It will be the summer of reading. Last summer it was bicycles, riding for hours on end for the first time without the aid of additional wheels (quiet, they are city children, it took a bit longer), and the summer before that, the summer of France, on their first trip to one of my favorite countries. But this year, in what could have been the summer of soccer (although, now wrapped, their enchantment with the World Cup was too fleeting to define an entire summer), it is the summer of reading. It's nothing new, they have always been fond of books and stories but this year their lazy selves are lolling in bed some days until 11:00, waking and reading for hours before dragging themselves downstairs in search of food. They are building forts and finding nooks to house their afternoon habit; dirt and sand covered children crawling into the corners of our home, books in hand, to pick up where they left off that morning.
We have no complaints.
When they were born my cousin gave me a book, a big thick book, called "How to Raise Readers" or something like that. I thought this was genius and planned on reading it cover to cover as soon as I found time. I suspect it is still in the exact place on the shelf where I put it almost ten years ago, having never found the time to read about reading, choosing rather to actually just read. This lackadaisical approach seems to have worked.
The Penderwicks series, a book we all loved so much so that the next two books have just been ordered from my favorite used book seller. The girls, on their own, just finished Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, as did I, and we will all write reviews next week for From Left to Write, celebrating the 50th anniversary of this really terrific book. And now they will have their own space, NorthSideFour: Kate and Mary Read, because all this reading begets writing, and I'm most curious as to what they have to say. Nose buried in books, I haven't talked to them in days.