Imagine a young child teased in school for reading aloud. Terribly. How could that child react?
Well, this one – a shy, introvert who enjoys spending time alone, dreaming up magical worlds, singing, dancing, drawing and writing- simply stops reading.
It isn’t until her teacher notices a huge drop in her test scores that it comes to the attention of her Mom. And the race to improve the child’s reading skills begins. It actually becomes an easy job, as the child reads well above her age level; as we know, all writers are great readers. She just doesn’t enjoy it as much as she once does. Until …
Dragonriders of Pern
For me (yes, I am this child), I don’t really enjoy reading again until a friend introduces me to the science fiction book series, Dragonriders of Pern by Anne McCaffrey. By now, I’m a young adult, working in advertising. From here, it’s Frank Herbert’s masterpiece series, Dune and the works of Robert Heinlein (Stranger in a Strange Land, Time Enough for Love and Glory Road are favorites).
Children’s Book Series
The nature of book series -the worlds authors create, the cast of recurring characters, the richness and intimacy of the storytelling – is what hooks me to the quick. Readers of all ages are drawn in with the sights and sounds of the storied imagination, so to speak, which encourages more reading, more imagination, more satisfaction.
Nowadays, children are huge fans of J.K. Rowling’s magnificent Harry Potter series (for the best treat, listen to the award-winning audiobooks, narrated by the oh-so-talented Jim Dale); Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games, the Twilight series by Stephanie Meyer and others (can you say, Diary of a Wimpy Kid?). And you don’t have to be a child to be taken by them.
Certainly, the fascination with book series can continue well into adulthood – consider the popularity of George RR Martin’s A Song of Fire and Ice (aka Game of Thrones) and Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series and the Earth’s Children series (Clan of the Cave Bear) by Jean M. Auel. Yes, book series can open up a whole new world to a reader and a whole new way of learning.
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