Books and reading age

Margaret E Parks meparks at mtholyoke.edu
Thu Sep 21 15:34:23 EDT 2000


I really agree.  What immediately came to mind here for me is the new
Tamora Pierce books.  I loved the Alanna books and the Wild Magic
books--I've read the Alanna books so many times that I don't have to read
them anymore, because I know them so well.  But the Protector of the Small
books and the Circle of Magic books just don't enchant and thrill me in
the same way.  I know that girls who read them for the first time now feel
differently, and I think that if I were that age I might love them too.  I
do feel like the books have become progressively less complex, and there
might be some truth in that--the Alanna series was originally written (I
think I read this somewhere) as an adult book or two, and then was
converted to a kids series.  The rest of the books were conceived for
children.  Still, there are some awfully simple children's books that I
still adore--did anybody else ever love M.M. Kaye's The Ordinary
Princess?  I loved that book so much I tried to write a musical of it when
I was in middle school.  I still think it wasn't too bad--for a seventh
grader.  :^)  George and Ira, look out!

On Thu, 21 Sep 2000 lpuszcz at uoft02.utoledo.edu wrote:

> Date: Thu, 21 Sep 2000 15:11:20 -0400 (EDT)
> From: lpuszcz at uoft02.utoledo.edu
> Reply-To: dwj at suberic.net
> To: dwj at suberic.net
> Subject: Books and reading age
> 
> This is something that occurred to me last night, and I was wondering what
> others' opinions would be about this. Let me see if I can explain this
> right.   I was thinking about certain books that I love, that I read when
> I was much younger.  Thos are books that I can reread now and still enjoy
> them--perhaps not for the same reasons, but I still enjoy them.  But
> recently I've picked up some books which are similar in theme, age level,
> etc and I just don't have the same feeling for them.  For example: someone
> on this list mentioned how much they love boarding school stories.  I feel
> the same way about books in which kids solve mysteries.  I've always loved
> them.  There is a series like this by E.W. Hildick, and I read the earlier
> books back when I was 12 or 13.  Recently I reread one of them and
> enjoyed it, so I got some of his later books, puclished recently but still
> part of the same series, and I didn't like those at all.  And I don't
> think the quality of the later books is the problem; it seems to me the
> writing is still good, but my reaction to them is different. Part of it
> may be the nostalgia factor, of course, but do you think (let me see if I
> can ask this right) that for some books there's a certain age that you
> need to read them by, and if you haven't read them by that age (which
> probably differs for everyone) that you'll never have the same feeling
> about the book? Does this question make any sense?  I've been trying to
> figure out why I haven't liked these books and was curious to see what you
> think.
> Laurie  
> 
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