Are your kids reading this summer?

By Mir
June 6, 2013
Category Books

In the midst of math-mania (we are now on either Day 3 or Day 4 of the Summer Math Torture, depending on whether or not you count the day Chickadee was locked out of the system, and I am thinking about chewing off my own leg to escape, but Chickie seems to be holding up pretty well), we are still trying to hold to our general philosophy of summer being the perfect time to devour all of the books you didn’t have time to read during the school year. (This is partially to counteract Monkey’s philosophy that summer is the perfect time to buy yourself a Zelda game for the Wii and play it for five hours straight before your mother notices you’re still in your pajamas mid-afternoon and glued to the television. Whoops.)

Anyway. What were we talking about? Oh, right! Books! I wrote a piece for Alpha Mom about the books my teens recommend for summer reading, and if you have similarly-inclined kids you may find their picks interesting. Or maybe you have some recommendation to add, which would be cool, too.


  1. jenn

    Was struck by what similar taste you and I had in books at that age (I still re-read the Madeline L’engle Series every few years too – cry EVERY time) and by what similar taste our daughters have :) Great minds think alike I guess!

  2. Liz

    I love to read. My mom used to joke that I always had my face in a book as a teen, and that has never changed. As a teen I liked Cynthia Voight’s books about the Tillerman family, especially Homecoming and Dicey’s Song. I also loved Katherine Paterson- especially The Great Gilly Hopkins and Bridge to Terabithia (I confess, I still own and re-read these, and they still make me cry). Jacob Have I Loved is good too and a bit “older” than Gilly and Terabithia. Wally Lamb is also a favorite- She’s Come Undone is a very good summer read.

    • Mara

      I love Dicey’s Song, and Homecoming! Whenever I mention them, I feel like nobody’s ever heard of them. Glad to know I’m not alone.

  3. Mary K. in Rockport

    The Lauren Oliver dystopia trilogy, Delirium, Pandemonium, and Requiem, plus her first book, Before I Fall. I liked them better than the Katniss Everdeen set. That last one, Before I Fall, is upsettingly today’s high school scene.

  4. Bob

    You might try the Terry Pratchett young adult series about Tiffany Aching: The Wee Free Men, A Hat Full of Sky, Wintersmith, and I Shall Wear Midnight. Actually, I think both of your kids might like them.

    • Stephanie

      A hearty librarian second for this series. In fact, if you can get them to read this aloud to/with you (Scottish accented Pict-sies!) much hilarity may ensue. Camping trip coming up?

      • Kimberly

        Yes, I picked out the audio book of the Wee Free Men for a road trip, but we ended up listening to Ender’s Game instead.

        So I listened to the Wee Free Men and sequels myself on my way to and from work, giggling madly. Definitely good audio book material.

  5. Little Bird

    Most of the work by Paula Volsky is good, even I’d her vocabulary is a trifle overly flowery (but hey, it’s better than overly simplistic!).
    I started the Robert Jordan Wheel of Time series as a teen.
    I dunno though, I was a weird kid, I read Dune at age twelve.
    Oh! Anything by Melanie Rawn would be good! Romance! Danger! And in at least one of her series, DRAGONS!
    Yeah, I like sci-fi/fantasy. Vampires too. But real vampires don’t sparkle.

  6. aem2

    I second Terry Pratchett. I think his Discworld series is fine for a 13-year-old, because that’s when I introduced it to my nephew (thinking I’d be set for Christmas gifts for YEARS and then he went and devoured pretty much the entire series within a year.) Neil Gaiman is also good. Lois Lowry had some good creepy books.

    And on a completely different note, but related to yesterday’s post: SMBC has a comic today on why it’s important for princesses to know math (and also physics):

  7. Katie in MA

    Chickie has excellent book taste – I’ve read all three recently and loved them all! I also loved David Levithan’s Every Day (he’s the guy who co-authored Will Grayson, Will Grayson, which narrowly beats out TFioS as my favorite John Green).

  8. Lily

    I heartily recommend Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger, especially for Chickadee, but maybe for all of you. Also: Laini Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone and the sequel Days of Blood and Starlight. Anything by Libba Bray is great and I also really loved Kerstin Gier’s books about time travelers: Ruby Red and Sapphire Blue.

  9. Flesher

    When She Woke by Hillary Jordan (A Scarlet Letter mashup)
    Beautiful Music for Ugly Children (About a transdude who loves music and radio)
    I have to agree with Every day by David Levithan (So many “what ifs” here)
    And then there is Fault in Our Stars by John Green (A happy living-with-cancer book that will have you laughing and crying)
    I like Ashfall by Mike Mullin which is set in the future and realistic enough to make you really contemplate life.
    Oldy but goody A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith (I can remember asking my mom to read this and she had read it when she was a teen)

    Of course I loved some of the other suggestions from above and often my favorite book is the one I have not yet read.

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