Book Review – Alvin Ho: Allergic to Girls, School, and Other Scary Things

Book Review
Alvin Ho:  Allergic to Girls, School, 
and Other Scary Things
Lenore Look

I absolutely love the holidays.  I love the giving of gifts, and my favorite gift to give isa really good book.  I love theidea of choosing exactly the “right” story to appeal to the recipient’spersonality, and I love the idea of that person paging through the book andidentifying with the characters. So, for me, choosing a book as a gift is a fairly detailed process andsometimes requires hours of my time to select just the right one.
This year, the difficult reader on my list is my 7 year oldnephew.  I wanted to find a bookthat he could read quietly to himself (he’s reading at a 3rd gradelevel in 1st grade!), but one that would also be fun for his folksto read with him if they wanted some quality family time.  I think I hit the jackpot with AlvinHo:  Allergic to Girls, School andOther Scary Things.
I chose this book strictly based upon the title.  What could be more fun than a 1stgrade boy who’s allergic to girls and school?  There must be a story in there and, with any luck, it wouldbe a story that would give the reader a chuckle.  If my own 7 year old’s belly laughs are any indication, thisbook will definitely appeal to my nephew and likely any other 1stthrough 3rd grade boy on your holiday list.
Alvin Ho is simply adorable!  He’s an Asian-American child who is quite literally afraidof everything.  When he goes toschool, he becomes so terrified of the teacher and other students that hesimply can’t speak.  Kids will lovethe lists he makes regarding how to make friends, and the trouble he gets intoas he turns to his older brother, Calvin, for advice.
Parents, on the other hand, will love the moral lessons he’staught as each of his schemes to overcome his fears blows up on him.  There are important lessons on “How tobe a gentleman,” the importance of avoiding peer pressure, and evenunderstanding the difference between “borrowing” and “stealing.”   
Without a doubt, Alvin Ho is priceless and is sure to bringmore than a few giggles to young readers and their parents.
This title is the first in a series of Alvin Ho booksavailable in digital and traditional format through the library.
For more information on this book or the author, visit the RandomHouse website dedicated to this author and her books by following this link.
~ Catherine H. Armstrong
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