Books We Read To Pieces
We’re a family of readers. One of our boys’ first word was “book.”
I remember watching our first son when he was 18 months old. He was obviously play-acting something: standing beside a box and carrying on a babbling conversation, then turning away briefly, then coming back. Storekeeper? No, we realized; he was playing “circulation desk” like he’d seen at the library.
Occasionally I realize it’s time to replace a book, again. There are certain books which we simply wear out. I’m not talking about damage and destruction due to accident or mishandling — we have plenty of that, too — but legitimate cases of books we’ve read to pieces:
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- Bibles – everyone gets their first when they learn to read, then a study Bible when they turn 13ish. If they’re not leather bound, we do tend to wear them out
- The Chronicles of Narnia series by C.S. Lewis
- The Lord of the Rings series by J.R.R. Tolkien
- Swiss Family Robinson by Johann Wyss
- Little House series (honorary) – We always seem to find a “new” set of the Scholastic reprints before the previous one wears out completely
- All Creatures Great and Small series by James Herriot
- The Joy of Cooking by Irma Rombauer (the 1985 edition is our favorite)
- The Hunt for Red October and Executive Orders by Tom Clancy
- Mennonite Country-Style Recipes and Kitchen Secrets by Esther Shank
It’s interesting to note that some of the most significant books, the ones which literally shaped our lives, don’t show up here. Some which have had the most profound impact on my thinking are not books I re-read frequently, or books that my children beg for in the evening (“Daddy! Won’t you read The Forgotten Spurgeon again? We love Iain Murray!” … no, not even our kids)
But it would be an interesting exercise, wouldn’t it, to come up with two lists:
- What five books has your family replaced at least once, and
- What five books had the biggest impact on your personal development?
We’d love it if you’d share those lists with us below!
If you’re looking for some new family treasures, we’ve turned some of ours into audiobooks. Audiobooks are great because 1- Dogs can’t eat CDs and 2- You don’t have to read aloud – you can fold instead! Check these out:
- Hero Tales from American History by Theodore Roosevelt – with sound effects!
- A Cry From Egypt Radio Theatre with over 50 actors is just amazing.
- Pollyanna and Pollyanna Grows Up taught us all to be more grateful – in an hilarious way!
- Men of Iron is full of knights and jousting and all the things boys love so much.
- The Five Little Peppers and The Five Little Peppers Midway teach that people are more important than things.
- The Sky Pilot is a classic Western, but it isn’t grazing rights, but men’s souls at stake.
- Captains Courageous is the story of a rich boy rescued from the sea by a fishing crew who put him to work and help him become a man.
Hal & Melanie