Cough. Cough, cough. This cold is kicking my butt, you guys. It started with a ridiculous amount of head congestion and exhaustion, then got better, then came back with a vengeance. It’s now settled into my chest and I can barely function or remember my name.
So it’s pretty funny that today’s #AMonthOfFaves prompt is What is the most unique and/or memorable book you’ve read this year? That’s the questions our lovelies hostesses – Andi, T., and Tanya – are asking this morning, and it took me awhile (hello, zero focus), but I thought of my answer.
At first, my answer was going to be Tiny Beautiful Things, because HELLO! Who writes like that?! Each entry is attacked from such a unique, clever, astoundingly gorgeous angle and filled with such honest, compassionate, life-changing words. But I don’t want this month’s worth of entries to all be about that one book, so I peeked through my book list to see what would be my next answer.
The book I landed on was most definitely memorable. I read Persepolis by Marjanne Satrapi this fall, after many recommendations from some of my favorite book bloggers. They, of course, were absolutely right in thinking I would fall hard for the spunky protagonist caught up in the Iranian revolution. My daughter Bee, not unlike the fictionalized Marjanne, saw that I was reading a graphic novel and started peppering me with questions. What was it about? Would she like it? And the constant refrain: Was I finished yet?
I wasn’t sure if I should let my 9-year-old read a book that discussed such heavy topics, but Satrapi handled difficult issues with grace and stayed true to a young girl’s voice, even when it needed a bit of depth. But I don’t believe much in shielding my kiddos from anything they want to read. If they can’t handle it, they’ll stop. And believe me when I say my girlies are not shy about asking questions (sometimes I wish they were a bit more reluctant after a few of the doozies!), so I let Bee-girl decide. I gave her a brief description of why should and maybe would not like to read it. She opted in. And what followed was one of the best book club discussions I’ve ever had.
It took her almost a month to work her way through all of the book, especially given that it’s beyond her reading level, the print is small, and she’s a slow reader reading in very small chunks of time. But she did it and I was so proud! She asked thoughtful questions, so I know she understood most (if not all) of what she read, at least on an upper-elementary level. She wasn’t bored at all because of the fantastic illustrations. And she felt so proud of herself and worldly to have read a “grown-up” book. My reluctant reader was so annoyed when the bookstore didn’t have Persepolis 2 available and for once I can say Bee will love getting a book for Christmas, because I found it for her.
The book itself might not be my all-time favorite, or even any better than a dozen or so other five-star books I read this year. But the experience I got to share with my baby girl definitely made the reading of the book one of the most memorable and rewarding experiences of 2015.