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To Nook or not to Nook . . .


That was only one of many questions I had for 11-year-old Allison Donahue. Her answer was a resounding “Yeah!” She loves her Nook.


The interview came about because I’m curious about Tween reader preferences as well as their take on electronic readers. Allison is a voracious reader, so I knew she’d be an excellent candidate for a chat about books over a cup of hot chocolate.


An electronic reader was one of the items on Allison’s Christmas list. She and her father spent time researching the various e-reader options and while some of her classmates have Kindles, Allison opted for the Nook. Allison gave me a quick Nook demo and, I must say, it’s pretty neat. It’s easy to use, has Wi-Fi access and Allison can either purchase e-books online or she can borrow e-books from the library or other Nookers. She definitely prefers reading on her Nook over traditional books.


Allison reminds me of myself at that age; quick to disappear into story land for hours on end, her appetite for a good read is insatiable. But Allison isn’t just a bookworm. Like me at that age, Allison’s loves to ride her bike, taking in the sights and sounds of the neighborhood. Her reading tastes run similar to mine (then and now). Allison loves horror, fantasy and realistic fiction – real life stories about kids. She’s NOT a fan of non-fiction. We both have an inner Harry Houdini; we like to escape the mundane real world for the more exciting world of fiction and fantasy.


We chatted about her favorite books. Allison mentioned Linda Urban’s A Crooked Kind of Perfect. She’s impressed that Linda Urban wrote the book “sounding like a real kid and not just like an adult writing as a kid.” Allison has read A Crooked Kind of Perfect a couple of times and even has a copy of it on her Nook. Allison’s most favorite book of all time is Ruined by Paula Morris. She was kind enough to lend me her treasured copy. It’s a ghost story and I can’t wait to read it.


After much umming and aahing, Allison chose J.K. Rowling as her favorite author. Her favorite picture book is The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter and she has that on her Nook too. Allison is a fan of Ann M. Martin’s Baby-sitters Little Sisters series but says those are too young for her now. She likes books where the main characters are 12-18 years old.


Like many kids her age, Allison feels too old for most of the books in the juvenile section of the library and is too young for some of the YA books. She wants to read books that are longer and more mature. Allison is beginning to realize that YA books are not just categorized as such because of readers’ abilities and endurance but also due to their subject matter and content. Still, when Allison’s visiting the library or the bookstore, most of the time she finds the books she wants to read in the YA section. Allison wishes there were more sad books like the One Last Wish series by Lurlene McDaniel.


When it comes to main characters, Allison doesn’t care if it’s a boy or a girl, just so long as the story is really good. She doesn’t mind if there’s a little romance in the books she chooses, just so long as the plot is gripping and it’s not just a love story.


Allison is the reader I want to write for.


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 25th, 2011 09:33 pm (UTC)
I love Allison!
Nice interview, Angela. Love that inner Houdini.
Feb. 25th, 2011 09:38 pm (UTC)
And I had so much fun talking to Allison. I have to tell you that Allison was quite impressed that I know you.
Feb. 25th, 2011 09:43 pm (UTC)
I'm impressed that you know Allison.
Feb. 27th, 2011 01:35 pm (UTC)
Allison is smart and funny. Interviewing her was the highlight of my week.
Feb. 26th, 2011 04:30 am (UTC)
What a wonderful post! Alison has excellent taste in books, based on what you've shared here.
Feb. 27th, 2011 01:33 pm (UTC)
Thank you. And look, I figured out how to wrap the text around the photos. It looks so much better this way.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )


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