Hey everyone! Today we are looking at A Boy Made Of Blocks by Keith Stuart. I read this in early December after it was sent to me as part of this book blog. However, all opinions are entirely my own!
In the tradition of Nick Hornby and David Nicholls comes a warm and tender novel in which a father and his autistic son connect over the game of Minecraft.
Alex loves his family, yet he struggles to connect with his eight-year-old autistic son, Sam. The strain has pushed his marriage to the breaking point. So Alex moves in with his merrily irresponsible best friend on the world’s most uncomfortable blow-up bed.
As Alex navigates single life, long buried family secrets, and a part-time fatherhood, his son begins playing Minecraft. Sam’s imagination blossoms and the game opens up a whole new world for father and son to share. Together they discover that sometimes life must fall apart before you can build a better one.
Inspired by the author’s own relationship with his autistic son, A Boy Made Of Blocks is a tear jerking, funny and most of all true-to-life novel about the power of difference and one very special little boy.
Goodreads Rating: 4.42/5
My Rating: 4/5
I know I say this every time, but anyone following me for a while knows 4/5 is a high rating for me. I rarely give out 5/5 and anything above 3/5 is a good read for me.
So this book follows the story of one family – husband, wife and their 8 year old son who has autism. You learn about the everyday difficulties they face with their son and the strain that has on their lives. It’s honestly really interesting to get a “first hand” experience for what autism is like for a parent. All too often you find yourself the person in the shop or cafe watching the parent try and handle their ‘out of control’ child.
I work in retail and therefore work around kids every day. I can honestly say that even though it wasn’t the direct purpose of the book, I learned a bit about autism.
One day their son is introduced to Minecraft. I’ve never played this game myself and when I heard this was featured, I wasn’t sure how much I would enjoy it. I’m not a big computer game person and I’ve watched Minecraft before and it just wasn’t for me. As it turns out, it was still an incredibly interesting book. Minecraft doesn’t feature in a way that’s boring or off-putting at all, it’s the perfect amount to show just how much of an impact this has on his life, but not too much to put you off.
You see families grow, relationships grow, new relationships form and difficulties overcome. You follow a journey of ups and downs. You find yourself rooting for the family the entire story. You see a family realising that it’s not just their son to has to mould himself and change for the world, but they have to mould themselves and change for their son.
It was really refreshing to read a book based on reality as my usual genre would include a fantasy world or a thriller. I think if a second book or a movie was to come out, I would definitely read/watch again.
The ending is really not what I expected and came as a pleasant surprise. I honestly don’t tear up a lot at books, but this one really tugged the heartstrings. When the book finished I wanted to keep reading, I wanted to know what happens next? How does Sam get on with the rest of his life? I was invested in the family.
For a book that I wasn’t confident on, it turned out to be one of my favourite books this year. So thank you so much for recommending me this book and having me a part of this book blog tour. I have really enjoyed it.
To check out some of the other bloggers who are taking part in this blog tour, search the blog names featured in this picture.
For more on the author, check out his Twitter – @keefstuart
Until next time!
Love & Laughter