Armchair BEA: From Picture Books To Young Adult

June 1 2013

Today’s topic encompasses a large number of books once again. Today we are talking about books that range from children’s picture books all the way too young adult novels. These various books appeal to such a wide age range and cover so many topics that it’s truly a wonderful way to spread the reading love and have it grow along with the child.

I have a lot of great childhood memories that revolve around books. Going to the library was a huge thing for me as I loved wandering the aisles looking at all the options to borrow and finally finding the perfect book. Of course it wasn’t always perfect, sometimes I felt the disappointment of not finding the book I had wanted to get or only being allowed to get one book when I wanted two. Then of course there was also the books at our house. I had plenty of favorites among the shelves and some of those I read so often that the books were quite worn out, but I continued to love them even in that state, perhaps even more so.

Now that I have my son I get to spread my love of books to him. We have taken a great deal of time and effort to get him a large collection of books that are perfect for him at his current age and reading skill and those that he will grow into. Some of these books are the same ones from when I was a kid and it is great to get to read those with him and watch him fall in love with a story that I read and loved, and still love, all those years ago. Not only are there lots of older books that my son can enjoy now, but there is also a constant stream of new books that are hitting the shelves. These books cover a nice amount of topics, like adjusting to school, making friends, sharing and other important lessons, but they are still written and illustrated in a fun way that appeals to young readers as well as parents.

So what children’s books are must haves? Well this question can be a bit difficult to answer. Much like with other books opinions vary from person to person on what books are important for children to have and which are their favorites. So I will be listing the books that have graced my shelves as well as my sons along with the ones we both really enjoy, go give a nice variety to this.

  • Anything my Robert Munsch
  • Anything by Dr. Seuss
  • The Three Billy Goats Gruff
  • Berenstain Bears Books
  • Barnyard Dance
  • Learning to read books

The next step in reading and books are the Middle Grade books. Now I will admit my knowledge of these books if fairly limited at the moment. It’s been years since I have read books from this category and since my son is not quite at these books we don’t have many floating around the house. These book are important as the next step up in reading as the stories are longer, the words are more difficult and often times these books contain chapters, which helps them transition eventually into the next reading phase books. As far as books and authors in this category I can only think of a few that I myself enjoyed as a child and a few that are newer that have gained a lot of popularity.

  • Marguerite Henry
  • Roald Dahl
  • Shel Silverstein
  • Mary Stanton
  • Mary Norton
  • Rick Riordon

The final category of books I will be talking about today is Young Adult. This genre is fairly new and is growing quite a bit. I love that fact that so many teenagers are encouraged to read because of the large volumes of books being published in this genres that cover all fiction genres to give a wide range of reading material. However, it’s not just teens who enjoy these book, there are plenty of adults who read Young Adult books among other books or exclusively.

I have only been reading Young Adult books for the last two years and much like with main genre fiction there are books I’ve enjoyed, those that were alright and those that I absolutely hated. However I have to admit that even though a number of the books that I read put me off of Young Adult for a while I have a growing love of these books. I may be pickier than normal when selecting a young adult book to read, there are so many out there it’s not always easy.

Some of the Young Adult books/series that I have enjoyed are:

  • Anna Dressed In Blood & Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake
  • Daughter of Smoke & Bone & Days of Blood & Starlight by Laini Taylor
  • Grasping At Eternity & Taking Back Forever by Karen Amanda Hooper
  • The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
  • Touch of Power & Scent of Magic by Maria V. Snyder
  • The Hunger Games, Catching Fire & Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

As you can see the number of books, authors, and topics found in all these books are so wide ranging that no matter whether you have a picky reader, a fast reader, a slow reader, or any other type of reader there is bound to be something that catches their attention.

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