It’s been a very busy week here at Get My Grades HQ. Wednesday the 1st of November was National Author’s Day, and although this blog goes out a little late, it is a day close to our hearts. Connecting to an author’s work can make us make the leap from reading because we have to, to developing a lifelong love of reading. Here are some of the authors who have inspired us, and we would love to hear yours, too!
Sam – When I was younger, my parents used to complain that I made my way through books far too quickly! Reading is something very close to my heart, as the ability to lose yourself in a fictional story, particularly anything with magic, wizards, witches or the like in them, is truly amazing. My favourite author would probably have to be Walter Moers, as his books have kept me daydreaming every time I read them; particularly The 13½ Lives of Captain Bluebear!
Joanne – Jacqueline Wilson will forever have my heart! I absolutely loved reading her books when I was in Primary and Secondary school. I was a book buff and no other writer engrossed me as much as she did. Her stories were funny, heart-breaking and completely gripping. My shelf was (and still is) littered in its multi-coloured glory with books by her such as; The Illustrated Mum, Vicky Angel, Candyfloss, Bad Girls, Cookie and many others. Her description and dialogue made the characters feel like they were real and in the room with you with the help of illustrator, Nick Sharratt. The nostalgia even as I write this brings a smile to my face. Jacqueline Wilson is nothing short of a legend.
Devante – One of my favourite authors is Michael Spivak – in particular, his most famous work, Calculus. His treatment of the subject is unparalleled: Spivak doesn’t cater to any particular style, for when one reads mathematics, every student notices that each book has their own idiosyncrasies, gems and flaws. Some prefer a standard definition-theorem-proof format, whilst others are far happier reading an informal narrative. As such, he has purposely designed his book to be rather inflexible, as opposed to a syllabus-like collection of theorems, which, amongst many other things, makes his work a delight to read.
Spivak’s Calculus was created whilst bearing an important thought in mind: it is perhaps the first encounter a student will have with real mathematics. Therefore, it must serve as a foundation for analysis, and the student must accept that the precise and rigorous nature of the analysis is not something which one should fear – rather, it is the medium for which mathematical ideas can be expressed, developed, explored, questioned and provoked. Spivak achieves this goal very successfully.
However, as any mathematician knows: one important aspect where one can determine whether or not a mathematical text is truly worth its salt is in its problems. Spivak’s problems range from simplistic in nature requiring mainly trivial manipulations, to those which are deviously difficult, requiring a far more ingenious and inspired approach. Each nugget of the latter gives an overwhelming feeling of satisfaction – which is very much why I was drawn to mathematics in the first place. I recommend Spivak’s Calculus to any mathematician.
Bryden – I first encountered Judith Kerr’s books as a very young child, and I quickly knew ‘The Tiger Who Came To Tea’ so well that I convinced others that I could read long before I ever could. I still have my first copy, and will always treasure it.
Judith is a wonderful children’s author, who arrived in London in 1936, as a teenage refugee fleeing Nazi Germany with her family. As well as working for the Red Cross during the Second World War, Judith had a love of art – drawing gifts for family, and later studying to become an artist. It wasn’t until her own children began learning to read that Judith wrote and illustrated her first books, and is still doing so to this day. In 2012, Judith Kerr was awarded an OBE for her services to children’s literature and Holocaust education – her trilogy ‘Out of the Hitler Time’ has been praised for giving a wonderful insight into how children saw the Holocaust and Blitz. Even her earliest works are still popular with children today, and I truly believe they will inspire children for many years to come.
I was lucky enough last year to meet Judith Kerr, at the South East London school named after her. I stuttered my thanks for her amazing work, and for inspiring my love of reading.
Harry -The most inspirational book for me was written by Ed Caesar. This was his first book and is called ‘Two Hours: The Quest’ to run the impossible marathon. I read the book while I was training for a marathon myself and the approach he had taken was fascinating and inspired me to improve and reach a new level of dedication. He writes describing the life of the most accomplished and successful long-distance runners, engaging the reader to look deep inside the quest for these runners to beat the two-hour mark for a marathon. If you love reading about sport, running, biology, challenges, culture, heartbreak and success then I thoroughly recommend this book as Ed Caesar manages to capture all of this.
Arthur – “Does you dad roar?” and anything else I can get my hands on, I love to read! At the moment, I really like The Wheels On The Bus as it makes a sound when I press the button and Mummy is currently reading Matilda to me at bedtime, which I love!