One of the best things about working in the field of Kid Literature is getting the chance to read so much great new (and old) stuff. Even better may be the opportunity to work and talk with kids who are discovering and experiencing these books for the first time. Forget the classics lists, the best of lists, the bestseller lists.. . .what are kids really reading and what do they think about it? From toddlers to teenagers, it’s fascinating to really talk with kids and find out what they’re enjoying (or not!) and why.
8th Grade can be a rough time (sorry guys, but the great news is that life only gets better!), but one of the joys of it is the discovery. Remember the first book where you thought- “Oh my God, the author totally gets me, in a way that no one I know ever has?” The first time you thought “How did they think of that?” The first time you read something slightly salacious (a V. C. Andrews book for me!), or about a subject you found so interesting that you thought that maybe you could spend your life studying that one thing?
Luckily for us, and you, there are some generous and articulate kids willing to share with us what they’re reading and what they think about it. Erin Ocon’s eighth-grade students in Hillsboro, Oregon graciously agreed to give us a little insight into what they’ve been reading lately. It’s not all recommendations, but rather thoughtful essays on a recently-read book.
For us, this has been a wonderful door to remembering what discovering what a favorite book felt like (Thanks Erik! I loved Fahrenheit 451, and read it about the same time as Breakfast of Champions, both of which really blew my mind, and I loved reading about how you felt about this book that was important to me, too) as well as a chance to get some recommendations for our own reading lists (Thank you Monica, for reviewing ALL of the The Last Dragon Chronicles books- hello??? Series, and fantasy and pertaining to Guinevere in any way? Why have I not already read this?!)
So stay tuned and check out one new review every week for the next few months. Thanks guys, you really took us back- in the best possible way!
Review of the week: