The Adventures of Dillon Helbig’s Crismis in the library’s collection in Boise, Idaho. CR: Alex Hartman/Ada Community Library

It takes years and years for seasoned authors to find an audience for their books but success seems to have arrived early for Dillon Helbig. The eight-year-old did not even need a literary agent for his book on time travel.

It all started when Helbig received a journal from his grandmother on Christmas. The young author soon filled the journal with a richly illustrated story in just four days. He named the book, The Adventures of Dillon Helbig’s Crismis and ascribed it to “Dillon His Self”. The 81-page story talks about Helbig’s time travel adventures as he gets transported to 1621 after a Christmas tree explodes in his house.

By the end of December, Dillion’s grandmother took him to the Lake Hazel branch of the Ada Community Library in Boise. Ready to share his book with the world, Helbig used this visit to sneak it in and put it on one of the library shelves, hoping to find more readers.

After a few days, when the young boy checked for his book in the library, he found it gone. The book wasn’t lost but discovered by readers and library staff who were charmed by it. The library staff added the book to its catalogue and found it in great demand.

Alex Hartman, the library branch manager, told the Guardian, “Dillon’s book definitely fit all the criteria that we would look for to include a book in our collection.” He also added that Helbig’s debut book has a 55-person waiting list.

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