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August 17, 2009

Reading at a young age.

I've been a voracious reader ever since I was 4 years old, devouring books like they were candy. When I was growing up, I kind of felt like that was the normal thing to do, that everybody was like me in that respect. I learned later in life that this wasn't the case, and is even less so today. Would I have been the same if I had had as many different stimuli as kids these days do (Internet, video games, texting, etc)? I don't know. I like to think so, but who knows? Kids just don't read that much these days.

Which is why I was ecstatic about the success of Harry Potter 14 years or so ago.

Finally, kids were reading! The books were flying off the bookshelves, and kids were getting enthused about them. This showed me that maybe, just maybe, there may be hope for the current generation as far as reading goes. Yes, it's a fantasy series about wizards and such, but just getting them to crack open a book was at least a minor success.

Did it lead to children moving on to other reading? That I'm not sure about. I like to think so, but I don't have any data to back that up (I'm sure there's a study out there somewhere). There does appear to be a lot of Young Adult fiction out there, both fantasy as well as regular fiction, but I'm not sure how popular it is.

Which brings me to Twilight. Since Harry Potter ended a couple of years ago, I'm very happy to see that there's another series that seems to have caught the eyes of children everywhere. I haven't read any Twilight, so I'm not going to comment on the series itself. But I know my nieces have all gone nuts over it (at least the older two, I'm not sure about the youngest). It's so good to see another successful Young Adult series out there, keeping kids reading. I hope it also translates into kids furthering their reading pleasures.

Reading is so fundamental to a fulfilling life, and I wish we made more time for it as a society. I can't count the number of adults I've spoken to who have said that they would like to read more, but they don't have time. Or that they just were never that much into reading in the first place. That saddens me, as it's been such an important part of my life since I can remember. It's a vital way of obtaining information, whether it's in news articles or on the web, or in a book, reading is so important. If you're a parent, I hope you're able to pass that along to your kids. Sure, TV and movies are great. But the written word is the most important thing out there.

This post was inspired by my cousin's post about reading Twilight. See what happens, Cuz, when you mention me, even in passing? :P


  1. You are so right. I'm glad our girls love to read. Your dad now has a book in his hand all thje time. I do to but maybe not as much as him. You can't do well in school if you don't like to read. Do you suppose you got the bug because we read to you from the time you were a baby.? I'd like to think I was partly responsible for that. Good review.

  2. Don't know why I didn't comment on this before. :) I think you and Dad reading to me did have a great deal to do with my love of reading.

    And I now always have a book on my belt, if not in my hand, with the iPhone have a really cool book reader on it. :)


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