How to Get Your Child to Read

A friend of mine posted this cartoon on Facebook and I immediately shared. It’s so true! This is also a conversation my husband and I have on the regular since he reads about a book a year (if that).

However, I had a realization/question. What about those parents/caregivers that read ebooks? They’re still reading but reading on a device. How does that impact the child’s reading habits? Is it still being modeled appropriately to encourage reading in the child? If anyone has any insights into this, I’d greatly appreciate it!

29357111_1801911146777427_4697468185186717050_n

Advertisements

Dazzling Displays

It’s been a while since I shared any of our displays! This first one was created by a lovely teen volunteer for Black History Month.

IMG_7164

Children were invited to write their dream on the stars and clouds and then we attached them to the display. Very creative!

IMG_7017

I created our behind the desk display in Mid February. I needed a little bit of color! This doesn’t look that hard, but it took forever! I also should have cleaned up a bit before taking the picture. Oops.

IMG_7216

This display replaced the Black History Month display in mid-March. Again, we needed a little bit of color and springy-ness in our lives. The original display I copied had the first duck reading a book, but I didn’t trust my duck drawing abilities so I found a duck print online and blew it up. Unfortunately, the duck is facing the wrong way for reading. The display doesn’t quite make sense now, but it’s still fun.

The Case for Romance: The Experiment Ends

Well, I officially only read Romance in February. I learned a few things, enjoyed myself for the most part, and have lots of questions.

 

First, I’ll start with what I read.

By Tessa Dare, I read: Do You Want to Start a Scandal?; Any Duchess Will Do; Beauty and the Blacksmith; When a Scot Ties the Knot; The Duchess Deal; Twice Tempted by a Rogue.

By Maya Banks, I read: In Bed with a Highlander; Seduction of a Highland Lass; Never Love a Highlander; Highlander Most Wanted

By Sarah MacLean, I read: The Rogue Not Taken; A Scot in the Dark; and tried to read The Day of the Duchess but gave up.

By Grace Burrowes: Too Scot to Handle

By Johanna Linday: Wildfire in His Arms

 

What I learned and what I want to know:

I learned that I like Grace Burrowes (reminds me a bit of Lauren Willig) and Tessa Dare the most. Specificaclly, Too Scot to Handle and When a Scot Ties the Knot. I learned that Maya Banks is probably the most sexist and violent (a lot of possession and mine and overly dramatic “protection”).

I also learned there are a lot less rapes than I expected* (although there is plenty of threat of rape from non-hero characters, especially in the Scottish ones), the heroines aren’t always innocent and pure and virginal (although I only read books published in the last 10 years or so), and finally, it’s really hard to find a historical romance not in England or Scotland. Which brings me to my questions.

What is the obsession with Napoleonic England and Highland Scotland? Why are the heroes always “big” or apparently of above average height and strength who tower over everyone or fill up doorframes? Why did it take me most of the afternoon to find a romance set in the American West that is available on Ebook that is not a Beverly Jenkins? Not that there is anything wrong with Jenkins, but I’ve already read some of her books and I wanted to try new things. With the popularity of WWII books (and the beginnings of a 20s fascination), why aren’t there historical romances set in those periods? The early 1900s is very similar to Napoleonic England– there are still rules and nobility and titles, and I would have thought the popularity of Downton Abbey would inspire some romance copycats.

I’m a bit romanced out for now, but I will certainly be coming back. I was snowed in last weekend and I made myself a nice indent in the couch since all I did was read and watch Netflix.

*I’m sure if I read some romance books from the 70s/80s and possibly 90s there’d be more violence against women marketed as “romance.” Outlander is just one example.

The Case for Romance

I like romance, but I’ve (almost) always steered towards the “literary” version of romance (i.e. anything not mass market paperback and/or cataloged as romance). Lauren Willig’s Pink Carnation series is a perfect example. However, I’ve been reading more and more about romance and why it’s important, and also how dumb it is that romance readers and authors are so harshly judged. Especially considering that romance readers make up a HUUUGE portion of the reading public. I don’t actually know any statistics, but I wouldn’t be shocked if the money from romance allows publishers to publish the award winning literary fiction. According to this article, it is certainly the most profitable genre… From the library perspective, our romance readers most certainly keep our circulation statistics up.

I have two personal examples of the judgement surrounding romance books, their authors, and their readership. Both of which have encouraged me to read more romance, so in the month of February I will be reading all romance (except my audiobooks during commute time). So far this month, I’ve read Do You Want to Start a Scandal, Any Duchess Will DoBeauty and the BlacksmithWhen a Scot Ties the Knot, and The Duchess Deal by Tessa Dare. Also, Wildfire in His Arms by Johanna Lindsey.

