More on Children’s Books

Lately, I have been re-reading books that I had read when I was in grade school.  I finished two of my all time favorites, Tales of the Fourth Grade Nothing and its sequel Superfudge (both by Judy Blume), a few weeks ago.  I didn’t think I would enjoy them as much as I did when I was a kid, but on the contrary, I found them to be just as entertaining and funny.  And just yesterday, I finished A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L’Engle.  I’m not sure what compelled me to buy this book, because all I could remember about it was how confusing and difficult it was to read, back when I was in the fifth grade.  I guess my fascination with stories about time travel (although this story has little to do with time travel) inclined me into buying it when I was browsing through the Amazon.com site.

But having read through the story again, I am definately glad that I did get it, because it is truly a wonderful story.  The only thing that I didn’t like about it was some of the religious overtones, but it didn’t engulf the story, nor did it preach to you, so it was easy to just read around some of it.  And reading this as an adult, I can see why it was one of those books that didn’t really register too well with me as a kid.  It’s truly complicated, even for an adult with stuff like Einstein’s theory of relativity, theories about the fourth and fifth dimensions, speculations about the space and time continuum, and of course trying to visualize what a tesseract is, I probably wouldn’t consider it a children’s book,  but more a book for young adults. I could see however, parents reading this book to their children and explaining the difficult parts to them, which I hopefully plan to do with Haru someday.

Currently, I am reading another book that I vaguely remember reading as an assignment for school.  Its called Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes.  The strange thing is that I can recall very specific details with the book, like a diary entry where the main character, Charlie Gordon excessively used commas in his writings.  I guess I remember that part so well, because I use to do the same, and sometimes still do.  However, I can’t remember too much more about it other than a laborotory mouse dies at the end (which had a significant impact on the main character).

I guess I’m reading all of these childeren’s books in the hopes that in the future I can read them to Haru, and she’ll become interested in reading them on her own.  As I kid, I wasn’t much of a reader, other than manga’s from Japan, and the books that I was required to read at school.  I somewhat regret that now, because there are so many thing you can get from reading, even from a children’s book like the ones I’m reading.   So nowadays whenever possible I try to find a really good story regardless of it simplicity or complexity, and just read.  And the nice thing about living in this day and era is that whatever i don’t understand, I can find on the web.  And someday, I hope to write my own book.  I’ve attempted this several times since I was ten years old with no real great success.  But hopefully now I have the knowledge and skills to at least successfully complete one really good entertaining story, so that I can tell it to Haru when she is older, and have the pride of saying that I wrote it.

Haru in the kitchen with her mom.

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