Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Kids' Picks -- What my kids have read in June

Amanda, who is almost 14, has been in a bit of a holding pattern with her reading. She says that she "only wants to read what I know I'll like," which for her means books that she's already read before.

She did finish book 3 in Kane Chronicles, which I mentioned last month that she had started -- a new book but an old series (Nancy's review will post on Wednesday afternoon).  Then she re-read all of The Clique books she owns (and I fed her interest by buying 3 more off the $1 clearance shelf at Half-Price Books, because spending a day immersed in a book is worth a dollar in my book). 

And then she revisited books 2 and 3 in the The Last Survivors series series (since we don't own #1 Life As We Knew It, and she's read it several times. It's a GREAT series for dystopian loving teens. I love them. They are suitable for 12 and up, I'd say (If your child has read Hunger Games, they could definitely read these). There may be a mild swear word or two and some romance, but nothing specific, as my old brain recalls from a couple of years ago. Amanda read the first one when she was in 6th, I think, and that was okay, but I also think that they may get a bit more intense as the series progresses. The first one also stands alone to an extent.

When I was at Half-Price books with Kyle (a store to which I have quite a devotion/addiction), I saw Kristin Cashore's books Fire and Graceling, which I have heard good things about around the kidlitosphere, so I texted Amanda (because who actually speaks to their teenager?) and asked her to look them up and see if she'd be interested. She was and so I got both of them, and she has started Graceling

My sweet Kyle, 8, (I am calling him that, because I still can't believe that he likes to read. It blows my mind, because unlike Amanda, there was a gap between him being able to read and enjoying reading) is still exploring Hank Zipzer. When our library stash was depleted, there were a couple of weeks when he didn't have any, and I had to work to put books in his hands that he would spend time with.  I picked up 2 or 3 at the library last weekend, so he's back to them.  He reads different passages aloud to me that he really enjoys, and that always warms my heart.

He picked NERDS: National Espionage, Rescue, and Defense Society (Book One) by Michael Buckley off our bookshelf (I haven't read it, but I think Amanda might have). He said he liked it -- "Two chapters is enough to know," -- and I don't want to discourage him, but I it's one I wouldn't usually put into his hands for another year or so. But the fact that it's not a small paperback of 160 pages -- it's a 330 page hardcover -- makes me want to do a happy dance since as recently as a couple of months ago, he shunned any "big books."  As a rising 3rd grader who is a very proficient reader, he really is firmly into that "middle grade" book category. He's already talking about Harry Potter, which I will keep holding him off of for another year if I can, and if he starts them, I'll do as I did with Amanda and make him read them slowly so that Harry doesn't mature too much faster than Kyle.

What are your kids reading? Let us know over at 5 Minutes for Books, or check out what others are recommending.


Nancy said...

I tried to get Alex to read Harry Potter last year, and he read the first few pages before abandoning it. Maybe 4th grade will be the time for it. I also won't let him watch the movies until he's read the books so I've been using that as a negotiating point.

E.S. Ivy said...

I can relate to not wanting to read a book unless I *know* I am going to enjoy it - I felt the same way as a younger reader. Basically for me that meant the ending had to be happy so I didn't get enthralled by the book only to be left with a yucky feeling.

My son devoured the first Harry Potter in 2nd grade and that turned him into a reader, but he never cared to finish the series. While my daughter I then had to hold the reigns tightly, and still she managed to talk me into letting her finish them in the fifth grade. :)Second daughter is in the middle of the same process.

My son is the same age as your daughter and loves Rick Riordan; he's looking forward to the last Artemis fowl book next week. Daughter 1 just finished the Mysterious Benedict Society series and Once Upon a Marigold. Daughter 2 is finishing up the Wee Free Men series by Terry Pratchett (also a favorite of my son.)