Cultivating my daughter’s love of reading — Finally!

Reading has always been important to me. There is nothing in this world like the feeling of a worn book in your hand. Or, the pleasure you can get from being the very first to turn the pages of a brand new novel. I’ve been reading for as long as I can remember and it has always been a dream of mine to show my children the joy and wonder of the world of books. Sadly, my son is not a reader. Sure he’ll read something if he has an assignment and for a few breif years in elementary school he ulldozed through the Goosebumps series — what boy doesn’t read those? But now? Nah, he’s just not interested – *sigh.

Up until recently, I wasn’t having much success in convincing my tween daughter that reading could be more than just a way to pass a boring afternoon. yes, she has always “liked” to read but she’s never  had a true passion for reading, never Loved to read, and could really take it or leave it. I was starting to give up my hopes of having children who absolutely loved books as I do. Then enter the friends.

Maximum Ride books

Just before Christmas, our daughter’s friend C. became obsessed with a book series. The Maximum Ride series by James Patterson. She talked about it all the time at school and couldn’t wait to read it every chance she was able to. My daughter started telling me about how obsessed C. was with this book series and wondered what was so great about it! She borrowed the first book and was hooked. We bought her the Maximum Ride box set for Christmas. She was so happy!

As Pie opened the gift, she looked up at me and said, “but where are the rest of them Mom?” Oops! I hadn’t done my research! The box set only contained the first 3 books of the series, there were four more! Not wanting to waste money on books that I wasn’t sure she would lose interest in or not, I told her if and when she finished the first three, I would buy the other books in the set for her.

my daughter's stack of books

By the first week of January, it was clear that like her friend C., Pie was hooked by Maximum Ride as well. I ordered the last four books for her on January 5th. She breezed through them in no time at all. Her friend C., had already finished the Maximum Ride books and was starting on The Hunger Games series. Now, I read this young adult series last year when my Jazzercise instructor and some other ladies were talking about it. I loved all three books and was pretty excited for Pie to be showing interest in reading them as well!

Last summer I had found the first book, The Hunger Games, at a thrift store for a quarter, so I let her read it to see if it was something she would enjoy. She did, which gave me an excuse to buy the other two books on Amazon so she could read them and I could reread them. What is even cooler is that The Hunger Games movie is coming out next month and we are SO excited to go see it together now that we have both read and loved the series! 

I am hoping that this book reading trend continues now that she has realized how interesting, fun, sad, happy, emotional and gripping a good read can be! What is your 11/12 year old tween reading? I need some good suggestions for her!

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About the Author

Henrietta Newman is a self-loving empty-nester into smudging, nature, yoga, fitness, healthy living, hunting, camping, hiking, tech, video games, gadgets, recipes, reviews and more.
With a love for the outdoors and visiting local attractions in and around NW PA and Lake Erie, you never know what you'll find in my nest! Subscribe to A Hen's Nest so you don't miss the fun!



  1. 1

    I wish I still read like I did at a younger age. Luckily Zoe who is only 4 loves reading.

  2. 2

    Reading is about learning, that’s why I never feel disgrace in collecting different kinds of books and learn from it… Its great to be inspire in the name of love.

  3. 3

    Coincidentally, I just posted on my own blog about my 11-year old son’s obsession with reading. He reads actually too much — when he should be paying attention to something other than a book. We’re a reading family, (heck, I’m a writer and editor by profession), but he reads and forgets to eat, and has his eyes in a book while crossing a street.

  4. 4

    I just love to read. It’s so cool when you read and see the whole story in your head. Like your own exclusive powerful :)

  5. 5

    That’s great! I LOVE to read, and really wish more people would realize how wonderful it is. I’m 22, and I can’t tell you how many people look at me like I’m crazy when they see me pull a book out of my purse.

  6. 6

    One thing I want in reading this kind of creation is that, I am learning at the same time… That’s why I will never left this kind of attitude fades away…

  7. 7

    It’s peer pressure used for good!!! I love it! I hope this has spurred a love for reading that will continue. I wish I had more time to read, growing up my mom read books all the time and it was such an inspiration. I am more of a magazine gal.

  8. 8
    lisa brown says

    You did a good job in getting her to read. I wish my parents had been that way. I am a lousy reader, but do like to read.

  9. 9

    Oh i love maximum ride! the last book comes out in August this year!

  10. 10

    I allso heard theyre making a movie for 2013

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