Cover Image: The Joy of Reading

The Joy of Reading

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

The Joy of Reading by Donalyn Miller and Teri S. Lesesne (Heinemann 2022) is a beautiful book for educators about how we can help develop a love of reading with the children in our lives. With a focus on what the joy of reading is and how we nurture this joy within our students, Miller and Lesesne make a strong argument for letting children have plenty of time for free reading and lots of access to books.

Much of what is said in The Joy of Reading seems obvious to me, a homeschool parent and a regular reader of books both for my own joy and for current or future reading with my children. I found myself right at home during the discussion about what the joy of reading is, why time and access are essential, and why we should allow students to choose their own reading material. These are concepts I have long believed in, and it made me sad that my girls (who are in public school this year) don’t have as much time to self-select and choose to read on their own.

The most valuable portions of The Joy of Reading were the final two chapters. These chapters addressed honoring a reader’s natural response to reading and why discussing books in a community environment helps build on the joy of reading even further. Reading this book made me excited to be a part of a book club again sometime! The only teacher talk came in this section

The Joy of Reading is truly a gorgeous book. With full-color watercolor illustrations, pull quotes from literary experts and student readers, stylized lists with book recommendations, and colorful sidebars, just picking it up is a treasure. As a parent-teacher education book, The Joy of Reading felt a little bit self-explanatory and yet reading it brought the joy of reading into my own life.

Note: I received a review copy of The Joy of Reading.
Was this review helpful?
I am an elementary school teacher, and I loved this book! This was a no-frills read about bringing the love of reading back to children. "Here's the truth: It is possible to teach children how to read well without killing their love for reading in the process." This text outlines how teachers, librarians, administrators, and families can create the conditions for joyful reading. Thank you so much to Heinemann and NetGally for the advanced copy.
Was this review helpful?
An excellent resource for parents, librarians, and teachers, this book is a gem, a guide to lay the foundation for lifelong readers. As parents and teachers, this is what we all want to instill in our children: the joy of reading. The authors argue that joyful reading: relies on abundant access and time to read, encourages readers' choices, honors readers' responses, and thrives in a supportive community. 

A quote in the book from Beverly Cleary summarizes everything in the book so well: 
"Children should learn that reading is pleasure, not just something that teachers make you do in school."

Many thanks to Netgalley and Heinemann Publishing for the ARC. All opinions are my own.
Was this review helpful?
Dnf, this book was extremely slow and didn’t catch my attention. I loved the concept of reading a book about the love of reading but this book just didn’t do it for me personally
Was this review helpful?
Thanks to #netgalley for the ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review. Disclaimer: I am always drawn to books about reading/bookish people or bookish loving looking books, this was one of those books I was drawn to just by the cover and the title, I didn't even read what it was about I just dove straight into it. This book  was meant to be a guide teachers, librarians, school administrators, and caregivers who love reading, to help them find a way to encourage a love of reading in children. 
From the book's blurb 
"Now consider: When talking with children about their reading lives at school, are you likely to hear about this transformative reading joy? Or are you more likely to hear about reading logs, book reports, and standardized tests? For too many young readers, reading is joyless. It is something that is required of them, but not something that they choose to do.

Here's the truth: It is possible to teach children how to read well without killing their love for reading in the process."
 
When I was reading this book I found it to also serve as a reminder as to why those of us who already have a love of and find joy in reading, love books so much. It was such an interesting read and sent me on my own trips down memory lane of some of the books I have read through different stages of my life and how they have impacted and shaped me into the reader I am today. This book could even serve as a great starting point for adults who aren't particularly fond of reading to encourage them to also try reading for joy. As a schoolgirl one of my greatest joys was when the Scholastic Bus would arrive at my school and I could collect the books I had saved up my pocket money to buy. Reading this delightful and informative book was a great reaffirming read of why I have and always will continue to find such joy, comfort and calm when reading. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ #thejoyofreading #donalynmiller #teri s lesense #netgalley #tea_sipping_bookworm #goodreads #litsy #thestorygraph #bookqueen #bookstagram #amazonkindle #amazonaustralia
Was this review helpful?
I was only able to read the first part of the book, but I will definitely purchase this book so that I can make notes, fill it with sticky notes and use it to talk about the teaching of literacy with my colleagues.  I found many ideas that could be used in my work and many parts that both affirmed and stretched my thinking.  I greatly respect both Donalyn and Teri's work, and this is another solid professional read that I will recommend to the teachers I work with.
Was this review helpful?
Donalyn Miller is just amazing. All teachers, especially reading teachers, need to read The Joy of Reading as well as her older books. She knows how to make kids love reading. Period. 

