My Love Affair With Books

Are you needing something great to read? I have a few suggestions coming up for kids and adults.

I was born in 1961. When it was time for me to learn to read, we didn’t have the awesome books they have now. We had the Dick and Jane books. BORING! It was “See Dick. See Jane. See Dick and Jane. See Dick run. See Jane run.” I’m going by memory here, but you get the gist.

But it didn’t matter to me. I wanted to learn to read! I loved reading those Dick and Jane books. It was like I was unlocking a secret code. Older kids and grown-ups will leave you out of things by spelling words so you don’t know what they’re talking about. That is sooooo mean! Especially for kids. They’re curious. They want to know EVERYTHING! I’ll give you an example from my childhood of how learning to read kept me from being left out.




I went to the doctor’s office with my Mom and my older sister, Connie. Connie sometimes got ear infections. I’m assuming that’s what we were there for. The doctor came in the office, examined Connie and then left the room. Connie whispered to Mom, thinking I didn’t know how to spell well enough yet to figure it out. She said “That doctor is a Q-U-A-C-K.”

I was sounding it out in my head. “Quack?” I said loudly. “Quack? That doesn’t make sense. How can a doctor be a quack?”

They both started laughing and shushing me. Connie said she’d explain later.

Yes! That was the beginning of unlocking the code and being in the loop!

I’ll start with the books I liked as a kid and teen, back in the 60’s and 70’s.






Old Yeller by Fred Gipson

Henry and the Club House by Beverly Cleary

Ramona the Pest by Beverly Cleary

Honestly Katy John! By Mary Calhoun

The Nancy Drew Mysteries by Carolyn Keene (Pen name for various authors)

Bambi by Felix Salten

All Dr. Seuss Books by Dr. Seuss (Theodore Seuss Geisel)

James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl

Follow My Leader by James B. Garfield

Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rauls





I always thought Dr. Seuss books came out in the late 60’s. On line, it said he started writing in the 1930’s. I didn’t know that. I didn’t know his books existed until I already knew how to read. I would have liked to have his books to learn with. They’re amazing!

I had to include the P. D. Eastman book because my name was Eastman as a kid and you never hear it anywhere very much. So, when I saw ‘Eastman’ on that book; I was excited and thought it was cool.



Love Story by Erich Segal

That Was Then, This is Now by S.E. Hinton

The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

Lisa, Bright and Dark by John Neufeld

Go Ask Alice by Anonymous or Beatrice Sparks (the net had conflicting answers for the author)  If I remember correctly, Go Ask Alice has some adult type content. It’s about sex and drugs.



I Want To Laugh. I Want To Cry by Susan Polis Schutz

I Wish You Good Spaces by Gordon Lightfoot (also a singer/song writer)

Beyond Time by Gwen Frostic


I loved being a Mom. I read to my kids a lot and I enjoyed it as much as they did. Here are some of the books I read to them.



Picasso, the Green Tree Frog by Amanda Graham

How Droofus the Dragon Lost His Head by Bill Peet (fun to read out loud – you can use various voices)

Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shell Silverstein (hilarious poetry)

A Light in the Attic by Shell Silverstein (hilarious poetry also)

I Was So Mad! By Mercer Mayer


Next, are books I read and loved as an adult. Some of these books are YA’s. Yes, I confess, I love books about teenagers. Teenagers are awesome!



The Lock Artist by Steve Hamilton

The Maze Runner Series by James Dashner

The Hunger Games Series by Suzanne Collins

The UnWholly Series by Neal Shusterman (Wow!)

Divergent Series by Veronica Roth



The Mermaid and the Bear by Ailish Sinclair

Daughters of the Lake by Wendy Webb (mystery)

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

Oliver by Charles Dickens (Classic)

Not Without My Daughter by Betty Mahmoody (Non-Fiction)

Ice Water Mansions by Doug Allyn (mystery)

Black Water by Doug Allyn (mystery)

A Dance in Deep Water by Doug Allyn (mystery)

The Burning of Rachel Hayes by Doug Allyn (mystery)

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (Classic)

Show Your Work! By Austin Kleon (Hey writers – best book on writing!)

The Giver by Lois Lowry

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls (Memoir)

Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear (mystery)

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley (mystery)

The Weed that Strings the Hangman’s Bag by Alan Bradley (mystery)

Watch For Me on the Mountain by Forrest Carter (Native American – awesome!)

Follow the River by James Alexander Thom (Native American)

Ride the Wind by Lucia St. Clair Robson (Native American – Historical fiction and a tear jerker! I sobbed.)



Return to Sleeping Bear by Mary K Eastman (That’s me. What? I HAD to plug my book! It’s on Amazon)

The Bible by God (Don’t laugh. I love God’s word!)






I got to know Doug Allyn because he lives not too far from me. A long time ago, my friend Linda told me there was an author speaking at the Library, so we went to hear him. I was impressed with him, so I read his books. If you love mysteries, you have to read his stuff. Often, I can read a book and not remember six months later what it was about. Not so with Doug’s books. He always has a few scenes that are so unique and vivid that you never forget them. They have you biting your nails and turning the pages – at the same time!




I want to encourage you to support your local book stores and libraries. They’re awesome.




Well, I hope my list gives you some ideas for reading material.

Enjoy and be safe!




P.S. With this virus going around and everyone is shut in their homes; they might like some book suggestions. Please leave comments and post your favorites. Thank you!



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