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View Full Version : What should our next read aloud be?



AddlepatedMonkeyMama
11-25-2013, 04:38 PM
Because I can't decide and putting it to a vote is no good--I have an even number of kids and they never choose the same thing. ;)

Avalon
11-25-2013, 07:11 PM
We all hated Harriet the Spy. I mean hated. We didn't even finish it. We pushed hard to get about 3/4 of the way through and decided that we didn't care what happened to her. She was intensely unlikable.

I've never heard of Summerland, and Bedknobs and Broomsticks is kind of a classic, so I voted for that one.

JinxieFox
11-25-2013, 08:30 PM
Hm, read two simultaneously? One in the mornings and one at night? I was torn between Harriet and Bedknobs, so I went with Harriet, because I'm lazy.

BakedAk
11-25-2013, 08:46 PM
Mary Norton wrote The Borrowers, didn't she? I didn't know she did BK&BS, too. I'll have to get that one out. Girl didn't like Harriet. She loves everything, from Geronimo Stilton and the Disney fairies to Shakespeare and Mark Twain, so a lukewarm response to a book from her is unheard of.

farrarwilliams
11-26-2013, 12:07 AM
I love Bed Knob and Broomstick, but I went with Harriet. She's so... appropriately angsty. But maybe Bed Knob and Broomstick will be ours...

I have a serious infatuation with Michael Chabon. But I did not care for Summerland. At all. It ranks among the most disappointing books I've ever read.

AddlepatedMonkeyMama
11-26-2013, 08:35 AM
I love Bed Knob and Broomstick, but I went with Harriet. She's so... appropriately angsty. But maybe Bed Knob and Broomstick will be ours...

I have a serious infatuation with Michael Chabon. But I did not care for Summerland. At all. It ranks among the most disappointing books I've ever read.

My son started Harriet by himself but petered out. I didn't love Summerland either, but it ties into their growing interest in baseball (thank you, Red Sox!). And Michael Chabon can write circles around most children's authors. :)

jsaffold
11-26-2013, 09:05 AM
I haven't read either with my kids yet..
BUT I did read harriet and bedknobs as a kid and liked bedknobs best by far... not sure I even finished Harriet..didnt hate it, but I think I lost interest.. This was me reading them myself as a kid BTW not them being read to me.. that can change the whole dynamic of the book sometimes.


never read summerland....from the comments here I can see not to bother... we have SOOOOO many books, the last thing I need is more in this house (who am I kidding...I'm a book junkie like no other)

farrarwilliams
11-26-2013, 09:09 AM
Actually, I think Chabon's problem was trying to write circles around children's book writers. He ended up not writing a book for children or adults.

Harriet slows in the middle, then picks up. And it's a good one for discussion. My boys really enjoyed it. I think we will do Bed Knob and Broomstick next here though... after we do one more historical fiction...

AddlepatedMonkeyMama
11-26-2013, 12:36 PM
Actually, I think Chabon's problem was trying to write circles around children's book writers. He ended up not writing a book for children or adults.

I think he did tone down the verbal gymnastics a bit for Summerland. He seemed focused on putting in as much fantastical stuff as possible. I feel like the storyline and characters always get short shrift when authors do that (Wildwood... The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland... etc.).

I just realized that Harriet the Spy is due back to the library today, so I think it's going to be Bed-knob and Broomstick.

Thanks for the input, everyone!

BakedAk
11-26-2013, 12:40 PM
Ah! Decision by due-date! We have those lots of times. :)

farrarwilliams
11-26-2013, 03:35 PM
I think he did tone down the verbal gymnastics a bit for Summerland. He seemed focused on putting in as much fantastical stuff as possible. I feel like the storyline and characters always get short shrift when authors do that (Wildwood... The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland... etc.).

I just realized that Harriet the Spy is due back to the library today, so I think it's going to be Bed-knob and Broomstick.

Thanks for the input, everyone!

Interesting. Yeah, I think that was the case with Summerland. Wildwood was similar to me. In fact, I had the same experience reading them - I was also crazy excited to read Wildwood and then crazy disappointed by the middle and only skimmed to the end to see how it came out and decide if I ever was going to end up caring. And I didn't. The characters were secondary to the story, but not in a good way. I didn't find that problem in The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland though. In that book, the big themes and the tone and so forth all worked for me. I did feel like the characters were strong enough. Or, mostly, character singular.

Have fun with your World War II era witch adventure. ;)

AddlepatedMonkeyMama
11-26-2013, 04:08 PM
Yes, I loved the premise of Wildwood--the magical world just across the river (and the illustrations and cover art were so appealing!). I think I made it about 2/3 of the way and lost steam. I didn't make it that far into The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland. It seemed like all they did was talk, talk, talk in a Phantom Tollbooth kind of wordplay, but nothing much was happening. Maybe I should have stuck it out longer.

Gah, I just went to the library to return Harriet the Spy and picked up the Wolves of Willoughby Chase and Surviving the Applewhites. I think I need an intervention.

Avalon
11-26-2013, 07:11 PM
Gah, I just went to the library to return Harriet the Spy and picked up the Wolves of Willoughby Chase and Surviving the Applewhites. I think I need an intervention.

Wolves of Willoughby Chase is terrific.

farrarwilliams
11-26-2013, 08:01 PM
Wolves of Willoughby Chase is soooooo good. Everything by Joan Aiken is so good.