1 Comment

Cliff Hangers and Letting Go

Last night I cuddled up with my 7-year-old and read a few chapters from the Deltora Shadowlands series by Emily Rodda. It’s our habit to read three chapters a night. With Rodda’s books, storytime usually ends with a cliffhanger and a whining plea for more (which I never give in to unless I’m dying to know what happens next). Last night my son pleaded, “But I can’t survive without hearing the next chapter!” Wow. That’s some compliment to Emily Rodda.

My 14-year-old son adored her books in his younger days, too. While I’m reading them to his brother, I sometimes catch him hovering nearby. In part, he’s nostalgiac, but in part he’s still genuinely interested in the tales. He no longer reads much fantasy (it’s not my preferred genre either), but it’s hard to close the cover on a likeable hero facing a hideous beast with near-impossible odds of surviving, especially when a kingdom’s fate rests on the outcome.

I love rediscovering favourite or forgotten children’s books that I once read with my oldest son. I’m lucky to have the pleasure of reading them all over again, seven years later. Sure, I could read them anytime, but reading out loud to your child is a whole different experience than reading on your own. Many books I’d never consider reading for my own pleasure are great with kids who love them.

The first time I read Captain Underpants (to my younger son), we read the whole novel in one evening, giggling in bed. When I closed the cover, he smiled and said, “That was awesome,” with a faraway look in his eyes, like he’d just experienced something amazing. And he had–he’d never thought a book could be like that.

My oldest son missed that series. But he did catch Harry Potter, Cirque du Freak, and a zillion other books I might never have read if it weren’t for storytime with him. Even now, we’ll sometimes read the same book (Feed, Probably Still Nick Swanson, America), although we don’t read it out loud together.

Recently my younger son has lost interest in picture books. He’s happy to have one in the afternoon, but at bedtime he wants a novel. And not an early reader, which he likes to read on his own. That means I don’t get to read Frog and Toad out loud to anyone anymore. But I get to hear them read aloud to me, and that’s a welcome sound.

Everything changes, so they say. No use clinging to the past, or hurrying the future. I miss reading picture books at storytime. And I miss reading to my oldest son. But I can’t complain. Because tonight I get to read three more chapters of Deltora to a captive audience. (Or maybe four, if he can’t survive without knowing how it ends.)


One comment on “Cliff Hangers and Letting Go

  1. Catherine:

    You are an awesome and very talented person and I can clearly see it in your writing. You make reading flavorful and I anxiously await the reading of your present book and the many others that are just waiting to be expressed on paper.

    All the best


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Little Fears

Tales of whimsy, humor and courgettes

wuthering bites

Writing practice


The Fantastic and Mundane Chronicles of an Aspiring Writer


A blog about illustration, illustrators, techniques, style and news.

I am Buddy

It's a dogs life

Roxie Munro

Children's books, kid's apps...

The Wilden Marsh Blog

A blog about Wilden Marsh. Nature Reserve and Site of Special Scientific Interest


Original Musical Stories by "Golnaran", "The musical cube maker"

Jan L. Coates - "What if...?"

life as a kids' writer


Children's Book Reviews

Gotta Find a Home

Conversations with Street People


This blog is about encouraging reading throughout the school years. By watching book trailers it is hoped that you will be inspired to read the book.

(Lost in) Believing in Books

A Young Adult & New Adult Book Blog

The Sweet Sixteens

2016 Young Adult and Middle Grade Debut Authors

Young Adult Book Madness

YA & NA Book Reviews

YA Book Reviews

Reviews for Young Adults or just Adults.

2015 YA & MG Debut Authors

Leaping to your bookshelves in 2015!

Mindy Hardwick's Blog

Author Mindy Hardwick Muses about Writing

YA Crush

Pass a note to your favorite YA book


A group of published UK-based authors and illustrators of picture books, children's and YA.

The Whole Megillah

The Writer's Resource for Jewish-themed Story: Fiction, Nonfiction, and Poetry

Cheryl Willis Hudson's Blog

Children's Book Author/Editor/Publisher


the networking e-zine for children's writers & illustrators

Julia Lee Author

A blog about reading and writing children's books

Tracey Baptiste


Random Acts of Reading

reviews, raves and a random assortment of book buzz

Children's Literature Crossroads

children's literature meets teaching, reading, talking, writing, and thinking

Books Around The Table

A potluck of ideas from five children's book authors and illustrators

Chapter Book Chat

A Writer Reviews Chapter Books, by Marty Mokler Banks

The WordPress.com Blog

The latest news on WordPress.com and the WordPress community.


Booksellers New Zealand's blog

Flowering Minds

Children's Book Review Site

Lauri Fortino's Frog On A (B)log

Sharing and Celebrating Picture Books Since 2009

Bobs Books Blog

Childrens and Young Adult Book Reviews by Bob Docherty

Pretty Books

One girl's adventures in books, food and travel

%d bloggers like this: