Even if they can't quite admit it, tweens still love and crave the sound of your voice reading out loud, laughing over the funny parts, a sob catching in your voice over the sad ones.
Pam Allyn, author of "What to Read When: The Books and Stories to Read with Your Child--and All the Best Times to Read Them", tells us her recommendations for books that will take you and your precious tween through these last summer nights, reading together.
Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly (Henry, Holt and Co., 2009) shares the story of a girl, and budding scientist, navigating the path from childhood to young adulthood. Tweens will intuitively understand Callie's struggle to hold onto her unique passions.
Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis (Laurel Leaf, 2004) Bud is 10 and an orphan. Bud, who does NOT like to be called Buddy, is running away from an abusive past and toward a man he believes might be his father. Tweens will love hearing the highs and lows of Bud's quest.
Whole Nother Story by Cuthbert Soup (Bloomsbury USA Children's Books, 2009) When Ethan Cheeseman invents a time travel machine, he whisks his three children off on a whirlwind adventure with a myriad of bad guys in hot pursuit. Tweens will marvel at the strength of this family's bonds in the face of surprising twists and turns.
Hoot by Carl Hiassen (Yearling, 2005). Middle school is tough for Roy Eberhardt, the new kid in town. But Roy discovers that bullies sometimes help you find your way to incredible adventures. Roy and two unlikely friends fight the system and save an endangered owl population from having their only habitat flattened by a pancake house.
Meredith Sinclair is a freelance writer and blogger living with three quirky guys on Chicago's North Shore.
See more of Meredith's stories here.