November 15, 2017

Books I Want My Kids to Read

Today's Top Ten Tuesday topic is Books I Want My Kids to Read. I think this is really aimed at a younger group who either doesn't have kids yet, or whose kids are younger than mine. But I can still play.

My daughter still lets me recommend books to her. Some of my favorite times are trips we take to the bookstore and we go through the YA section and I tell her about the books I know about and she decides which ones to read. Unlike her mother, she takes the books home and actually reads them! She's still working on one from our last book trip.

My son, on the other hand, is not a huge reader. I mean, he reads, but he doesn't read print books very often. And when he does, he prefers non-fiction, which is a very normal male thing.

The books I would want my kids to read would either be books that tell them about people who are not like themselves or books that are important to me. I would like them to have a view of what it is like to be someone who didn't grow up in middle class, white, suburban, America. Also, I want them to want to get an idea of my inner life through reading my favorite books. Notice that I want them to want it? Probably they never will. But a mom can dream.

March by John Lewis - This graphic novel about Senator John Lewis' experience in the civil rights movement was eye opening for me, and I grew up in schools that celebrated the movement and made sure to teach us about the times. I don't know if my kids really know about overt racism and how abusive it became for black people here in America, not that long ago.

Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo - This is non-fiction, which will also get my son's attention. It is about life in a Mumbai slum. This book clearly describes the way these people live, their political set up and the social rules they follow. It's heartbreaking and terribly sad. This is another one I want them to read to see what life is like in other countries for people who are not as lucky as they are.

The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield - I want them to read this one because I love it so very much. No other reason. Just because it's one of my favorites.

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern - This is another one I want them to read because I love it. They might not love it. But that's okay.

Help, Thanks, Wow by Anne Lamott - Really, any of Lamott's books would work. Her books talk about having a real relationship with God. And the fact that that relationship doesn't necessarily have anything to do with the church or Christianity as they have learned it here in the Bible Belt.

Tolstoy and the Purple Chair by Nina Sankovitch - I love this book and I think by reading it, they might understand how reading can be therapeutic.

Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking by Susan Cain - This book is important. I think they are both introverts, so they need to know that that is okay and actually important.

Rez Life: an Indian's Journey Through Reservation Life by David Treuer - Even though we live in Oklahoma, we don't see what life is like for Indians on the reservation. This is another one of those books I want them to read to learn about other people.

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte - This was my favorite book for 10 years in my childhood. I want them to read it to get an idea of why I am the way I am.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen - Because it's my favorite, duh! Actually, they probably already know the story backwards are forwards, but any Jane Austen novel will work. Especially Sense and Sensibility and Persuasion.

What books do you suggest?