I love finding new reading material. My Kindle is filled with books from every genre – young adult, religious, sci-fi, romance, popular fiction – every decade. Some of these classics I have read and loved and have downloaded to spark an interest in my children. As a self-professed Wizard of Oz fan girl, I had to download the complete Oz collection by L. Frank Baum. I read the first book in the series and thought secretly that the world of Oz was based on some vivid and bizarre hallucination possibly from licking frogs or eating mushrooms. I never thought it could get weirder than flying monkeys, but it does.
Another book I downloaded for my son was Black Like Me by John Howard Griffin. In this true story, a white writer used prescription medication and a tanning light to darken his skin. As a “black” man he travelled through the still segregated South and documented his experience in a diary that he later turned into a novel. I remember reading this as a teenager and feeling deep empathy and shame for the injustices minorities suffered at this pivotal time in our nation’s history. I want my son to open up to this perspective as well, so when I found Black Like Me, I snapped it up. Well, downloaded it quickly.
For my son, the scientist/adventurer, I have downloaded or purchased hard copies of From the Earth to the Moon and Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne and Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson (my son loved both books). For both children, I found a copy of Bridge to Terbithia by Katherine Paterson, a book I adored as a child.
Other classics I can’t wait for my kids to devour include, Lord of the Flies (which I loved), Catcher in the Rye (which I hated) and The Great Gatsby (another love). I still have a lot of classics to consume myself. I’ve never completed an Emily Bronte novel. Or Jane Austen. I have a long way to go in my quest for personal literary growth when it comes to the classics. But my kids, they are on a good roll.
What classics do you love the most? What am I missing that I should be reading myself or that I should get for my kids?