Monday, July 23, 2012

Differences of opinion

Not every book speaks to every person. I know this. It is sometimes painfully apparent in my own family when I can't get my children to fall madly in love with the books I am madly in love with. The other day I heard about some extended family members rejoicing, gleefully, over Junie B. Jones books. I rejoiced hearing that they were rejoicing. But I can't stand Junie B. Jones. We only own one, and I've tried to throw it away several times but it keeps reappearing. Like a Ouija board.

But people are rejoicing gleefully about books, and in this day and age when you get on an airplane and hardly any children are reading books, but instead are staring at a digital device (not a kindle), that's really all that matters. That children somewhere, anywhere, are rejoicing about books.

A bit sad, but true.

We went to the library the other day, me and all five kids, and we picked such different books. I thought I would share some of the things we chose—see if you can find your child in any of these books, and ask yourself if you know the types of books your child would choose.

This is the book I am currently trying to get into. I say trying because it hasn't leapt out at me and grabbed me by the lapels (if I were wearing lapels) and forced me to keep reading. But I haven't wanted to give up on either yet, because I do like it. I just don't love it. So far. It is apparently a good Newbery award contender this year (see below).

The Unfortunate Son by Constance Leeds

Candy Apple Books. These are a bit like Junie B. Jones for me. And I think they are truly like non-nutritive candy for her. But unless I find something offensive I try VERY hard not to censor their reading choices.
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Anything I recommended to her. She's currently going through her first round of Harry Potter (yes, in fifth grade—she hasn't been interested until now), but she found some very interesting choices at the library.
Here are two of her choices:
Wildwood by Colin Meloy and The Mighty Miss Malone by Christopher Paul Curtis
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Total nonfiction. All of these by Sandra Markle.
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Total Star Wars, Phineas and Ferb, Scooby Doo—books written by mystery authors based on TV shows and movies. Death for this mother. I hate these books with a passion that goes far beyond Junie B, and I will confess when he hands me his enormous stack of these to check out, I slip a few of them out of the pile and into the please re-shelve buckets. We just don't need twenty of these puppies laying around (these are also the library books that are impossible to find when they make their way onto our crowded bookshelves). But I do let him get some. I do.

(I'm not even going to post pictures of these. They aren't worth the trouble.)

Anything to do with Henry and Mudge and Annie and Snowball. This is good. I love these books, and I love to read them aloud. (Insert sigh of happiness)
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As a side note, I thought I'd post a list of books I'm going to be getting from the library. These are the Newbury buzz books—the American Library Associations biggest award for middle grade novels.
If you happen to read any of them, let me know what you think!

Wonder by R.J. Palacio
Summer of the Gypsy Moths by Sarah Pennypacker
Three Times Lucky by Sheila Turnage
Splendors and Glooms by Laura Amy Schultz
Starry River of the Sky by Grace Lin

Twelve Kinds of Ice by Ellen Obed
Liar and Spy by Rebecca Stead

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