the adventure of Stuart with him. I am holding onto all of my hiking and mountain adventure books for him. One day he will read one and bring it with him on his own adventures. Stuart Goes to School is the most meaningful book I’ve given. My son has found the joy in reading.


Vote for this finalist here!