Dinotopia

I’m a reader. Well, at least I was until baby #4 kind of shook up my world a little bit. In the 6 months since she was born I’ve struggled with a lot of stuff and resolved most of it…except for the reading thing. Saying this is disconcerting is an understatement. I mean, being a reader, saying I love to read (and really meaning it) is one of the things I’ve used to define myself for as long as I can remember. But now I just can’t get into any books…even books that for all intents and purposes are a perfect fit for me. My time is limited of course but even when I do sit down to read, it feels more like fulfilling an obligation than enjoying a beloved pastime. Oh well. I honestly don’t know what’s wrong and don’t know how to fix it. I’m hoping that with time and maybe life calming down (ha!), I’ll fall in love with reading again.

In the mean time my Little Man is picking up my slack with a vengeance. I can’t even begin to keep up, but he made me a list on my white board of books he really wanted me to read…The Dinotopia series.  How do you say “I don’t feel like it” to that? You don’t. By the way, thrift shops are a bookoholics heaven/dealer. I found some of these books on a thrifting excursion and smiled at the memories they brought up. When I was a kid we lived down the street from the most beautiful library and I would go hang out there and read and then come home with a small mountain of fantasy young adult novels. And for the record the young adult genre when I was a teenager was less angst filled and way more fun that what fills the shelves now…sigh. Anyways.

The Dinotopia books are awesome and I really have enjoyed reading the ones I never read and revisiting the ones I had. More than anything I’m reading because my baby asked me too and it is a happy coincidence that the books are fun and easy and have nice, happy, resolved endings. Also dinosaurs in all their scaly glory feature prominently, so it’s a winning combination. The original book was more of a travel journal (and when I have tons of money to spend on rare books, I want a first edition signed copy of that book to casually leave on a coffee table). The books I’ve bought for the boy are written by several different authors and take place in that same world. They are geared towards kids and really are a nice balance of excitement, values, and decent writing. And dinosaurs. Did I mention the dinosaurs?

My plan is to finish these books, and move on to previewing books for Garyn. I’m kind of a mean mom and am very picky about what he reads, but as he gets older and outgrows the kids classics I’m familiar with I need to know what books to hand him. First on the list is the first book from The Beyonders, then the first book in the Percy Jackson series followed by Fablehaven, Inkheart, and Eragon. I’ve already got books I’m very familiar with that I’m just waiting for him to mature a little bit first, like Harry Potter, Enders Game, and most of Garth Nix’s books. I’m reading my munchkins The Never Ending Story (so much better than the movies! read this book now!) and next is The Swiss Family Robinson. I’m super grateful for a good friend with fabulous taste in books (she is a mean mom too) and a library I envy who will keep me supplied when I get through these…She also is a fellow gardener so kind of my favorite on many levels.

I laugh at myself thinking back a few years ago when I was going to read The Odyssey (still on page 10) and a few new Shakespeare plays, and a whole list of equally daunting titles. It’s ok. I’m working on giving myself permission to let go of expectations that don’t serve me. But here’s to start to find my way back to reading with small baby steps and lots and lots of Fantasy.

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