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Mom… I’m Bored!

I hate hearing that phrase. We have tons of video games, books, board games, a ping-pong table, balls for every sport, and more. Yet there are days, when my youngest teen especially will tell me he is bored.

He is the one who professes to hate reading, yet LOVED The Hunger Games and Catching Fire.

Summer is coming and I need a plan. Instead of shoving print books at him, I’m going to load audio books onto his iPod when he isn’t looking. And maybe I’ll even play them out by the pool sometimes instead of music. I have a feeling that if I can get him hooked I can escape the “I’m bored” for awhile.

Boom! by Mark Haddon

Kids Audio BooksMaybe I’ll try Boom! by Mark Haddon, narrated by Julian Rhind-Tutt. Haddon is best known for The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time for adults. In this YA outing, two teens bug their teacher’s staff room and discover a secret language being spoken. Paired with a strange fluorescent light flickering from one teacher’s eyes when they ask, the boys find themselves embarking on a fast paced adventure.

A lot of the books for teens seem to target girls. All of those Twilight rip-offs with sparkly vampires and love-blind girls are not going to fly in my house. Am I the only one who struggles to find good boy-reading?

Gregor the Overlander

Kids Audio Books Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne CollinsMaybe I’ll try Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins and read by Paul Boehmer. Collins wrote Hunger Games, so maybe my son will like it. Although this has more of a fantasy feeling as Gregor falls into the Underland from the laundry room in his apartment building. The prophecy states that he is important to Underland’s future. I’m going to try it. If for nothing else, I think I’ll like it!

I love Neil Gaiman. Truly, I do. I’m going to give The Graveyard Book a try. Gaiman is a skilled narrator as well as a wonderful writer. Nobody Owens lives in a graveyard and is being raised by ghosts. He must not leave the graveyard or he might be attacked by the man Jack who killed his family. What’s not to like?

The Maze Runner

I’m also considering The Maze Runner by James Dashner, read by Mark Deakins. The description reminds me of Hunger Games. Thomas wakes with no memory in the Glade. No one in the Glade knows how they got there or why. They are all boys, until one day a girl arrives with a surprising message. This one really sounds like a good bet.

Do you have suggestions for reluctant teen readers? Especially boys?

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