There I was all set to read the Book Review section and write a scathing report and I open up the pages of the paper to find it devoted to kids’ books this week. I wonder why? What could make them do that? They at least present us with a few non-kids related columns, which I’ve covered below.
The main piece devoted to secret places at least mentions some oldies but goodies—The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, The Secret Garden, The Indian in the Cupboard (I remember my fourth grade teacher read us this book everyday after lunch. I loved this book). Jodi Daynard wrote a nice piece on the value of a school’s curriculum and how difficult it can be to balance classics versus newer writers. James Sallis’ devotes his ‘A Reading Life‘ to Ed McBain. It’s a nice tribute to a great writer, who though he wrote many books, had much more to offer.
Amanda Heller has the ‘Short Takes‘ this week and looks at The Mysterious Flam of Queen Loana by Umberto Eco, Lavoisier in the Year One: The Birth of a New Science in an Age of Revolution by Madison Smartt Bell, and Meet the Beatles by Steven Stark. And the last column is ‘On Memoirs‘ by Kate Bolick. She writes about the difference between a memoir and a diary, covering Drawing From Life: The Journal as Art, an anthology edited by Jennifer New and A Field Guide to Getting Lost by Rebecca Solnit (which I am currently reading). It’s a thought-provoking piece.
That’s it folks. The rest is all kids’ books. I will save the scathing commentary for next week.