When my son and this blog were newborns, I purchased a copy of Seth Lerer’s Children’s Literature: A Reader’s History and began reading some of the classic children’s books that I loved as a child and/or that have been influential in creating children’s literature as we know it. My project through the classics in that

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Ships at a distance have every man’s wish on board. For some they come in with the tide. For others they sail forever on the horizon, never out of sight, never landing until the Watcher turns his eyes away in resignation, his dreams mocked to death by time. (page 1) From this beginning, Zora Neale

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As I think everyone knows, The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkein continues where The Fellowship of the Ring left off. The Two Towers is split in two halves, with the first part focusing on the remaining members of the broken fellowship and the second half focusing on Frodo and Sam’s journey. While I had found

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During the first two weeks of March, I read three lighter genre classic authors. J.R.R. Tolkien’s Fellowship of the Ring took me to the fantastic Middle Earth, Georgette Heyer’s The Talisman Ring was an amusing foray into romantic historical fiction (albeit an unrealistic one), and Jules Verne’s Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea was an

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The introduction to my volume of Zora Neale Hurston’s retelling of the Biblical Exodus calls this a “badly flawed novel” and I’m sure it is. Hurston is basing her novel on a Biblical tale that lacks strong women characters, and she’s trying to make it feel modern. The introduction also criticizes the stereotyped way in

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In Castle Waiting, Linda Medley delightfully tells some new fairy tales. Some of the tales are reminiscent of traditional fairy tales, but most of them are original in some clever way. Castle Waiting is a rundown castle that is a refuge for a small community of outcast creatures. It is a place for acceptance, and

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It’s bawdy. It’s erotic. It may be inappropriate for young minds. It’s irreverent, especially considering a strict Islamic world such as the 1500s when they were written. And yet, The Arabian Nights has historically been an immensely popular collection of stories. As The New Lifetime Reading Plan reminds me, these were one of the first

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