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April 04, 2009


I have 3 readers and one on the brink. I love that my kids love to read. I love tying lit. to our lives...For example, one day I read Blueberries for Sal to my 4 year old. Afterward we found a pail and took it to a local farm and picked raspberries together (blueberries were picked over). We had a great time listening to the berries go "plunk" in the pail like Sal did.
Why are mormon women writing YA lit? I think there's a niche for clean, intelligent YA lit with heros & heroines who help our youth see their possibilities. I don't think that's just a mormon thing either. Like many parents & youth, my oldest wishes there was more good YA lit. I wouldn't be surprised if she became one of the many mormon YA lit authors as well.

I've loved reading SO many books to my children, and LOVE to see them independently reading on their own now. I especially enjoyed reading Harry Potter books out loud to my older boys when they were younger, and I enjoyed reading "Princess Adademy" among others, with my daughters. I have "The Amaranth Enchantment" on my list, but two of my daughters have snatched it ahead of me, and read it alone already. I'm most thrilled that the love of reading has been passed along. It's fun to share books with each other, now that they're getting older. About seven years ago, my second son read "Holes" and loved it, so begged me to read it after him. I did, and enjoyed it as well, and then what fun when it was made into a movie, and we could go see that and discuss the differences! LOVE this topic.

As for mormon authors of YA fiction, I think the world has so much to choose from, that a surprisingly clean and wholesome take on the same genres of literature presented in less virtuous ways becomes enticing and refreshing.

I think that Mormon writers do well in YA literature because the themes that resonate with that age group are largely idealistic -- and those qualities are apparent in the average Mormon psyche.

I don't have children, but as a tutor, often read aloud with my students - and they love it! I recently read Huckleberry Finn aloud with one of my students, and it was enriching for both of us as we explored the themes, ideas, and social commentary -- and simply laughed a lot. For parents interested in exploring the intellectual and academic benefits of reading aloud to their kids, I suggest checking out The Read Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease.

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  • When I took a sabbatical from Wall Street to pursue a different dream and help others live theirs, I learned that women in the U.S. may be placated, even pampered, but because we aren't dreaming, we are also desperate and depressed. Drawing on a variety of sources, ranging from academic studies to pop culture, dare to dream encourages us to dream. And then to act on our dreams.


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