by Roni Schotter, illustrated by Giselle Potter
Ages 7-10, 40 pages
Some children collect feathers, shells, or stones, but Selig collects words. Whenever Selig hears a new word he enjoys, he quickly writes it on a piece of paper and stuffs it into his pockets. Most children play ball or jump rope outside, however Selig listens and watches words used to then add to his growing word collection. Classmates call him Wordsworth and hurt his feeling when they call him an oddball. Even his parents are puzzled by his word collection. Selig has an unusual dream with a genie who declares that he isn’t an oddball, but is a lover of words. Immediately, Selig awakes and realizes his purpose is to share his words with others. For example, he adds the words sprinkles, scrumptious, luscious, and morsels to a bakery. Eventually, Selig meets his match with a girl who sings words.
The Boy Who Loved Words contains wonderful words and introduces new vocabulary. Amazon.com lists this book for ages 4-8, but I think even older children can utilize this book. The language is more complex with short paragraphs on each page. This is an excellent book to teach with writing and throw away boring words. The book provides a glossary with all the descriptive words. I wrote another word collector book review, Max’s Words, which I suggest for younger ages.
Selig loved everything about words – the sound of them in his ears (tintinnabulating!), the taste of them on his tongue (tantalizing!), the thought of them when they percolated in his brain (stirring!), and, most especially, the feel of them when they moved his heart (Mama!).
– Roni Schotter (The Boy Who Loved Words, page 2)