>"Janet! Donkeys!"

>Happy Monday, everyone. Seduced by persuader par excellence Barbara Bader, I spent much of my weekend enthralled in David Copperfield (a la audiobook). Why did I dodge it until now? (Is anyone up for a game of--what is it called?--that reverse-snob competition where you name books you haven't read but are positive everyone else has? In a children's book version, I would make my opening gambit with something by Rosemary Sutcliff.) My acquaintance with Dickens is very spotty, not much beyond Great Expectations (in 7th grade) and "Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol." I think I was afraid David Copperfield would be alternatingly dismal and jolly, but the compass of tone is fully rounded, and the story is most agreeably eventful, with both plot and tone turning on a dime. I'm up to David's meeting his formidable aunt--so quite a ways to go, a happy prospect.
Roger Sutton
Roger Sutton
Roger Sutton has been the editor in chief of The Horn Book, Inc, since 1996. He was previously editor of The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books and a children's and young adult librarian. He received his M.A. in library science from the University of Chicago in 1982 and a B.A. from Pitzer College in 1978. Follow him on Twitter: @RogerReads.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.


Andy Laties

>Well -- ya caught me. I never got beyond "Swann's Way". (I do sell the graphic novel version of Proust though...I believe it caused a scandal in France upon release.)

(Incidentally, the other day, in the book "The Sexual Labyrinth of Nikolai Gogol", I stumbled across this fascinating and possibly debatable statement about Proust: the author is discussing Proust's literary approach to the need to keep his sexual orientation secret and yet write emotionally honest fiction. "When Marcel Proust found himself faced with the same problem he resorted to the strategem of disguising certain of his originally male characters as females, so that his hero could be involved emotionally not with Gilbert, but with Gilberte, not with a heterosexual man named Albert, but with a lesbian named Albertine.")

Whether it's true or not it makes entertaining literary criticism.

Posted : Apr 05, 2006 02:58


Jane

>NOW NOW Rindawriter, you have stepped on a major toe. I am a TUCK EVERLASTING fanatic.


Hands--how many here have actually read REMEMBRANCES OF THINGS PAST?

How many have read Maia Wochahosky's LIFE AND DEATH OF A BRAVE BULL? It's Hemmingway lite, and turns on the flawed premise that the bull is thrilled to go bravely to his death. (And how does one spell her name anyway?)

Jane

Posted : Apr 04, 2006 11:32


rindawriter

>Dear me, perhaps I can drag in at fourth or sixth place, here...I have never read "Jonathan Livingston Seagull" nor "Tuck Everlasting," and I confess that I have no desire either to ever read either one...but I like "The Little Prince," even if it's not a book for children.

Posted : Apr 04, 2006 05:53


Roger Sutton

>Jane--I read The Little Prince in high school, where we were all taken by its "wisdom." (Like Unitarians sermonizing on The Giving Tree.) I don't think either book is really a children's book, but both get their status by appearing as such. I was going to say that no one would take them seriously if published as adult books but then I remembered Jonathan Livingston Seagull . . .

Posted : Apr 04, 2006 02:23


Jane

>I resisted Jane Austen for years. Finally two years ago, I read PRIDE & PREJUDICE on the train between Edinburgh and London and return. And loved it.

Or at least was near to the end when a man several seats ahead fell over dead. Two EMTs and a doctor on the train worked on him in the aisle for twenty minutes. When they gave up, they covered him with a white linen tablecloth from the dining car. Another ten minutes later and we came to a station where he was offloaded.

May have spoiled the rest of Austen for me forever. Certainly ruined the mood.

Jane

PS Never able to get through the tweeness of "The Little Prince." Does that make me a terrible children's book person?

Posted : Apr 04, 2006 09:21


View More Comments

RELATED 

Community matters. Stay up to date on breaking news, trends, reviews, and more.

Get access to reviews of books, ebooks, and more