Speed Reads

future bestseller

Book that 8-year-old author hid at his local library is a hit

Dillon Helbig doesn't need a book deal, publicist, or marketing team — the 8-year-old self-published one copy of his 81-page illustrated book, The Adventures of Dillon Helbig's Crismis, slipped it onto a shelf at his local library, and now has people across the country clamoring to check it out.

Dillon finished the book in mid-December, and did something that was "naughty-ish," he told The Washington Post; during a visit to the Ada Community Library's Lake Hazel Branch in Boise, he left his tome on a shelf in the children's section. A few days later, he told his mom, Susan Helbig, what he did, and when she couldn't find the book where Dillon left it, she called the library and asked if anyone had found it.

By that point, The Adventures of Dillon Helbig's Crismis had already been read by several librarians and their family members, who loved the tale of an exploding star sending Dillon back to the first Thanksgiving and the North Pole. They asked Dillon's permission to make the book a permanent part of the library's collection, and now that word has spread and there are dozens of people on the waiting list, there is talk of turning The Adventures of Dillon Helbig's Crismis into an e-book.

Dillon is on a roll, and is working on his next two books: a sequel where the Grinch comes to visit him, and a brand new story about a closet that eats jackets. "His imagination is just constantly going, and he is a very creative boy," Susan Helbig told the Post. "He just comes up with these amazing stories and adventures, and we just kind of follow along."