Reading Thoughts

School’s Out for Summer – READ READ READ!

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For many children, school is now out for summer. If not, they are counting down the days. Studies show that students drop reading levels at the start of a new year from lack of summer reading. Don’t let this happen to a child you know!

Summer is a time of lazy days with more daylight – more light for reading time! Encourage children to keep their mind active over the summer months. Here are just a few reading ideas.

  1. Join your library reading program. Many libraries have fun themes, extra activities, and even prizes!
  2. Read a book in a hammock.
  3. Start your morning with a puzzle.
  4. Tell ghost stories (or any story) around the camp fire.
  5. Take a book to the beach, park, grandparent’s house, or anyone else.
  6. Listen to audio books on road trips.
  7. Act out your favorite book.
  8. Read a book about stars then star gaze.
  9. Read a book about gardening then help plant your own garden.
  10. Adults also read to show an example.
  11. Read to the family dog/cat/hamster. (They don’t care if mistakes are made.)
  12. Have a bookclub and discuss the book.
  13. Read a book before bed. (Instead of tv time)
  14. Read about the place you’re going to visit or where you’d like to go.
  15. Pick up any book and just read!!!




Writing 101 Challenge: Loss

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‘Write about a loss: something (or someone) that was part of your life, and isn’t any more’.

I had difficulty with today’s writing prompt, because I couldn’t think of one particular item or individual. I thought of what makes me sad that is no longer there. I suddenly got the idea of local libraries and bookstores closing.

I drive by a podiatry clinic in my neighborhood and sigh each time I pass it. Many may wonder what’s wrong with me, since nothing is wrong with my feet. The problem is that the clinic was a small library. It breaks my heart to see the small building now taking care of feet. There were shelves of books, movies, music, and more. Now people sit in waiting chairs than a comfy couch reading. It saddens me knowing someone may not have access to these materials.

A similar loss is when small bookstores close. They often can’t stand against the changing times. This is very unfortunate. I always smile when I enter a bookstore and feel at home. When I hear about bookstores closing it almost feels like a part of me closed. It doesn’t matter if I visited the bookstore often, occasionally, or never. Instead it’s just one more place where my soul had a chance to open to the wonder of books and reading.

The definition of a book has even changed and a slight loss is felt. I own a kindle, but it took me forever to finally purchase one. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I read a book on my kindle. To me, it’s almost a loss in society as books have changed so much.

True, people are still reading and some may say there’s an increase in reading. However, there’s nothing like holding a book in your hands, turning actual pages, and smelling the paper.

The loss of libraries, bookstores, and the definition of books saddens me. Books and their ‘homes’ have been in use for thousands of years. Hopefully, the ‘changing times’ won’t increase more losses.

Importance of a Book Friend

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Have you ever felt so connected to a book character that they almost feel like a friend? Sometimes when I finish a book it almost seems I lost a friend. This may sound weird or cheesy to some people, but I’m sure book lovers agree with this feeling. (Even if they don’t want to admit it.) However, it’s not exactly like losing a book friend instead you’re gaining their experiences, thoughts, and emotions. Perhaps your book friend is someone you strive to become or who you once were. Do you relate with a character similar to you or are you the complete opposite? Books allow us to go anywhere and experience the character’s journey. Also, we have different groups of friends, so it’s appropriate that we can have different book friends at various times. Which book friend most relates to you?

Help! I Need a Book that Hooks Me!

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Recently, I’ve had difficulty finding a book that keeps my attention. I start a book then quickly lose interest. Perhaps I’m not giving enough time and effort to determine whether I want to read a book. Last weekend I went to a used bookstore in the hopes that a book would scream from the shelf ‘read me, read me!’ Sadly after spending an hour at the bookstore, no book hooked me. I then thought perhaps I’d visit an old friend and reread a book. Readers gain insight each time the book is read again. This almost worked, but I still wasn’t fully hooked into a book. Here are some recent titles that I started then stopped: Divergent, Catcher in the Rye, Jane Eyre, To Kill a Mockingbird, and Oleander Girl. I’m even embarrassed to say that I didn’t read my last book club book, however I still attended to eat and greet.

I need YOUR help. What books do you suggest to hook me?


Happy Reading on Read Across America Day

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In honor of Dr. Seuss‘ birthday (March 2nd) is Read Across America Day. Dr. Seuss sparked reading with fun rhymes and good messages. The National Education Association (NEA) marked the calendar this year for March 1st, so schools across the country can participate. Schools, libraries, and other locations plan special activities for this event. So, grab your Dr. Seuss hat and any book to READ, READ, READ! Every day is great day for reading! seuss4

You’re never too old, too wacky, too wild,
To pick up a book and read with a child.
You’re never too busy, too cool, or too hot,
To pick up a book and share what you’ve got.

In schools and communities,
Let’s gather around,
Let’s pick up a book,
Let’s pass it around.

There are kids all around you,
Kids who will need
Someone to hug,
Someone to read.

Come join us March 1st
Your own special way
And make this America’s
Read to Kids Day.

(National Education Association Read Across America Poem)

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”
― Dr. Seuss

I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!


2012 Book & Reading Review

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Reading Highlights:

  • Joined two book clubs.
  • Completed my 2012 reading goal to read at least 20 books.
  • Started a book journal to list summaries and my thoughts about books.

Here’s a list of the books that I read in 2012. I underlined my favorite books read from this year.

Favorite Books from 2012:

  1. The Night Circus Erin Morgenstern
  2. The 19th Wife by 
    David Ebershoff
  3. Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese

  4. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
  5. The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling
  6. The Doctor and the Diva by Adrienne McDonnell
  7. The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration by Isabel Wilkerson
  8. My Korean Deli: Risking It All for a Convenience Store by Ben Ryder Howe
  9. Gold by  Chris Cleave
  10. Atlas of Unknowns by Tania James
  11. The Best of Everything by Rona Jaffe
  12. Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín
  13. The Chaperone  by Laura Moriarty
  14. 13, rue Thérèse by Elena Mauli Shapiro
  15. A Dog’s Journey by  W. Bruce Cameron
  16. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
  17. A Woman’s Place by Lynn Austin
  18. Never Eighteen by Megan Bostic*
  19. The Hunger Games Series by Suzanne Collins
  20. Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
  21. Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford (reread)
  22. Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling (reread)
  23. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith (reread)

What were some books that you read in 2012? Hopefully, 2013 is filled with pages of wonderful books!

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This week is banned book week. Challenged and banned books are celebrated and each individual has the freedom to read whatever they desire. I still smile when I read this excerpt from Harry Potter.

Children's Books & More

Any student found in possession of the magazine The Quibbler will be expelled.

For some reason, every time Hermione caught sight of one of these signs she beamed with pleasure.

‘What exactly are you so happy about?’ Harry asked her.

‘Oh, Harry don’t you see?’ Hermione breathed. ‘If she could have done one thing to make absolutely sure that every single person in this school will read your interview, it was banning it!’

– J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, page 512)

I remembered this small conversation between Harry and Hermione from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix after yesterday’s post about censorship in The Day They Came to Arrest the Book. (Yes, I’ve read them enough times to recall certain phrases.) I don’t think this conversation spoils the book if you haven’t read it yet. The basic idea is…

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