Friday, December 10, 2010

Share a Story

A few months ago, I used my maternal right to force my eight year-old son to read the first fifty pages of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.

Me: "You'll like it! I promise!"

Son: "I don't want to."

Me: "Trust me, it's great!"

Son: "But...I don't want to!"

Me: "Read the first fifty pages and if you don't like it by then, I'll never make you read another page."

Son: *sees my I-mean-business-face and submits to my "deal"*

By page 10, he was still asking me if he had to do it. By page 25, still complaining. An hour later, I found him on page 75 and completely ignoring my existence.

Sweet!

Right now, he's on the fourth chapter of the Order of the Phoenix. In between, the times we've had discussing Harry's world have been SO MUCH FUN.

So, when was the last time you shared a world and brought a friend or loved one to a book you adored?

69 comments:

Maria Zannini said...

I love this story! Yay for mom and her maternal rights.

Rachna Chhabria said...

I made my mom read a couple of novels I had loved. It was fun discussing the stories and characters with her. Its good that you are inculcating the reading habit in your son.

Jessica Bell said...

hehehe, that is some wonderful pushing you did there! LOL. God, my poor kids are going to hate me. I'll probably try and get them to read To Kill A Mockingbird or something. LOL

Lord Gwydion said...

Earlier this year, I turned two of my buddies onto Fritz Leiber's Lankhmar stories.

I'd finally gotten around to reading them in the past three years or so, and they were so good I had to have some people to talk about them with. It does feel good, doesn't it?

My son's still a bit young, but I've already got a list of books to introduce him to in a couple of years.

Alesa Warcan said...

I've been suggesting to some of my friends who gushed about the first hunger games to read battle Royale.

Good going on the HP push!
I guess the first hit isn't always free after all. ; j

Christine Danek said...

I got my aunt to read the whole Twilight series and now she's hooked on YA. She loves the Hunger Games.
Have a great weekend!

Matthew Rush said...

My daughter actually introduced me to HP, and I've loved it ever since. Funny though, her little sister won't read it, even though she likes the movies. She's a fanatic Percy Jackson fan instead. As long as they're reading I'm good.

B.E. Sanderson said...

OMG, that sounds a lot like my daughter when she was little. Way back when, she hated reading. Then my mother got her the first HP. She didn't want to even try that either, but she got talked into it. After a couple chapters, she was hooked. Now, she reads constantly.

Good job on the maternal nudging, Lydia. =o)

j.m. neeb said...

OMG!! (Note: I never say "OMG"... not in any form. Well, except for the fact I just did, but we'll disregard that. Movin' on...)

For years I had refused to get swept up in Harry Potter Mania. I understood -- and had no doubts -- that the Potter series was well-crafted, but I didn't like all the hoopla involved.

One day at the office, there had been news about one of the newer books coming out and people around me were talking about it with great enthusiasm. I mentioned to a friend -- who happened to have been the ignition for the excitement that morning -- that I had never read the Potter books. She couldn't believe it. I told her that I was sure that they were entertaining reads and whatnot, but all the hype kind of turned me off. (I hope I'm not coming across as a snob, because that is totally not me...)

She told me that she was going to bring in the first one and I had to read at least the first fifty pages! (Thus, the aforementioned "OMG"...)

It was summer and I love being a beach bum -- the beaches along Lake Michigan on the MI side are absolutely incredible in the summer, which unfortunately only lasts about two months here -- so I decided to make it my "beach book" for the time being.

That was a horrible decision. See, I was truly captivated by the book (and easily exceeded the promised fifty pages) and couldn't put it down. The problem with that, the reason it was a horrible decision to make it my beach book, was that I can only read while lying on my stomach. I prop myself up with my elbows and read. If I'm on my back, I can't hold the book above me without my arms getting tired very quickly. (Stupid need for blood.)

So I was getting burned on my back and my stomach remained pasty, all because I couldn't stop reading Harry Potter, which I vowed I would never allow myself to get into. :)

Hopefully you can see that I really, really needed to comment on this!!

j.m. neeb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
DL Hammons said...

