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#106494 06/25/03 08:02 PM
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Starting a new thread. Slightly different emphasis.

Summary request: ADULT book recommendations for a 13 year old.

Context: My oldest daughter recently read her first adult book, The Andromeda Strain. Michael Crichton is now her favorite author. She enjoyed watching the movie with me and her little sister afterward and pointing out differences and similarities. I encouraged her to read Fahrenheit 451, which she didn't enjoy all that much. We look forward to watching this movie, as well.

Now she's reading McAffrey's Dragonrider series which I loved as a college student and which she's loving right now.

The Plan: I'm getting dialup access at home, specifically for the kids to use for school and mess around with during the summer. I have no limits on how much time they watch television or play video games or go on the internet. However, I have set some things for them to do. They have to keep the house straight (not clean up, just don't leave it a bigger wreck than they found it); do some extra extras I give them; and they have to read 4 - 6 books during the summer. Not a lot. I don't want to turn them into slaves, but I do want them spending a little time thinking. The actual number they have to read depends on the difficulty of the books they choose, but in the case of the older kid I she must read adult books or books that at least have an adult level. I'm reckoning to keep them busy between one and two hours each day.

Method: I make recommendations for her. We go to the library and bookstore. She examines what I recommend and decides whether it's something she's interested in. I've recommended a lot, but she's only too thrilled with most (DragonRiders is an exception.)

The Mission: Should you decide to accept it. If you had a son or daughter who was an early teen, what would you recommend to them - or if you could, think back to your own self at that age, and ask "What book do I wish I would have read back then that I would probably have actually enjoyed?"

k

(It occurs to me, post facto, that this is not the appropriate category for this inquiry.)

#106495 06/25/03 09:27 PM
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Keith, I rather think you're asking the impossible. Thirteen-year-olds vary widely in their tastes, level of reading maturity, yadda, yadda.

My only recommendation would be to widen the variety of books that she's exposed to. Give her the gamut. For instance, at thirteen, I would have thought that the Anne of Green Gables type of book would be of interest to her.

But whatever, keep encouraging her to read!


#106496 06/25/03 09:28 PM
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I read Lord of the Rings and Hobbit at that age, and enjoyed them immensely. Pretty much anything by Arthur C Clarke; Mary Stewart's Arthur series - Crystal Cave etc... hmm, I'll think of some more, I'm sure


#106497 06/25/03 09:31 PM
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3 of my 4 kids enjoyed Tokien's The Hobbit and then progressed to The Lord Of The Rings.
As an aside, i personally prefer to read the book prior to watching the movie adaption. My youngest daughter however (14) has left the third part of the Lord Of The Rings trilogy until after she watches the final films release later this year as she "doesn't want to spoil the ending."


#106498 06/25/03 09:32 PM
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I have always been a lazy reader, seldom reading the works one should, but I would recommend Wodehouse and Ngaio Marsh, both of whom I was reading at that age. Wodehouse because he's uncomplicated fun, but still manages to gently lampoon his subjects, and Marsh because her detective novels are primarily a vehicle for conveying her passion for the theatre, and for Shakespeare in particular, and reading them persuaded me that the Bard was worth looking into.


#106499 06/25/03 09:53 PM
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i read Pearl Buck's The Good Earth at that age.. i thought it was the raciest book i had ever read! (after all there was all that stuff about concubines!) with their background, they might find Buck too simple, or just wrong.. but it would be a starting point-- My Antonia and if you can find the Freman's book Mrs Mike its a great read.. a young girl with pluresie, is sent west, to the wilds of yukon for her health.. the relatives back east are uncertain that even the pure air of the west can heal her lungs, but once in the west, she is expected to 'pull her own weight'.. The Light in Forest is another book that stirs my memory.. its set in the mid 1800's, and its about a boy who was 'kidnapped' by indians (that is the western veiw--his perceptions are different) at the age of 7 or so, and is 'recovered' to his original family age 18.

all three books are about cultural perceptions; one is Ms Buck's perceptions of China, the other two are about teen agers who are changing their perception of the world... because all the things they think they know have been changed...

The Chosen is another choice.. its about the small insulular world of orthodox Jews.. from the outside world, these religious jews often look the same to non jews, but from their perpective, small details speak of large differences.. and since these kids are growing up in NY in the 1950/60's..(baseball figures alot in this book, if she like baseball, it will help hook her!--i liked it even though i am not a baseball fan)
Bronx Boy is another great growing up book.. semi autobiographical, it is funny-- set in prewar NY(well the bronx!) its about the adventures about a boy who runs away from home.. only to find, he brings it with him, where ever he goes.

i guess i fit into the truism, that girls will read books about boys, (where as most boys will not read books with girls as main character)


#106500 06/26/03 12:06 AM
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I suddenly remembered I didn't mention Victor Kelleher - he's Aussie, so I don't know how available he is over yonder, but he writes semi-scifi stuff with teenagers as protagonists, usually... he's just fantastic, tackles hard stuff, etc. And very captivating. And, of course, The Princess Bride the book is excellent - better than the movie.


#106501 06/26/03 12:10 AM
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>And, of course, The Princess Bride the book is excellent - better than the movie.

I agree, although the movie was far from shabby.


#106502 06/26/03 04:37 AM
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Jane Austen's novels (except maybe Mansfield Park) -- I was only a couple of years older than that when I first discovered them.

Almost anything by Mary Renault -- The King Must Die, The Last of the Wine, Fire From Heaven, The Persian Boy

Classic SF -- Asimov, Heinlein etc.

If she hasn't read it already, I second (third, fourth, whatever) the motion for Lord of the Rings.



Bingley


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#106503 06/26/03 05:03 AM
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At thirteen I enjoyed reading books and short stories by Jack London: The Call of the Wild, White Fang.

Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn, Tom Sawyer.




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