I was raised as a reader in a family of readers. Trips to the library were common when I was a kid. And even as an alienated and rebelling teen, I frequently spent time in the library trying to find books that would offend my parents and prove what a dangerous kid I was. But I stopped reading fun fiction for the most part when I went to college. Who had time for pleasure reading when you had thousands of pages to read for your classes?
My re-introduction to reading for the fun of it came when I started flying in planes for work. Long hours in a tin can hurtling around the country gave me time to burn and my upbringing brought me back to books. I tried adult fiction but it bored me. I tried non-fiction, but it reminded me too much of college and reading for exams. My (now ex-)wife suggested a fantasy book she had enjoyed as a kid. I took it and was totally engrossed and I expanded out from there. That was 2001 and I hadn’t picked up a book targeted for children in twenty years.
I started taking kidlit with me on the plane. It raised eyebrows occasionally but I enjoyed it and it helped me pass the time. It was only after a few years, in 2005, that I decided to start documenting what I was reading when a friend suggested creating a blog. Blogging was a different experience because now I was sharing my interest with a larger world. Many people blog for money and for the work they put into their reviews, they probably deserve to get paid. I’ve never had such ambitions. I read for fun and my “reviews” are mostly just notes about the book. My comments are amateurish and my tastes notably pedestrian.
As a rule, I rarely agree with the consensus about a particular book (my favorite books tend to be all over the place, while I rarely have much good to say about Newbery and Printz winners). I have little patience for the types of politically correct books that librarians adore and even less for the formulaic romances that are commercial successes. I’ve never read a single book in the Twilight series or a Harry Potter book. If all I did was write nice things about popular (or critically-acclaimed) books, what would be the point in reading this blog?