My kids have come to learn that their Dad is a bigger kid then all of them combined! So when Dad suggests something he thinks they'll like, there on-board right away!! :)

Kelly said...

I did the SAME THING! I tried at age 8, but he refused (and only wanted to read Pokemon books, God help me). But then at 9, I said this is what we'll be reading before bed. "No!" "Yes" and then each night I'd read a chapter and then after a few nights he'd read two more afterwards and I'd have to catch up on the reading while he was in school (as I hadn't read the books yet either).

Vicki Rocho said...

You go, Mom! I bought the first book from a garage sale or something and put it on daughter's shelf. It sat there for a long time. It wasn't until her friends were on book 4 or 5 that she picked up book one....then it was a race for us. Stealing the book from each other and tearing through the others.

fun fun

The Blogger Formerly Known As said...

Mothers can be so mean, can’t they? Making their offspring enjoy something new :)
The enigmatic, masked blogger

Em said...

My brother finally read The Time Traveler's Wife years after I gave it to him and really enjoyed it.

I need a bookclub or something. Most of my friends don't like reading, although we're all bibliophiles in my immediately family.

Em said...

(Now I'm trying to get people to read Charles deLint's Memory and Dream.)

erinjade said...

this is awesome. i swear, HP is one of the reasons i want to have kids... so i can share this exact same story someday.

recently, i convinced three adults to read YA by handing them Hunger Games. all 3 went on to read the entire series. :)

Carol Kilgore said...

How cool! One of the best parts of growing up is sharing experiences outside the normal mother/child relationship. Have a great weekend :)

Samantha VĂ©rant said...

I did that with my step-kids and the Hunger Games. They are both anxiously waiting the third book now, which is not yet available in France (in French). Ten points. Me.

Lydia Kang said...

j.M neeb, oh your poor sunburned and pasty body. But it was worth the pain, n'est-ce pas?

I love hearing how much we've been able to share our loves. It makes me all happy inside!

BECKY said...

I loved reading all these comments, too! I must admit, I haven't read any Harry Potter books, either. (sorry..don't me mad at me!)I have a couple of reasons. 1) I don't care for fantasy/sci-fi books. 2)I have SO many books I've purchased that I still haven't read, etc!! :)

Melissa Gill said...

Not having anyone to force to read HP is the one and only regret of my childlessness.

I've tried to get my 9 year old niece into it, I've read HP to her before bed and she likes it, she really does, but the time between readings is sooooo long, it's never caught on. (God forbid her mother the 7th grade reading teacher encourage her to read anything, don't get me started.)

Now I'm targeting my 8 year old nephew. He's always been a great reader, but he struggles with context. Still, I'm convinced that if I can get him into HP, he'll be totally hooked. I'm just worried about pushing him too fast. If he gets frustrated, he'll give up and won't go back to it until he's 80.

He's reading Whimpy Kid, and liking it. Is he ready for HP?

Deb Salisbury said...

Yay, mom! Hurray for reading! :-D

aspiring_x said...

my eight-year-old is in the middle of the goblet of fire now! it took me FOREVER to get him to read something other than rick riordan books (who rocks- but he had gotten to the point of rereading the lightning thief four times) it's so much fun to see them fall in love with books isn't it? :)

Mary McDonald said...

My daughter is like your son. She doesn't want to read, but once she starts she really gets into the book. She read "Julie of the Wolves" recently for school, and was so into it, she started sobbing when the leader of the wolf pack was killed.

lbdiamond said...

LOL! Nice parenting! ;)

The Happy Whisk said...

Glad he is enjoying it. Very cool.

WindyA said...

I love this post! The main 2 reasons why? My 5yo says broccoli is one of her favorite foods and our 2yo likes it a whole lot too. It doesn't even have to be covered in cheese, they just like it. (I have freakazoid kidlets, apparently.)

And secondly, you had to convince your son to read HP & SS, and my kidlets asked for it as bedtime story book, even though it has no pictures and it took us almost 6 months to even GET to Hogwarts. We're still working through book 1 right now (slow going when you only read 5-6 pages a night), but they haven't lost interest!

It just shows that kids are so so different and sometimes all it takes IS those first 50 pages! Glad he's liking it!

Meredith said...

