I can still remember the moment I finished reading my first book sitting in a busy kitchen on the west coast of Ireland, legs swinging, dinner being cooked around me, as the Red Hen bested the Sly Fox and I bested the written word. That’s how it felt, even as a 4-year old - I could do this on my own. The world opened to me.
Years later, I became a teacher and lived that same moment again and again, as the door unlocked for so many children; watched them set off on their journey.
But not all. There were always a few who stumbled, who needed an adult reading along, who slowly developed tricks to avoid books. Their friends swapped books filled with magic and superheroes and we all pretended that it didn't matter that they were still struggling through "baby books". But it did matter.
I studied further. Specialising in dyslexia, in reading difficulties, I started working with individual children, creating materials for just where they were. And they learned and developed successful there, just where they were, in that safe space.
But that safe space wasn’t the real world and, in the real world, they weren’t safe, they were different, excluded.
They wanted to be reading the same books as their friends. They wanted the magic and adventure of those stories; the escape, the dive into those worlds. But how could they dive in when half of the words were sharp rocks and the long, complicated sentences kept washing them back to shore?
I knew the safe space wasn't enough, so Bux Books was born. There are already books on the market that are written especially for children with reading difficulties. But they are not the books that their friends are reading. The mission of Bux Books is to give those children the same books, the same stories as their friends, just easier to read. Just making them independent, just like everybody else!