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Selecting Books For Reluctant Readers

Do you have a reluctant reader in your family? Selecting books that fit can be extra challenging. StorySnoops has some tips that have worked. Today’s guest writer is Shannon Knowlton of StorySnoops. She is one of four moms (see photo) who love to read and enjoy sharing their passion with any captive audience—friends, neighbors, and family. In other words, anyone who will listen! Secretly, they each fancy themselves matchmakers of sorts, gaining giddy satisfaction from facilitating a successful pairing between book and reader. Their ongoing quest to find fiction that fits inspired them to create StorySnoops. Now they facilitate “literature liaisons” on a broad scale for young readers.

It is such an exciting milestone when your child first begins to read! Some take to reading easily, while others do not. The good news is that there is a book out there for every kind of child and every type of reader, which we have discovered in the course of reading almost nine hundred books for our website.

For those who have a reluctant reader in the family, selecting books that fit can be extra challenging. Here are some tips that have worked for us:

Parallel Reading. This may sound odd, but reading the same book as your independent reader goes a long way. Not only does it create excellent opportunities for discussion and bonding, it also makes your reader feel like you are interested in what they are doing.

Family Read-Alouds. This is a wonderful way to bridge the gap between children of varying ages within the same family. Reading aloud gives everyone a chance to chime in about the latest plot twist, or what’s going to happen next.

Books on CD in the Car. Obviously, it helps to give reluctant readers great books so that they want to keep reading. But this doesn’t always work in the traditional way. When your mom says, “Here’s a book I think you’d like,” it can be the kiss of death. So sometimes you have to get sneaky. A book on CD playing in the car, for example, can pique a child’s interest. You never know, they may get hooked!

Think Outside the Box. Carol Rasco, CEO of Reading is Fundamental, recommends letting reluctant readers choose their own reading material. She encourages family members to be patient and allow children to read whatever appeals to them—magazines, graphic novels or comic books, newspapers, on-line books, audio books—it all counts! Then you can expand the methods of reading and topics slowly over time.

Below are some of our picks for reluctant readers. For more suggestions, check out StorySnoops.com, where we have lists of books for all different types of readers by age and interest.

Books for Reluctant Readers – Ages 8+


Books For Family Read-Alouds

1 thought on “Selecting Books For Reluctant Readers”

  1. There are a lot of intriguing choices on your list. Since I read “adult” books by Hiassen and Barry, I’m sure that they’ve got the right stuff to intrigue kids, too. And I did not know that Gregory Maguire had a kids’ book. Thanks for the info!

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