Aw, that's so cute! Love that you get to share that world with your son. I made all my friends read it, and now they're hooked :)

Olga said...

I am laughing about this post. Everything in it is so familiar. Thank goodness my daughter is already in university. But it brings back some old memories.

Old Kitty said...

Mum Rules!!!

Well done you!!!!

A work colleague kept telling me how Terry Pratchett was brilliant and I kept ignoring this until she lent me her dog-eared copy of Mort and told me to take my time with it. I didn't touch it for two months - thought I'd rumour her - thought I'd skim through and then return it then pretend I liked it. A few years later and I've got all his books and can't wait for the next one!!

Sometimes tough love works!!!

It's so great when this happens!!

Take care
x

Heather said...

That story is beyond awesome! I love it! I've bought my sister books for the holidays since she was tiny. Now she's hooked and can't get enough!

The Red Angel said...

Haha, this is awesome Lydia! You go, Super Mom. :P Hmm, let's see...I forced my boyfriend to read Twilight even though he didn't want to, and he ended up reading the whole series. xD

~TRA

http://xtheredangelx.blogspot.com

Jonene Ficklin said...

Now that a good mom! Way to go! It's the most wonderful feeling when your children finally love reading. And it has everything to do with finding 'THE' book for them. Of course, you can't go wrong with Harry Potter. One of my kids struggles with reading, and we kept trying new books on him. It was a huge paycheck moment when I caught him reading 'Fablehaven' on his own, and he was still up reading at midnight!

Carol Riggs said...

Haha, I've never heard of a Mom MAKING her son read HP! Hilarious. So glad he decided he liked it. HP as "broccoli." Gotta love it.

Lisa Gail Green said...

Oh i LOVE it!! Yeah you! I need to light a fire under my daughter when it comes to reading. She starts things and never finishes. Though we kind of cheated on HP and listened to it. She's on book 3 now. He he he.

Terri Tiffany said...

I think it is great that he did it and kept going!! You've opened his world:)

The Golden Eagle said...

My mom insisted I read the AG Kaya novels--I didn't want to finish them at first, but I loved them when I was done. :)

Bathwater said...

My son Max introduced me to the Percy Jackson series I've read everyone with him. They are pretty good.

Kathi Oram Peterson said...

The Harry Potter books have helped open the world of novels to many children.

Glad you son found he loves to read!!!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Way to go, Mom!!

Liza said...

Love this story. My husband and I bought the first HP for our daughter, and started reading it out loud. She and I didn't get it...so he read it cover to cover. A few months later we tried again...bingo. We are ALL now addicted...and both my daughter and my husband seem to know every trivia question ever asked about Harry.

Nas Dean said...

I've just given my daughter the whole set of HP and she went out and got the whole set of DVDs. Now she reads one book then watches its corresponding movie.

Elana Johnson said...

Great list. My son is 12 and reads all kinds of things (Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson, Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld) and has yet to read a Harry Potter novel. So sad.

Colene Murphy said...

That is soooo awesome!! I dream of a day when I can make my own future children read Harry. I'm so excited for that! It's ridiculous.

So glad he is liking them! You're a good mom. ;)

Jai Joshi said...

JKRowling is a Goddess!

Jai

Krispy said...

Aww, that's awesome! Glad he got into it. The first book is a little slow to start. I liked it, but my sister has confessed she put it down the first time she started Harry Potter, only to pick it up again later.

Speaking of her, I got her into a few books this year, though she doesn't like to read much. I told her to read the Hunger Games (even though I hadn't yet, but I knew everyone was raving about it), and I persuaded her into reading Percy Jackson. I wish she would get into more stuff though because her commentary makes series infinitely more awesome (i.e. hilarious).

Pk Hrezo said...

Oh, it's all over now! HP fanatic at age 8. Good for him for tackling the series... I love to hear that!

Emily said...

I insisted that my sister needed to read Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marrillier. Before that she wasn't much of a reader. After, she started reading anything she could get her hands on.

Munk Davis said...

I read to my kids every night. William Steig, Roald Dahl, Wilson Rawls, Gary Paulson, Phillip Pullman, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Cornelia Funke, Munk Davis, CS Lewis, JK Rowling, Beverly Cleary, EB White, Eoin Colfer...
I enjoy the reading as much as they do the listening. Books are to be shared.

Munk Davis said...

I read to my kids every night. William Steig, Roald Dahl, Wilson Rawls, Gary Paulson, Phillip Pullman, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Cornelia Funke, Munk Davis, CS Lewis, JK Rowling, Beverly Cleary, EB White, Eoin Colfer...
I enjoy the reading as much as they do the listening. Books are to be shared.

Shannon said...

Great post! Love it!

One of my favorite things as a young adult was reading books at the same time as my sister. We try to do it now, but our schedules make it difficult.

Glad to hear that you and your son are bonding over HP. Love that series!

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L'Aussie said...

It's totally awesome that you got your son to read HP. That's the book that will do it! Looks like he's powering on without any nudging from you. I love recommending books to family/friends/students.:)

L'Aussie said...

It's totally awesome that you got your son to read HP. That's the book that will do it! Looks like he's powering on without any nudging from you. I love recommending books to family/friends/students.:)

Ellie said...

An awesome story! I love that you persisted, because you knew he would enjoy the book.

Lynn said...

Sweet story! My daughter's and I and my sisters share books a lot. I love that we share the love of reading.

The Words Crafter said...

That's funny! Let's see...I started a cult at work-I introduced everyone to Twilight (hanging head in shame) and also introduced them to Neil Gaiman (I love Neverwhere).

ciaraknight said...

So glad you introduced your son to such a fantastic world. My six year old is obsessed after I read the first book to him and he saw the movie.

SAMUEL PARK said...

This is such a wonderful story, and I'm glad you convinced him to read the book. He'll get hooked on more and more stories, and transfer that habit onto more and more challenging work and schoolwork. I remember being a big reader of comic books as a kid, and that certainly helped me transition into literature and textbooks later on.

Valerie Geary said...

Love this story! :) And proof that if you apply the 50 page rule to reading, most of the time you'll get sucked right in!

Abby Minard said...

Yay for your son reading HP! I REALLY hope my daughter will read it some day. She's only 5. I will start reading them to her when she gets a little older I think. My mom used to read Mark Twain books to me and I LOVED it.

alexia said...

That's awesome! I have misplaced my copy of the first HP, otherwise I would have made my son read it before now... but he has come up with his own favorites and actually gotten me to like them! Like Artemis Fowl and the How to Train Your Dragon series... me and one of my sisters always trade new books we've read with each other, and we usually like them. I love sharing reading!

Julie Musil said...

That's funny! I'm so glad he's enjoying the series.

I keep telling my son he'd enjoy Hunger Games, but so far, not much interest. With his Lang. Arts class at school, they're forced to read classics and he doesn't like it at all. I'm sad that this year, reading has become a drudgery for him.

Susan Fields said...

I've been passing my set of Hunger Games books around to any and all takers. It's so fun to have new people to discuss it with!

Patricia Stoltey said...

Turning kids on to reading is a wonderful thing to do. I have grand-nieces and nephews who only receive books from me, and they've even made it a tradition to open my package as soon as it arrives...of course, I'm not 100% sure if it's the books or the goodies I include, but I'll pretend it's the books. :)

Life Ramblings said...

glad your son is enjoying the HP series. Happy reading. hope your week is off to a great start. cheers.:)

ed pilolla said...

it's been a long, long time. i don't have the confidence to know when someone will like something the way you did to your son.
years ago i gave my dad a steven king book to read, and he scoffed, but he ended up reading it and enjoying it. it was the stand. my dad liked king's anti-establishment view of the american power structure.
yeah, it was cool to see my dad read a 1,300 page book he couldn't imagine enjoying at the outset.

horsegirlmoore said...

On the topic of blogs and love. I love to blog. My little sis sometimes laughs at how moved I am by books. I never knew if she read any of my posts. My most recent post said "This book makes me want to hug all my best friends." A few minutes after posting it she came to my room and gave me a hug. She said "I need to hug MY best friend." She reads every post. She cares because I do. I love my darling Bella to death. Just thought you might like this story.

 
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