"Human beings were never born to read," writes neuroscientist and child development expert Maryanne Wolf in this provocative, groundbreaking book. Considering literary childhood memories and also the scientist's use of the squid brain for neurological research, Wolf describes reading as a human invention that reflects how the brain rearranges itself to learn something new. She chronicles the development of the reading brain both over the past 5,000 years, since writing began, and over the course of a single child's life, explaining in the process why children with dyslexia have reading difficulties and also singular gifts. Wolf asserts that the brain that examined the clay tablets of the Sumerians was very different from the one immersed in today's technology-driven literacy, and that changes in how we read today have implications for the intellectual development of our species. Six-time Audie Award nominee Kirsten Potter reads Wolf's unabridged text.
"Blindingly fascinating ... detailed and scholarly.... For people interested in language, this is a must. You’ll find yourself focusing on words in new ways."—Sunday Telegraph (London)