Friday, April 4, 2008

What about Books?

I've been thinking a bit lately and it's time for me to confess something.'s not totally a secret. My parents already know this about me and very likely have had a good chuckle or two at my expense. For all the books in my sidebar and all the ones I discuss on my blog, I have never been an avid reader. There. I said it. When I was young I was more of a "do-er" than a reader. I pretty much read when I had to save for a three year stint of mysteries and horror books that I tried out in middle school. Once I hit high school I basically read what I had to. In college and graduate school...much of the same. I read a lot of text in those days.

These days I enjoy catching up on all the great books I missed out on while I was busy "doing" things when I was younger. I read a ton for information and really devour anything related to homeschooling or being a mom. However, truth be told, I still pass on random fiction. Fact is, I'm still busy and I'm still a "doer"! If given the choice of one of my hobbies or curling up with a book, I almost always choose the hobby or the computer!

What made me think of this? Well E9 actually. The other day he and I had a conversation about books. He is a voracious reader. He reads anything he can his hands on and more or so I thought. It's hard to keep a 9 yr old who can read 300-500 pages in just a few days in books that are emotionally appropriate for him. I also have a hard time getting him to branch out in genres or try a new series. Six months ago he would have nothing to do with the Hardy Boys, but finally he is enjoying them. What I have found is that he is extremely discerning when it comes to books. Seriously. Our conversation the other day went something like this:

Me: "So, E9 do you like all the Redwall books the same or are the earlier ones better than the later ones?"

E9: "I like the first few the best. I think it is because of the characters and their personalities. I'm most familiar with them."

Me: "Would you say they are better books?"

E9: "No, I mean all of his books are well written."

Me: "Really because sometimes when an author..."

E9: (cuts me off and says) "Yeah. I know. When an author writes tons of books sometimes they write just to write and it isn't any good."

Me: "Yeah, but Brian Jacques isn't like that?"

E9: "Oh no! All of his books are good."

He acknowledges that some of the Hardy Boys books are good enough to read again and some were good enough to read once. Still others aren't worth reading at all. For a boy who can read the descriptive language in Redwall over and over, he needs a fast moving mystery!

Anyway, it struck me that for a 9yo boy he has already decided that some books are junk and not worth his time. I haven't quite nailed down his criteria, but for now I'm impressed by his discernment.

And Mom and Dad...take heart! You were right. Eventually I did start reading more!

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