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
Donalyn Miller, “The Book Whisperer,” as usual offers great advice for teachers. Students must love reading to enjoy it, but that love is often killed in the process of teaching them to read. Miller offers suggestions to help with this issue, and reminds teachers of their own love of reading.
Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC.
Was this review helpful?
I am a reading teacher, and I loved this book! This was a no-nonsense read for teachers about bringing the love of reading back to kids.
Was this review helpful?
Great nonfiction text for reading teachers on sparking a love of reading. I enjoyed the stories within.
Was this review helpful?
What a joy to have this book from two incredible educators & children's literacy supporters! Donalyn Miller & Teri Lesesne have had the biggest influence on me from the start of my teaching career, and I can hear the warmth in their voices in the pages of this professional book. I hope many educators can use it to center joy in their classrooms and reading lives of their students.
Was this review helpful?
I have really enjoyed Donnalynn Miller’s other book so I immediately put this on my wishlist. Unfortunately I didn’t manage to open the book on any of my devices. I’m really disappointed as I am an advocate for teaching reading and creating reading motivation in teenagers. 
I will probably order the book anyway as I am really interested in the contents.
Was this review helpful?
As a library assistant I enjoy  reading books about about books. And I enjoyed The Joy of Reading, because since I was a kid I've always loved reading because it has always been a means of escape. And I love that this book highlights that.
Was this review helpful?
Wonderful book from Donalyn Miller.that is sure to ignite the passion for reading. Wonderful for student teachers and teachers alike who are looking for ways to freshen their reading instruction.
Was this review helpful?
Wow, what a labor of love the creation of this book must have been! The authors have given us a comprehensive guide that gives new perspectives on fostering a love of reading. I had so many ah-ha moments while reading this book. I will be purchasing it for our library and discussing it widely.
Was this review helpful?
I have already purchased this title after seeing this book on NetGalley. I am a certified reading teacher. This book is a handbook to encourage students to read and enjoy it. We as teachers must find ways that the students will want to read. I believe the people who read this book will see the value instantly as I did. Thank you the opportunity to read and review this book.
Was this review helpful?
Miller and Lesesne speak to the importance of reading not simply as a limited act to be tested, but as a life-giving experience.
Was this review helpful?
5 stars = Outstanding!

It was no surprise how excellent this book is. I have come to expect this sort of quality from anything produced by Donalyn Miller. The book focuses around the central idea that reading should be an enjoyable experience, so avoiding things that kill the joy and fostering the things that help it grow.

Great blend of stories and real kid quotes alongside research, practical examples, and advice for education professionals. Looking forward to sharing this with every teacher I know.
Was this review helpful?
As an English teacher, this book really encompasses the joy and love u try to install in my students when it comes to books. 
My one gripe is that it wasn’t on the kindle, which made it difficult to read on my phone!
Was this review helpful?
As a reader and librarian, I know firsthand the joy of reading. I also know how hard it is to sometimes impart that joy to my students. How do I truly capture everything reading does and is and convince those reluctant readers to take the plunge. In The Joy of Reading, Donalyn Miller and Teri Lesesne bring decades of experience to highlight the importance of reading joy and how teachers can support this joy.

The Joy of Reading is divided into five parts. In the first, the authors address the key part of this book. What reading joy is and why it is important. They also raise the issue of how reading in school can sometimes kill that joy. Part two focuses on access and time. Citing research around the time children really need to engage with reading, this section of the book provides practical ideas for encouraging students, including using classroom libraries, school libraries and public libraries. They also raise the issues and barriers that censorship creates.

Part three brings us to the importance of readers’ choice. From book talks to reader surveys, this section providers readers with lots of ideas for sparking reader choice. In part four we move to reading responses and how we can make these more authentic for students. Finally, part five takes a wider look at reading communities and how to build a community of readers. Along with a range of appendices that includes a reader survey, this book is designed to be used in practice. This book is targeted at teachers, but there will be some appeal to librarians. I love how the authors are not afraid to raise important and contentious issues or call out bad practice.

Throughout the book, the authors provide personal reflections, examples from their classroom practice and anecdotes. It makes it an easy book to read cover to cover. I adored the little graphics scattered in the pages, especially the frequent book recommendation stacks. Super cute and the colours, graphics and design make this a really beautiful book, which is so important (and often overlooked) in professional books.

I hope this book inspires teachers to help direct their students towards a love of reading joy.

The publishers provided an advanced readers copy of this book for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own.
Was this review helpful?