I started reading Paris in Love by Eloisa James and realized James is from the same small town in Minnesota as my friend’s dad. Which is pretty cool. It’s also really cool that in her regular life she’s Mary Bly, a Shakespeare professor. At a holiday party at my friend’s house I was talking to her dad and grandma (dad’s mom) about Mary Bly/Eloisa James, and grandma jumped in the middle of me talking about how cool I think it is that she’s a Shakespeare professor and a romance author, with “and now she writes smut.”

I was browsing shelves at the library trying to find something that struck my fancy (as I’m in yet another reading slump) when I saw a Do You Want to Start a Scandal miscataloged as fiction. I grabbed it so I could send it in to the correct person to fix it, but then decided to check it out instead. When my husband saw it on my nightstand his immediate reaction was, “what are you reading? I didn’t realize you read this kind of book.”

Sting the Dog

Minnesota sure likes their library animals… Another cutie pie from my great state went viral this weekend. Sting is a therapy dog and visited the White Bear Lake Library for their “Paws to Read” program, but no readers showed up! The library posted the picture to Twitter and other social media outlets, (I first saw it through We Rate Dogs on Twitter). According to an Minnesota Public Radio article, Sting’s calendar is filled through April, and I hear Sting received phone calls from all over the country from people who wanted to read to the lonely pup.

As an aside, I love this program, and love that we do it my library too. Sting’s library even reached out to other local libraries asking for their Read to a Dog program schedules in order to send eager readers to visit other dogs, once Sting’s schedule was full. Hopefully, this little viral story will continue parents to bring their children to dog reading programs, and encourage extra reading.

2017 Reading Challenges in Review

I’m back! Sorry for about the long absence. Storytimes stopped for the winter session, I crammed in the last March book before flying out to the in-laws for Christmas, and then I went out of the country for 2ish weeks. So not a lot of time to blog (although I didn’t read anything aside from the March books anyway).

I did pretty well on my reading challenges this year (although I don’t think I was the greatest at blogging about them all). I had grand plans to read on the plane and in the car while on my trip, to finish up Book Riot’s Read Harder challenge, but that didn’t happen. In the end, I completed the PopSugar and Modern Mrs. Darcy challenges. I almost finished Book Riot, but did not read “A book set in Central or South America, written by a Central or South American author,” “A travel memoir,” or “A classic by an author of color.”

Popsugar Reading Challenge:

A book recommended by a librarian After I Do by Taylor Jenkins Reid
A book that’s been on your TBR list for way too long The Art Forger by B.A. Shapiro
A book of letters I Hate Everyone But You by Gaby Dunn and Allison Raskin
An audiobook Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen
A book by a person of color Rich People Problems by Kevin Kwan
A book with one of the four seasons in the title That Summer by Lauren Willig
A book that is a story within a story Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid
A book with multiple authors The Forgotten Room by Karen White, Beatriz Williams and Lauren Willig
An espionage thriller Mr. Churchill’s Secretary by Susan Ella MacNeal
A book with a cat on the cover Audacity Jones to the Rescue by Kirby Larson
A book by an author who uses a pseudonym Crowned and Dangerous by Rhys Bowen
A bestseller from a genre you don’t normally read Forbidden by Beverly Jenkins
A book by or about a person who has a disability The War that Saved My Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
A book involving travel The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith
A book with a subtitleA book with a subtitle Little Boxes: 12 Writers on Television edited by Caroline Casey
A book that’s published in 2017 On Her Majesty’s Frightfully Secret Service by Rhys Bowen
A book involving a mythical creature My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows
A book you’ve read before that never fails to make you smile Her Royal Spyness by Rhys Bowen
A book about food The Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Standhal
A book with career advice Scrappy Little Nobody by Anna Kendrick
A book from a nonhuman perspective Appleblossom the Possum by Holly Goldberg Sloan
A steampunk novel Rebel Magisters by Shanna Swendson
A book with a red spine Rebel Mechanics by Shanna Swendson
A book set in the wilderness The Poet’s Dog by Cynthia MacLachlan
A book you loved as a child Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder
A book by an author from a country you’ve never visited Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
A book with a title that’s a character’s name George by Alex Gino
A novel set during wartime When the Moon is Low by Nadia Hashimi
A book with an unreliable narrator Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough
A book with pictures The Marvels by Brian Selznick
A book where the main character is a different ethnicity than you Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han
A book about an interesting woman One Day We’ll All Be Dead and None of This Will Matter by Scaachi Koul
A book set in two different time periods The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
A book with a month or day of the week in the title The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt
A book set in a hotel A True Home by Kallie George
A book written by someone you admire The English Wife by Lauren Willig
A book that’s becoming a movie in 2017 Wonder Woman Vol. 1: The Lies by Greg Rucka
A book set around a holiday other than Christmas The Mark of the Midnight Manzanilla by Lauren Willig
The first book in a series you haven’t read before Amulet: The Stonekeeper by Kazu Kibuishi
A book you bought on a trip I’ve Got your Number by Sophie Kinsella

