Wednesday, January 28
Sunday, January 25
I was a reading child. I got books from our village library, our town library, and the city library. Books from Providence would come home with my father, who would go there and get three at a time for me, recommended by the children's librarian. (No -- I never visited a school library, though I'm now a school librarian.) I lived in these books. Besides playing outdoors, in the small woods and on the shore, and riding my bike all over the neighborhood, reading is where I lived. When my father would come home with three new books, I'd wait till after supper or bedtime, get into my pajamas, then get into bed and examine each one in the stack -- smell it, look at it, savor its promise, then decide which one to read first. One day when I was about nine, he brought home what would become one of my favorite, most magical books. It was The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Once I went into that wardrobe, my life changed forever. My bedroom had a large closet under the eaves, and I'd lie in bed at night, KNOWING that if I just believed hard enough I could go into my closet and reach back and enter Narnia. I never got out of bed and actually tried -- so maybe some part of me also knew that it wouldn't happen. Such is the duality of childhood thinking and desire. You KNOW that it's true, that the only thing lacking is your lack of faith. And you're not willing to risk being wrong. So you go on thinking about your closet and what might happen if you really try. (Just as, a few years later in junior high school, when I went on a science fiction reading jag, thanks to the tastes of a boy I had a crush on, I KNEW that if I believed and tried hard enough, then ESP would work, and I could silently transmit my thoughts to David Sanderson across the room.)
Saturday, January 24
So, if you're an adult, and you appreciate fine picture book illustration, find a copy of this gem. But you probably shouldn't share it with your youngest friends.
Coming soon: the Babar Question