Your Help Needed: More Books for Reluctant Readers

I love books.  Big fat books, old worn books, illustrated children’s books, coffee table books.  I like the smell of old paper and the feel of soft leather and the sprawling, tumbling cacophony of words and ideas highlighted on earmarked pages.

But I’ve noticed that not everyone shares my penchant for paperbacks.  In fact, there are a whole lot of people out there who chuck reading completely—preferring to click the remote or rock it to an iTunes video.

So how do you reach someone who NEEDS guidance and information, but is resistant to reading?

Right now on another post, secularist readers are trying to convince me that public nudity is no big deal.  This convinces me that they have not learned to appreciate the intrinsic dignity of the human body; but what shall I say?  “Here—Enjoy this copy of Mulieris Dignitatum”?  Umm…. I don’t think so.

This may seem obvious, but I think there’s a problem in that so many good Catholic books are written for readers—that is, for people who are already on the same page, and people who enjoy learning more about their already-held positions.  But for the uninitiated?  It’s tough sometimes to find good teaching materials that won’t be summarily dismissed, tossed into the recycle bin, by their intended audience.

Fiction can sometimes sneak in under the rails and impart a message; so when sci-fi author Dean Koontz’ 20-year-old short order cook Odd Thomas heads to the mall, wary of bodachs and hopeful about his future with Stormy Llewellyn, you learn a lesson about character and faithfulness.  I was pleased when a friend of mine, an enthusiastic Koontz fan, exclaimed, “What?  Koontz is CATHOLIC?!”  Proof-positive, I thought, that the novel could reach its intended audience, teaching values without overt religiosity.

Here are just a few of the titles I’ve recommended for Un-Readers.

I need more ideas, though.  Please tell me, what books should I tuck into my gift drawer, ready to present when the time is right?

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  • Kirsten Houseknecht

    err… as one of those “readers” i suspect my list would be a bit over most folks interest levels

    (to parody the song “i love big books and i cannot lie”)
    but ANYTHING by CS Lewis is a good start… The Screwtape Letters, especially the audio book with John Cleese…
    that said?
    anything, anything at all, on the Rosary.
    The rosary is the armour against heresy, and was a TEACHING tool… i happen to love the picture ones, with a picture for each mystery… but as a Historical recreation person (SCA) the history of the Rosary got me…
    as a jeweler the JEWELRY aspect of the rosary got me…

    off hand find out what your intended “not a reader” is interested in, and see if any books touch on that.