“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” – Dr. Suess
Last week, my middle son graduated from the 5th grade. Sometimes, moving up from 5th to 6th grade isn’t a big deal, but at my sons’ school it is. They celebrate the jump from Elementary to Middle Schools as if it’s the huge accomplishment it is. They’re no longer kids– they’re young adults.
At their school, at every Gathering (school assembly), a student reads a book in front of the whole crowd. Usually, the chosen book is a short picture book, with the illustrations projected for the audience to see, too. But at the 5th grade graduation gathering, the principals read Dr. Suess’s famed book, OH, THE PLACES YOU’LL GO! And when I heard it read in front of a diverse crowd of budding children and important people in the audience, I remembered just how important books really are.
Books inspire us, move us, expand our ourlooks, take us on journeys, and show us a world of possibility outside our front doors.
I love to read. It’s true. And as a writer, it’s even more important that I read — to learn, grow, and become as a writer.
This year, I challenged myself to read 50 books in 2012. A tough goal, but I’m really enjoying it. It’s fun for a reader. (Who needs tv? Okay, except Downton Abbey …) I’m well on my way to meeting the goal. Now, at almost halfway through the year, I’ve logged 30 books so far (and a few extras). I keep track over at Goodreads.
My family and I have collected a few wonderful piles of books to read this summer (photo, above). For my soon-to-be 10-year-old, many Avi books. My 11-year-old has found his niche reading about basketball, in non-fiction or fiction. And my 13-year-old reads the most, on ancient Egypt, Greece, Rome, and other Percy Jackson-like stories. For me, I’m excited to read books I’ve heard so much about but haven’t read yet, like THE LIFE OF PI and Ann Patchett’s STATE OF WONDER. For my husband, we’ve collected a few Le Carre novels and Madeleine Albright’s new PRAGUE WINTER.
Other must reads for this summer:
- THE UNFINISHED WORK OF ELIZABETH D by Nichole Bernier
- upcoming in September, HEMINGWAY’S GIRL by Erika Robuck
A few great readers’ resources and links:
- Shelf Awareness: A great site and bi-weekly newsletter with news on the latest reads.
- Goodreads: the Social Media Facebook-like site for readers
- The Book Reporter: recent reviews and recommendations for readers
What books are you most looking forward to reading this summer?