professornana (professornana) wrote,

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What lurks within

This morning I saw a commercial with Serena Williams and other athletes working out. Each had a child urging them to do more, try harder, etc. Of course, the child was the inner child of each athlete, that voice within that keeps them working at their craft. It is highly effective for someone like me who keeps her inner child, tween, and teen pretty near the surface when lost in a book. This morning's selection for my #bookaday was one of the BAD KITTY series books. I am certainly not the intended audience for such books, but I delight in the silly fun, in the comical illustrations and frenetic pacing. It was a nice respite after cleaning out under some cabinets this morning. I got to kick back and let the inner child come out of lurkdom.

This is not to say that I must think as a child as I approach a book for a younger audience. No, I need to do what Donna Norton exhorts in her textbook: I need to read through the eyes of a child, see the possibilities of the book through the eyes of a child. But that does not mean that the adult part of me might not see some other things. I know there are picture books, that like some Disney movies, have content that older readers might "get" that younger ones might miss.

I know that when I read a MG or YA book, I have the same challenge: to read through their eyes. It does not mean that I turn off the adult portion of my brain. I can't. But there is still a part of that inner tween and teen that "gets" it, too. I finished reading MAXI'S SECRETS last week with tears streaming. Ditto so many books. We who love books often tell stories of what happens when we read sad books in a public place and have people show concern for our tears. And the same is true for books that have great good humor. I remember reading an early ARC of a Rob Thomas (the author, not the rocker) novel and looking up to see folks staring at me because I was laughing out loud.

I think those of us who love books for kids can tap that inner child readily, can see through their eyes, can "get" it.
Tags: through the eyes of a child
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