“I want to stay until I finish the book,” my daughter pressed, “I’ve only got 30 more pages.” My heart beamed at that moment. The feeling of not being able to put a book down had escaped my daughter in her teen years. Assignments, readings for school, social media, and Netflix all compete for her time.
In spite of her lack of pleasure reading, I have continued to buy her books for every occasion: Christmas, birthdays, trips, just because. But, they have sat on her shelf waiting to be picked up or started and set to the side when something more pressing came up.
This past summer we took a day trip to a neighboring town for lunch, shopping, and a stop at a sunflower field. While there, we visited a small bookshop called Wild Geese Bookshop. When Gretchen found two books she was interested in, of course we bought them. I have never been able to say no to any book purchase. It was one of these books that she could not put down this week. Choice. It is so important in the life of a reader. No matter how many books I gifted her that I thought she would like, her personal interest is what was important. I would never have chosen this book for her.
Now she is at that point, “What will I read next?” “I don’t have another book with me.” She is hooked again. Her university has suspended all in person classes for the semester. She has another week before her online classes start up. Just enough time without assignments to get drawn into another book, or two, or three.