Modern Mrs. Darcy Reading Challenge:

Put the Oomph Back in Your Reading Life
A book you chose for the cover Rebel Mechanics by Shanna Swendson
A book with a reputation for being un-put-down-able My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows
A book set somewhere you’ve never been but would like to visit Rich People Problems by Kevin Kwan
A book you’ve already read I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella
A juicy memoir Scrappy Little Nobody by Anna Kendrick
A book about books or reading Romance Reader’s Guide to Life by Sharon Pywell
A book in a genre you usually avoid Wonder Woman Vol. 1: The Lies by Greg Rucka
A book you don’t want to admit you’re dying to read On her Majesty’s Frightfully Secret Service by Rhys Bowen
A book in the backlist of a new favorite author Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid
A book recommended by someone with great taste The Art Forger by B.A. Shapiro
A book you were excited to buy or borrow but haven’t read yet Crowned and Dangerous by Rhys Bowen
A book about a topic or subject you already love Rebel Magisters by Shanna Swendson
Stretch Yourself in 2017
A Newbery Award winner or Honor Book The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt
A book in translation Load Poems Like Guns: : Women’s Poetry from Herat, Afghanistan edited by Farzana Marie
A book that’s more than 600 pages The Marvels by Brian Selznick
A book of poetry, a play or an essay collection Poisoned Apples: Poems for You My Pretty by Christine Heppermann
A book of any genre that addresses current events One Day We’ll All Be Dead and None of This Will Matter by Scaachi Koul
An immigrant story When the Moon is Low by Nadia Hashimi
A book published before you were born Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder
Three books by the same author Maybe in Another Life, After I Do, and The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
A book by #ownvoices or #diversebooks author Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han
A book with an unreliable narrator or ambiguous ending Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough
A book nominated for an award in 2017 George by Alex Gino
A Pulitizer Prize or National Book Award winner March: Book 3 by John Lewis

Book Riot Read Harder Challenge:

A book about sports Spinning by Tillie Walden
A debut novel The Art Forger by B.A. Shapiro
A book about books The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt
A book set in Central or South America, written by a Central or South American author Fruit of the Drunken Tree by Ingrid Rojas Contreras (what I planned to read)
A book about an immigrant or with a central immigration narrative When the Moon is Low by Nadia Hashimi
An all ages comic Amulet: The Stonekeeper by Kazu Kibuishi
A book published between 1900 and 1950 Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder
A travel memoir Paris in Love by Eloisa James (DNF in time)
A book you’ve read before I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella
A book that is set within 100 miles of your location The Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Standhal
A book that is set more than 5000 miles from your location Rich People Problems by Kevin Kwan
A fantasy novel My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows
A nonfiction book about technology Dear Data by Giorgia Lupi and Stefanie Posavec
A book about war The War that Saved My Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
A YA or middle grade novel by an author who identifies as LGBTQ The Marvels by Brian Selznick
A book that has been banned or frequently challenged in your country George by Alex Gino
A classic by an author of color Indigo by Beverly Jenkins (DNF in time)
A superhero comic with a female lead Wonder Woman Vol. 1: The Lies by Greg Rucka
A book in which a character of color goes on a spiritual journey March: Book 1 by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, and Nate Powell
An LGBTQ romance novel The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Reid Jenkis
A book published by a micropress Little Boxes edited by Caroline Casey
A collection of stories by a woman One Day We’ll All Be Dead and None of this Will Matter by Saachi Koul
A collection of poetry in translation on a theme other than love Load Poems Like Guns: Women’s Poetry from Herat, Afghanistan edited by Farzana Marie
A book wherein all point-of-view characters are people of color Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han

Best Books of 2017

It’s that time of year again. When I realize I’ve read one, maybe two, of the year’s “Best Books,” as decided by those lofty taste makers. It doesn’t help my cause that I’m notoriously bad at reading new books (although last year wasn’t too bad). Remember those lists I made last year of the new books I couldn’t wait to read? Well, I think I read one of them. Oops.

I do own the Goodreads book of the year, The Hate U Give, and I’m hoping to read that by the end of the year. Other winners include:

Pachinko by Min Jin Lee which I’ve heard great things about. My former mother daughter book club (which is just the mothers now, and sometimes me), is reading it for their next book, so I might tag along. (NYT)

Priestdaddy by Patricia Lockwood which Jeff and Rebecca mention at least once a month on the Book Riot podcast. So now I’m really intrigued. (NYT)

image

When Dimple Met Rishi  by Sandhya Menon, which I was really excited about and I tried reading, but just couldn’t do it. I tried at least three times. (NPR)

For your own reading pleasure, I’m going to provide some links below to Best Books of 2017 lists.

New York Times Ten Best Books of 2017

School Library Journal Best Books of 2017

Goodreads Best Books of 2017

Publishers Weekly Best Books 2017