So JP’s reading, as I’ve noted here before, continues to improve as he approaches six years old. This leads to interesting opportunities, not just for his own reading, but for what I might choose to read to him.
One of my fondest memories from childhood was my father reading The Hobbit to me and my brother, Jason. As with my first marriage, my parents split when I was quite young. I lived with my mother and would see my father on weekends, when he would pick us up from my mother’s house in Jamaica, Queens, and take us into Manhattan to his apartment in the West Village. That’s where much of the reading would take place, on that lengthy subway ride, my father declaiming passages in a loud voice. Interestingly, the other passangers on the subway would get drawn in to the story, and soon, my father was telling a subway bedtime story to a carload of pissed-off, potentially homicidal, 1970s New Yorkers.
I doubt that JP will have the same experience, as I tend to do most of my reading to him at home. But I do have a decision to make: Do I try to recreate an experience from my childhood—The Hobbit—or do I accept reality and read him something he is familiar with and that he’d probably like better—Harry Potter?