The Book Nook: The gift that keeps on giving – Jacksonville Daily Progress

Posted: August 17, 2020 at 4:56 pm

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That Sam-I-Am! That Sam-I-Am! I do not like that Sam-I-Am!

Penning these words from the Dr. Seuss classic, Green Eggs and Ham, (published Aug. 12, 1960, by Random House), my mind goes down memory lane 30-something years, to when my sisters boys were toddlers, and our ritual was to read this book several times a day, at their request.

It was one of the first books my mom taught me to read, launching a lifelong love of books.

When I became an aunt, reading became a favorite pastime with my niece and my nephews, and it wasnt unusual for me to make sure they had access to Dr. Seuss, because his whimsical writing style was as much fun for me as it was for them. It didnt hurt that it got them hooked on reading, too!

Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw wrote, Make it a rule to never give a child a book you would not read yourself, something many folks have taken to heart when sharing their favorite books with kids, regardless of their age.

For parents, I think if they are avid readers, they want their children to love to read, said Jacksonville Public Library Director Trina Stidham, also noting that concerned parents know that reading comprehension skills will help their children in school and in life.

And, characters like Sam-I-Am give children someone they can identify with as they deal with certain questions or topics.

Within the pages of a book, a child can see how their favorite character dealt with a difficult situation and hopefully the child might ask themselves, What would I do? Who would I go to for help? Stidham said. I think most adults would agree that within the pages of a book, a child can see and escape to a whole new world that engages their brain while staying safe at home.

As kids grow older, books marketed toward their age group begin to address tough subjects like bullying, diversity, divorce and dealing with emotions they may not understand, Stidham said.

Ive found that as the kids grow older, its pretty cool to be able to turn them on to books Ive enjoyed or found helpful.

An adult nephew of mine has asked for family recipes, and while Ive shared those taught to me by my mom, Ive also sent him a copy of Robb Walshs The Tex-Mex Cookbook: A History in Recipes and Photos, which focuses on the kind of food I grew up eating. Another excellent cook on my husbands side of the family received my copy of Lisa Fains The Homesick Texan Cookbook, which takes traditional Texas recipes to a whole new level.

For me, a book is a gift that keeps on giving. And when its one you count among your personal favorites, its a gift twice-over.

Visit your local library to discover the treasures meant to be shared with your favorite readers. In Cherokee County, residents are served by libraries in Jacksonville, Rusk, Troup, Alto, Bullard and Wells.

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The Book Nook: The gift that keeps on giving - Jacksonville Daily Progress

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August 17th, 2020 at 4:56 pm

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