New: For the Very Young

for the very youngHello, everyone!  Within the next few days, I will be publishing my first book review in a new section called “For the Very Young”.  As you may have noticed, most of the books I have reviewed so far may not be the best selections for very young readers.   For this reason, I have decided to devote a whole section of my website to reviews of books that I have handpicked for the very young, many of which will be books that I read as a child.

Although many advanced young readers can read books written for older readers and understand the vocabulary and basic storyline, the same is not necessarily true for their understanding of each book’s significance.  When I was nine, I made it a mission to read all fifty books on my older sister’s shelf for assigned school reading.  One of these was Amos Fortune, Free Man, the story of a young African prince who was captured by slave traders, brought to America, and sold in Massachusetts. At the time, the story seemed to be moving very slowly, and I put it down before I had even gotten halfway through.  I had understood every word I read, but only as words.  Two years later, I opened the very same book again, and the difference was astounding.  I understood every word, just as before – but this time, I was also able to grasp the complexity of Amos’s emotions as a slave.

The focus of this new section will be on selecting books that are not just “readable”, but also have themes that young readers can understand and appreciate.  If I pick out a book with a more mature theme, I will note that it may require some guidance from the parents and would be great for discussion.  Be sure to keep an eye out for the first post!

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