― George R.R. Martin, A Dance with Dragons
What a week! It is difficult to believe that less than two months ago Arthur and I discussed the possibility of moving, and today we sit in our temporary home, most of our things in storage and talking about our new house to come. I guess life, like books, needs a bit of excitement to make it perfect.
Actually, excitement is all around us this time of year. School is starting in many areas of the country, and malls are filled with back to school shoppers. How sad that we can no longer find a bookstore in our malls. I used to love browsing through the various mall bookstores (usually two to a mall) during those school shopping trips. I would bribe my kids (both readers) with a book if they behaved while shopping for their school wardrobes. Alas, times have changed, and kids are so busy looking at their iPhones, iPads, and various electronics while walking the mall, that they wouldn't notice a bookstore unless it advertised free apps.
It is not that these electronic devices don't have their place. I have, and love, one of each. It is just that they often take the place of human (face to face) interaction. We used to love getting dressed up and going out to dinner with Mike and Beth. We would talk about each of our days, our favorite T.V. shows and the books we were reading. I would find out so much about my children during those relaxed outings. Now I see each child (literally from a year old through teen years) holding a device and watching movies, texting, reading email, and barely looking up from the device long enough to order their meals. Unfortunately, in many cases, this means no time for reading unless it is assigned by the teacher.
As a teacher, I can guarantee parents that a child that only reads "assigned" books will never develop the love of reading that those who read my blog have. That love comes from our childhood exploration of books we read for the pure joy of reading. Children need to read a book without answering study questions and being tested on the author's meaning. Children who say that they don't like to read have just not found the right books yet. As adults, we need to take away the electronics for a bit of time each day and talk to our children. We can guide them towards that perfect book that will capture their imaginations and make books a joy to them. In today's tough world, our children need all the joy they can get.
Unfortunately, my insane moving schedule left little time for reading this week. I am sorry to say that I can add no new reviews until next week but am happy to add two guest reviews if you check out that page. Hopefully, I will be back in action next week and relaxing with a good book is the perfect way to start.