Recommending books

Melissa Proffitt Melissa at
Wed Jun 19 18:35:13 EDT 2002

I *actually* went to the library yesterday.  Then it turned out, this
morning, that the video art lesson my daughter wanted was nonfunctional.
Back we went to the library--at first just me and the older girls, but
eventually all four children, because, honestly, I like taking them places.
(Most of the time.)

Then the library trip got REALLY long.  I ran into an older woman from my
church with a young man in his early teens who turned out to be her visiting
grandson.  My keen spider-sense detected that they were in search of the
Narnia books and that these did not suffice.  Later I found them looking at
the Harry Potter display and made a friendly inquiry, though I'd already
figured it out.  Yes, this was a boy who had devoured the Harry Potter books
multiple times and was looking for something new.

I'm sure everyone here can figure out what I asked next.  :)

After introducing him to DWJ--and he looked very interested, too--I hit a
mental block.  I simply couldn't think of much else to give him!  And it's
not like I haven't read all the appropriate stuff...I just got stuck.  I
ended up going around the YA shelf--

--brief aside: we have only ONE shelf in the YA section, front and back, and
I weep for the children--

--and picked out a few more.  They were very grateful and told me, as I was
afraid they would, that the reference desk librarian hadn't known to
recommend anything other than the Narnia books.  Not that those are bad
books, but they're certainly not the only ones in the world for fantasy
fans.  This was not news to me because I've seen it before at our library;
our librarians are very helpful, but they are not even a little bit informed
about science fiction and fantasy--for any age group.  Last fall they
produced a bookmark-sized list of quick picks for teens who liked F&SF, but
it's not around any more (and it wasn't very good in the first place).

Anyway.  I'm tired of my mind going blank like that.  I remember that once
upon a time, we had a discussion on what to recommend to a kid who likes
Harry Potter (or Prydain or Narnia), but I don't know where that list is.
So if someone knows anything that would help me find it in the archives, I'd
be grateful.

Alternatively, if you want to start a new list, I'd like that too.  I intend
to type the whole thing up and format it so that I can either pass it out to
people as needed or give out recommendations on the fly.

Melissa Proffitt

(It was a good thing I went back today.  I got _The Unknown Ajax_, which is
only available on audiocassette, and I'm going to listen to it while I work
on my various household and creative projects.  Not the writing one, of
course.  Not being as strong-minded as Dorian, I am powerfully influenced by
the writing styles of my current obsessions.  Granted, the book is sort of
Regency era, but I think it would be a Bad Idea to be listening to Georgette
Heyer's words while trying to compose my own.)
To unsubscribe, email dwj-request at with the body "unsubscribe".
Visit the archives at

More information about the Dwj mailing list