My kids have been pressing me lately for an explanation. Some books have found their way into our home and my girls just LOVE them… and I don’t (to put it mildly).
“Why, Mommy? Why don’t you like Barbie Princess Charm School?”
“Why won’t you read the Rainbow Fairy book again?”
“Why do you always want to read Ramona stories?”
Okay, my pretties, this is why.
A good book is written because someone had an idea that he wanted to get out. Maybe the writer’s mind created a character that made him laugh, or cry, or that he just loved. Maybe the author had a great story that was too good not to share. Great books are written because that is how an author communicates thoughts and ideas and feelings. These books are interesting, exciting, funny, sad, happy; they help you figure things out.
In contrast, bad books are written when their main purpose is to appeal to a large number of people so a company can sell a lot of them and make more money. Books like these are not written by authors, but salespeople who have researched what people are most likely to buy and then included as much of that as possible into the story. These books might have lots of fabulous things in them (princesses, fairies, jewels, flying horses, tinkley magic, etc.) but they often don’t even make sense and very rarely make you feel anything.
Good books make my heart sing and there are so many good ones, I just can’t wait to read them all.
Bad books make me cranky and bored and take time away from reading all those good books.
And so, my little children, that is why I want to read Beverly Cleary’s fabulous, funny, thought provoking stories of Ramona Quimby (clearly a labor of love) and why I don’t want to read Barbie Princess Charm School.
Now, let’s sit down with a good book and make our hearts sing.