Saturday, April 12, 2008

D.E.A.R. Follow Up

I hope everyone is having a good Drop-Everything-And-Read Day. Back at the end of February, I posted about D.E.A.R. and invited everyone to participate in a challenge of their choosing. If you'd like to report back on how you're doing, or should that be how you've done...this is the post to do it!

D.E.A.R. is an important day because it's a day of recognizing what every day should be like. A day that says that reading is an important part of life. "National D.E.A.R. Day is a special reading celebration to remind and encourage families to make reading together on a daily basis a family priority." Reading. Families. Togetherness. Books. It really doesn't get any better than this. (The following list is I believe from Jim Trelease. I'm 85% sure that's the book I got it from. But I checked out a few at a time. And I'm not completely completely sure.)

Reasons to Read Aloud to Your Child

  • Conditions the child to associate reading with pleasure, an association that is necessary in order to maintain reading as a lifelong activity
  • Contributes to background knowledge for all other subject areas, including science, history, geography, math, and social studies
  • Provides the child with a reading role model
  • Creates empathy toward other people, because literature values humanity and celebrates the human spirit and potential, offering insight into different lifestyles while recognizing universality
  • Increases a child's vocabulary and grammar, and has the potential to improve writing skills
  • Improves a child's probability of staying in school
  • Improves future probability of employment and higher quality of life
  • Increase life span by virtue of correlated education, employment, and higher quality of life
  • Lowers probability of imprisonment
  • Improves problem-solving and critical-thinking skills that are fundamental and transferable to all other areas of learning
  • Offers information
  • Offers laughter and entertainment and an alternative to television
  • Improves attention span
  • Stimulates the imagination
  • Nurtures emotional development and improves self esteem
  • Reading skills are accrued skills that are bound to improve over time..a countdown to academic success
Here are some books that YOU might find helpful

How To Get Your Child to Love Reading by Esme Raji Codell
The Read-Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease
Reading Magic: Why Reading Aloud to Our Children Will Change Their Lives Forever by Mem Fox

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
3) I am not promising anyone (author or publisher) a positive review in exchange for a review copy. That's not how I work.
4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
5) I do not guarantee that I will get to your book immediately. I've got so many books I'm trying to read and review, I can't promise to get to any one book in a given time frame.
6) Emailing me every other week to see if I've read your book won't help me get to it any faster. Though if you want to email me to check and see if it arrived safely, then that's fine!

Authors, publishers. I am interested in interviewing authors and participating in blog tours. (All I ask is that I receive a review copy of the author's latest book beforehand so the interview will be productive. If the book is part of a series, I'd like to review the whole series.) Contact me if you're interested.

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