Archive for the ‘General Thoughts’ Category

I’ve posted on this before, but the issue recently came up again in my practice so I’ll get back on my soap box. Why should I read to my toddler? Everyone says I should . . . but why? An IPad can read a book to a child and the child can even control it—isn’t […]


John Green‘s Looking for Alaska won the 2006 ALA Michael L. Prinz Award and was the 2005. School Library Journal’s Book of the Year. Sumner County Schools in Tennessee have just banned the book, considering a brief oral sex scene as too racy for the teen audience. They are not the first to do so: […]


Sorry about the long time between posts. Life, of course, has a way of getting between me and good intentions. Next post should be about my friend John Hutton, proprietor of Blue Manatee Books here in Cincinnati, and his new box set of picture books. That will be fun. I’m wading through a stack of […]


Jan brings up that Snow White is one of the most passive of heroines. What does she do? She begs the huntsman to spare her, she cries and she runs. She enters the dwarfs’ house and steals a meal. When she wakes up she tells her tale to the dwarfs and agrees to cook and […]


The Book Thief

02Apr11

When the narrator of the novel is Death, it’s hard to imagine that all will end well. The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak, is narrated by Death and takes place in Germany between 1939 and 1945. True, Death plays a major role in the story and the times, but the protagonist is Liesel Meminger, who […]


Jan points out that it isn’t just that mom can’t tolerate the daughter’s sexual maturity that causes the mother/daughter (or witch-evil stepmother or whatever/daughter) relationship to go awry, it’s the mother’s desire to control and contain the whole of the daughter’s life. All of Rapunzel’s desires to be a separate, autonomous human being, to be […]


There’s a lot that’s on the surface in Rapunzel, even more so in the older, unexpurgated versions of the fairy tale. Of course, it’s a coming of age story: Rapunzel goes from a 12 year old to an adult with children. Mother Gothel obviously views the prospect of Rapunzel going through puberty and becoming a […]


Rapunzel

04Jan11

This wonderful, complex fairy tale has multiple versions including, among others, two by the Brothers Grimm, an Italian version called Petrosinella (Parsley) by Giovambattiste Basile published in 1634 and a 10th century Persian version called Rudaba. The Grimms’ version is, according to Wikipedia, an adaptation of Persinette, Charlotte-Rose de Caumont de La Force originally published in […]


What have we established? Kids love stories, and some stories seem to be timeless. They occur across cultures and over thousands of years. Children’s picture books are loved through generations and these books and fairy tales seem to accrue power through repetition.  (OK we didn’t actually establish the repetition thing, but anyone who’s had the […]


Life’s been hectic, but in a good way–weddings and significant birthdays all over to attend and enjoy–but it does make keeping up with a blog a bit hit or miss, and I confess to missing more than I ought. On the positive side for the blog, at least, I’ve been doing airport reading, and I […]