By BILL KOHLER
7:55 PM EST, January 15, 2013
Jadon Jetnarayan is every bit an American 8-year-old boy.
He comes from a big, loving family, and enjoys playing soccer and video games. He loves adventure and enjoys fishing. He has a jet-black shock of hair and a great smile.
But the second-grader at Shalom Christian Academy has done something most elementary school students have not — published a book.
Jadon, together with his father, Vishal Jetnarayan, published his first book, “Fearless Boy,” which aims to help children overcome their fears and pursue their destinies. The book focuses on Jadon’s family life and how his parents, Vishal and mom, Selena, inspire him through stories and encouragement.
It was that encouragement that led Jadon to want to share his story of courage and overcoming fear.
When Jadon was 6 and his family was on vacation in North Carolina, he grabbed his frightened sister, Ashria, then 4, and held her back from a copperhead snake that was about to strike. Their mom heard them yelling and quickly ran to the rescue.
He writes in the book, “It felt good that I protected my sister.”
Stories are an important part of the family’s life as Jadon writes and his father explained during an interview Tuesday at eGenCo. Publishing near Chambersburg.
“I love story time with my parents, especially when they talk about other children who have overcome their own fears,” Jadon writes in the book.
“Fearless Boy” tells about boys from different cultures who faced their fears head-on, learning about honor and discipline in the process.
Vishal Jetnarayan said the mission behind the book was not to sell thousands of copies, but to “truly get the message out there.”
“We are more focused on impacting the lives of children and helping them to know that they can defeat fear,” said Vishal Jetnarayan, owner of eGenCo. Publishing, which published the book.
The mission also turned into a good family project, as Serena produced the photography-based illustrations in the book and Ashria and brother Jesiah were in several photographs and were mentioned in the book.
“This was a solid family project,” Vishal Jetnarayan said. “This is the first time we did a book as a family. We will see what happens.”
Vishal Jetnarayan also credits Jadon’s teachers at Shalom for not only their influence during the school day but for critiquing the book and making helpful suggestions so it was suitable for the 6-to-10-year-old target audience.
“It really is about telling children that every person — from children to adults — has fears,” Vishal Jetnarayan said. “And this book tells them that they can face their fears and deal with them and not run away.”
Jadon and his father will hold a book-release celebration Jan. 30 from 9:30 to 10 a.m. at Shalom Christian Academy, 126 Social Island Road off U.S. 11 south of Chambersburg.
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