Way, way back, when I was editor of a base newspaper for an agency of the US Department of Defense, we used a reading standard for the articles. Most of our base employees were factory workers, and it was part of my job to make sure the newspaper articles were based on a 10th grade reading level. (Both of the previous sentences break the rules. They are both too long.)
There are some tests like this on the Internet, but Steve Cochran II probably didn’t use them.
For example, I wonder if a fourth grader knows what a GPS is? (The initials stand for Global Positioning System.)
How about Cambodia? Mocha-skinned? Spiraling?
(By the way, “Bloody brilliant” is blasphemous.)
Okay, it has been 59 years since I was 10, so I don’t really know the answers to these questions – just wondering.
What I DO know is my copy had some typos and some editing mistakes. I think I received an advance reading copy, so hopefully corrections will be made later. Perhaps a pronoun could be used in this one paragraph: “Around the corner waddled the brown-and-white beagle. ‘Oh, hi there, Milo,’ Santa said. The portly brown-and-white beagle padded his way over . . . .” Ahem, “Beagle” should be capitalized.
Cochran writes this is the first in a possible series. It seems all the rage today to write ten or so related books. I guess you could say that idea goes all the way back to the Sherlock Holmes stories. Or, maybe even to the insides of the pyramids!
It may be nuts for a 69-year-old grandfather to critique a book for ten-year old children, but I was thinking about this for some grandchildren.
They will probably love it.