Just saw a new list of books for reluctant readers, by one of the otherwise respected literacy organizations of America. I have to say, it's got me upset.
They should really call it "More Books that Adults Think Kids Should Read, with No Concern for What Kids Really Care About and No Understanding of Why There Are Reluctant Readers in the First Place."
Okay, maybe that was a little harsh. I know the intention was good, but there's an inherent problem with consensus lists of any kind. When it comes to books for reluctant readers, the problem is magnified.
You see, when you ask ten, or a hundred, or a thousand people who LOVE books to create a list for people who DON'T love books, you get increasingly further away from the goal. You get a list, my friends, of reading-lovers' favorite books for people who love reading.
I'd much rather see 100 individual lists than one; so would reluctant readers and their parents and teachers. Then they could find that one reader whose sensibilities are similar to their own and go crazy from that list. That's where my hope for my lists lies...in reaching those individuals with whom I share the same sensibilities...
We're looking to help each other as Individuals, folks. Keep that in mind.