Reading below your grade level


"Edward knew what it was like to say over and over again the names of those you had left behind.  He knew what it was like to miss someone. And so he listened.  And in his listening, his heart opened wide and then wider still"-The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo

Almost nine years ago when my daughter arrived on the scene, I discovered the joy of reading children's books.  Kids books are like the early, analog version of twitter.  The "character" limits aren't established by a technology, but by limited attention spans.  The wit isn't a function of keeping your followers entertained, it's a function of making sure that parents enjoy the read as much as the kids.  That's no small feat.

There's a tone of sincerity in children's literature because the author has to be clear, concise, and engaging.  Just like a good tweet!

So, if you're bored with the list on the NYTimes or if Oprah's Book Club is just too depressing, go to the children's section or young adult area to freshen up your reading list.  I'll save my picture book list for another post, but until then here are a few of my favorite "Chapter Books" to get you started:

Let me know your discoveries.  We're always looking to read below our grade level!


I wrote the post above almost three years ago and I'm happy to report, I'm still a fan of Young Adult literature. Like many of you, I skipped through the John Green books (Paper Towns is my favorite) and found The Hunger Games series to be a fun romp.  I've loved your suggestions for finding great writing, but I'm wondering  where you stand on the Young Adult craze.

My favorites from 2011 still apply today!