Parents Need Books, Too

“We need to read more,” my husband says to me as he hits the lights. We had just finished a 3-episode Netflix binge, spending our only time together for the day staring at the TV screen.

I don’t disagree.

I grew up reading old-school books. Paper books. Tangible pages to turn, dusty smells to inhale. There was a time when I didn’t go anywhere without a book. My parents instilled a love of reading in my sister and me, which I will be forever thankful for. These days it’s all tech, all the time. The ways of the book are (nearly) gone, but not forgotten.

books beside my bed

Some of my favorite family memories of when we were younger are of all four of us nestled in our special house nooks each reading whichever novel we were gifted for Christmas. Usually, we finished our books in less than two days. Novels were my original guilty pleasure – staying up past bedtime, begging to read just one more chapter, sneaking a flashlight into my room so I could continue to read under the covers.

Late night reads have since been replaced by wasted hours on my laptop or smart phone, not reading e-books, but aimlessly surfing the internet. Without fail, I will do this for an hour or so, realize what time it is, and say to my husband (or him to me). I should have been reading.

Reading as an adult, especially as a new parent, is a privilege, to say the least. I can’t remember the last time I was able to sit down and read more than a few pages in a row without some kind of interruption. A lot of the time, I don’t even have the desire to read. For some reason, it seems to require a significant more amount of effort than flipping on the tv… or Instagram.  But, if I do read, I never regret it. Ever.

My dad is my personal hero when it comes to reading. To this day he reads 1-2 books a week. That might be lowballing it, actually. He has a smart phone, but he might be the only person on the planet that actually uses it for making phone calls. He carries a paperback book with him wherever he goes. Bank line up? Book. Lunch break? Book. Airport pickup? Book.  (Yes, he does enough of those to warrant a mention, lol.)

It’s not a difficult thing to do, if you think about it. The amount of time spent on public transit alone (when I’m working) could have me reading a novel a week. And my house is full of books at any given moment; it’s not like I’d have to search to find something to get me started.

For those looking for something new (or old) to read, here are a few, well 30, options:

Kelsinwonderland’s Reading List for Parents Who Like to Read, Too

13 Books I’ve Read More than Once Twice//

  • The Traveller by John Twelve Hawks (Freerunners, sword-bearing assassins, and out of body experiences.)
  • The Thief of Always by Clive Barker (The CREEPIEST “kids” book of all time, yet I’ve still read it like 5+ times.)
  • Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card (A kid plays video games for a living but is also a war hero.)
  • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien (Classic fantasy with all the creatures.)
  • The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams (Totally out there, and hilarious.)
  • The Hollow Chocolate Bunnies of the Apocalypse by Robert Ranking (You need a pretty warped sense of humour to like this one… better you look it up on Wikipedia.)
  • Ready Player One by Ernest Cline (Pop-culture mecca for 80’s babies.)
Fast-Paced Thrillers
  • Fear Nothing by Dean Koontz  (A nocturnal hero and terrifying primates.)
  • The Jason Bourne Trilogy by Robert Ludlum  (Classic amnesiac spy game stuff.)
  • Red Dragon by Thomas Harris (Before Hannibal was the big deal.)
  • Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton (Enough science to make you believe it could happen.)
Easy-Read Thrillers with a Supernatural Edge
  • Odd Thomas by Dean Koontz  (He sees dead people, but in a fun way?)
  • When the Wind Blows by James Patterson (A little girl has wings and is a total badass.)
  • One Day by David Nicholls (A time-jumping love story.)
  • Juliet, Naked by Nick Hornby (Now it’s a movie… read the book first.)


books beside my bed

10 Share-Worthy Auto/Biographies

  • Open by André Agassi  (Feels like you’re reading his thoughts. So engaging.)
  • Strange Fascination: David Bowie by David Buckley (My icon.)
  • Scar Tissue by Anthony Kiedis (Holy drugs and sex, Batman!!)
  • Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson (I LOLed till I peed a little.)
  • This is a Call by Dave Grohl (Super interesting if you like music stories.)
  • Bossypants by Tina Fey (Awkward girl power that brings the laughs.)
  • A Beautiful Mind by Sylvia Nassar (Still can’t believe this was real life.)
  • Into the Wild by John Krakauer (Uber sad and lonely.. and that’s just the reader.)
  • Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling  (Hilarious and self-deprecating. Glorious combo.)
  • The Chris Farley Show by Tanner Colby and Tom Farley (Fascinating insights into the life of a comedic genius.)


7 Actually Helpful Self Improvement Books //

  • Do Cool Shit by Miki Agarwal
  • The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin
  • You are a Badass by Jen Sincero
  • The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Steven Covey
  • The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell
  • Mind Gym: An Athlete’s Guide to Inner Excellence by Gary Mack and David Casstevens
  • Make a Name For Yourself: 8 Steps Every Woman Needs to Create a Personal Brand Strategy for Success by Robin Fisher Roffer


mom reading ready player one to her son


What’s on your reading list these days? Share with me in the comments!

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