If you have an avid reader aged a course in miracles books you may well identify with the problem that I had with my own son. How do you find a steady supply of books that your child is really going to enjoy? We always found that we were fine when he had a series on the go, such as Anthony Horowitz’s Alex Rider series, but once he’d read them all, it was always a question of what next?
I thought it might be useful to explain how I found an infinite number of books for him (well thousands, anyway), to try and give you a few ideas for shortcuts in case you find yourself in the same position.I believe that it’s pretty important to give your child only the very best books, those that have been rated with either 4* or 5*s. Reading a mediocre book at this stage, could well put a child off reading altogether. So how do you find them?
I started by “Googling” suggested reading / books for 10 year olds etc. This uncovered a few valuable sites including Cool Reads which was set up by two boys a number of years ago and recommends books for 10-15 year olds. The site has lots of reviews and hundreds of books all categorised into genres, anything from time travel to animals and nature. I simply wrote down the titles of all the 5* books, checked that the reviews were also good on Amazon (a great source of book reviews) and then ordered the books for my son, usually through the library ( in order to keep the costs down).The down side of Cool Reads is that it was only recommending books for 10-15 year olds, so if your child is younger, this site would not be so useful.
Other useful sites included which recommended books for younger children as well as older ones, but I always checked the reviews on Amazon before going ahead with a book, mainly because they sell so many, and therefore have many accompanying reviews. One of the things I always do is to avoid reviews that have been written by adults. I find that adults often give a book that they enjoyed 30 years ago an amazing write up, but that it may not suit their child who has been born into a different generation. Going into one of the large high street booksellers, writing down some titles and then checking out the reviews online was another way of accessing books popular with children.
In addition, I made extensive use of a US site which lists to find out the order of books in a series. I’m not sure whether it is still regularly updated, but I have found that most major series are listed.
With regard to library ordering, many local libraries in the UK have a system of on line ordering where you simply put in the book title or ISBN number and then reserve the book. You may also have the choice at this point of ordering the book in other formats such as large print or with a CD (as an audio book). It usually doesn’t cost anything to reserve books in this way for children and I must have saved hundreds of pounds over the last few years, ordering the books I knew my son would really enjoy rather than buying them for him.
Realising that there wasn’t a great deal of guidance on the net for finding the best books for children, I eventually set up my own site to help parents and children who find themselves in the same situation as I was.