The Best Books for Reluctant Readers
Some kids are voracious readers who devour books all year long. But for others, reading can be a challenge at the best of times. So how do you get them off their electronic devices and get reluctant readers turning pages? Eleanor LeFave, owner of the beloved children's bookstore Mable's Fables, says the key is to just get them to read everything they can.
For Reluctant Early Readers
For younger kids, you can never go wrong with some classic picture books like The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf, Sylvester and the Magic Pebble by William Steig, The Story of Babar by Jean de Brunhoff, The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame, and Beatrix Potter's Peter Rabbit series (The Tailor of Gloucester and The Tale of Two Bad Mice have always been two of our favourites).
Read-Aloud Books for Early Readers
Whether you're on a plane, in the car, tucking in to bedtime, on the dock at the cottage or anywhere at all, engage the kids and increase attention spans by reading books aloud. The read-aloud books that we recommend for the smaller set includes: The Travelling Circus by Marie–Louise Gay, Audrey (Cow) by Dan Bar-el, and
For Reluctant Readers
For kids who can read well but are reluctant to do so, try an activity or quiz book to pique their interest—something that involves interaction with parents, siblings or friends and is a great conversation starter. We love the Lonely Planet's Adventures In Busy Places activities and sticker books, The Quiz Book for BFFs by H. Becker, and the It's All About Us (...Especially Me!) question journal by Karen Phillips. Great for rainy days, activity books get them engaged right away—and they won't realize they're actually reading. Choose a book that teaches a new skill—like magic, juggling, or science tricks, we like Magic Mike's Miraculous Magic Tricks by Mike Lane—and they'll hone more than just their readings skills. Also, we're all for grabbing their interest with a topic we know they already love—like a beloved movie. Exhibit A: the latest instalment of the bestselling, award-winning Star Wars: Jedi Academy series by Jeffrey Brown.
Read-Aloud Books for Reluctant Readers
The read-aloud chapter books that we recommend for kids five and up include: The Magician's Elephant by Kate DiCamillo, the Mr. Gum series by Andy Stanton, The Star of Kazan by Eva Ibbotson, Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library by Chris Grabenstein, and the latest in the Penderwicks series by Jeanne Birdsall, Penderwicks in Spring.
For Reluctant Older Readers
For the bigger set, mythology books are wonderful attention grabbers and keepers. D'Aulaires' Book of Greek Myths is a perfect place to start and a great way to get reading some fantastical adventures, and we also love the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series by Rick Riordan and The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott.
Read-Aloud Books for Older Readers
The read-aloud chapter books that we recommend for bigger kids include: The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick (whose new book The Marvels comes out in September),Glee's Chris Colfer's Land of Stories, and classics like Whittington by Alan Armstrong, A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl, The Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis, and of course Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery.