Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Boys and Girls Forever

Alison Lurie's Boys and Girls Forever: Children's Classics from Cinderella to Harry Potter is a collection of essays about classic children's literature, from writings on particular authors including Hans Christian Andersen and Frank Baum, to more general topics such as modern fairy tales, children's poetry, illustrations in children's books, the role of nature in children's literature and more. Boys and Girls Forever is interesting and informative, and in places utterly charming, particularly the last essay, "Enchanted Forests and Secret Gardens." This book helped me to remember some old favorites and see some of them in a different light. And the pages are dog-eared in spots to mark stories and writers that I'd like to add to my want-to-read list, most notably John Masefield's The Midnight Folk and The Box of Delights. I'd never heard of Masefield or his stories before, and Lurie's essay devoted to him and his work have certainly piqued my interest. As if my want-to-read list needs to get any longer!

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