My daughter, Janice, took pity on me this week since I'm trying to finish a manuscript and have it ready to turn in before leaving for a family vacation. She surprised me by writing a blog for me. She's a big fan of children's and young adult books. Here are her reasons why.
Why I read books written for kids.
1. Reading a picture book out loud to my preschooler is a fun way to spend time together. It's also a great excuse to stop doing house work for a few minutes.
2. Reading middle readers to my emerging reader is a good way to entice my children into the world of reading. When my oldest child was intimidated by real chapter books, I read a chapter out loud and then put the book down. He couldn't stand the suspense and had to pick it up. (I finished it after he was done.)
3. Reading the same books my children read provides great conversation topics. I also get inside jokes that my husband doesn't.
4. My 11 year old loves to recommend books to me. I guess I've recommended so many books to him, he feels like he should return the favor. And I must say, the kid has pretty good taste.
5. I get to revisit some of the great books from my past as I introduce them to my daughter. My son won't read Anne of Green Gables, but my daughter will.
6. I pick books out at the library and read them first, then tell my kids that they'll like them too. They've come to trust my judgment in books. Now if only I could get them to be so trusting at dinner time.
7. Since I've read so many YA books, I know which books I prefer my children not read - either for a few more years or ever. The choice will be theirs, but I will tell them what I don't like about books I find objectionable.
8. YA books tend to be funnier than books written for adults. I also don't find as much objectionable content in them.
9. YA books also tend to be shorter than books written for adults. I can start and finish a book on the same day.
10. Like my mom, I'm a writer too. Unlike my mom, I've only had a couple short stories published, I write YA, and my characters don't wear cowboy hats. So reading YA is research. In fact, I think I hear some research calling now.