I Like to Read
A parent recently asked me for book recommendations and I thought I might post a list of recommended reading. First I wanted to share my biases so you get a sense of where this list comes from and why I think it is important to share it. I read a lot and as far back as I can recall I liked the idea of reading, but was a slow reader. The book suggestions I am going to make are those that I read when I was in elementary and middle school, and probably reflect who I was and would become as a reader. What I feel was important, however, was that I was exposed to a lot of different types of books and was allowed to focus on books and styles that interested me. My reading was heavily supported by my parents in the sense that I saw them reading a lot, they took me to the library and to thrift stores where I could buy cheap books, they read to me a lot, and even read some of the books I read so they could talk about them with me. More than any sort of private education or fancy tutoring, I believe parent support of reading is one of the biggest things parents can do to support their children academically and professionally. Both the research literature and this Psychologist cannot overstate the benefits from reading to children, and facilitating their own reading activities.
So, when I was a youngster, here were some of the books I really enjoyed:
-Anything by Daniel Pinkwater (DM Pinkwater, etc.), but especially Lizard Music.
-The Chronicles of Narnia (CS Lewis).
-The Lord of the Rings (Tolkien).
-Anything by George MacDonald, but especially At the Back of the North Wind.
-Anything by Roald Dahl, but especially The BFG
-The Five Children and It (E. Nesbit)
It is also the case that I started collecting and reading comic books in middle school. Consequently, I still enjoy reading and collecting them. My reading these days spans comic books to research journals, but I have a nice mix of fiction (especially science fiction) and non-fiction (especially advice and how-to books). In the next few weeks I hope to get some guest writers to talk about their reading preferences, so stay tuned for those.