I first read about this great father-daughter bonding experience in this NY Times article. To summarize, when his younger daughter was in fourth grade father and librarian Jim Brozina made a pact with her to read to her for 100 nights straight. They did manage to reach the 100 night goal of their “Reading Streak.” They didn’t stop there though – they continued reading until the daughter’s first day of college! You can watch a video about the “Reading Streak” from CBS here.
Well, it turns out that the daughter, Alice Ozma, went on to write a book about her experience with the “Reading Streak” called The Reading Promise: My Father and the Books We Shared.
It’s a sweet story about how she and her father bonded over all those hours of reading together, as well as the (not always so sweet) story of their life together during those years, which included divorce, the older sister’s departure for study abroad and college, and of course, Alice’s own growing up. The Reading Promise is a really inspiring read for parents about the importance of reading and just spending quality time with your children.
As a parent, the book really made me excited thinking about what books Little L and I will be able to share as he gets older. There’s a great list of some of the books Alice and her father read together over the years in the back of the book I’ll probably use for ideas! As a librarian, I found the section of the book on Mr. Brozina’s challenges late in his career particularly interesting. It’s an unfortunate reflection of what so many school librarians are facing today – testing and technology vs. the importance of helping kids discover the joy of reading. Highly recommended!