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  1. Alexander, Lloyd — The Black Cauldron
  2. Anthony, Piers — Letters to Jenny
  3. Cooper, Susan — Over Sea, Under Stone
  4. Proulx, Annie — Close Range: Wyoming Stories
  5. Kincaid, Jamaica — Lucy
  6. Christie, Agatha — The Unexpected Guest
  7. Dick, Philip K. — Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
  8. Cooper, Susan — The Dark Is Rising
  9. Cooper, Susan — Greenwitch
  10. Shaffer, Peter — Amadeus
  11. Anonymous — Go Ask Alice
  12. Cooper, Susan — The Grey King
  13. Martin, Steve — Shopgirl
  14. Cooper, Susan — Silver on the Tree
  15. Gaiman, Neil — Stardust
  16. Gaiman, Neil — Coraline
  17. Le Guin, Ursula — A Wizard of Earthsea
  18. Le Guin, Ursula — The Tombs of Atuan
  19. Le Guin, Ursula — The Farthest Shore
  20. Le Guin, Ursula — Tehanu
  21. Merton, Thomas — The Seven Storey Mountain: An Autobiography of Faith
  22. Alexander, Lloyd — The Castle of Llyr
  23. Zelazny, Roger — Lord of Light
  24. Card, Orson Scott — Ender's Game
  25. Clarke, Arthur C. — Childhood's End
  26. Grahame, Kenneth — The Wind in the Willows
  27. Dahl, Roald — James and the Giant Peach
  28. Lewis, C.S. — Out of the Silent Planet
  29. Lewis, C.S. — Perelandra
  30. Milne, A.A. — Winnie-the-Pooh

With all the upheaval in my life the past few months, it's hard not to allow myself to become a little cynical. Maybe this is why I've been reading so many children's books lately. I guess I'm looking for something to help me restore my faith in people. I like to believe that most people are good at the core, not heartless bitches who care only for themselves. Reading these children's books helps keep me from slipping into the latter mode of thought.

I don't remember whether I read Winnie-the-Pooh on my own as a child or had it read to me, but obviously one or both happened. These stories were all familiar, in the way an old friend from elementary school in Panamá would be: I recognized them, knew I had once known them better, and recalled all sorts of childhood associations.

Everybody, adult and child alike, should be acquainted with these stories. They are so simple and yet so beautifully told, infused with so much warmth. It was so nice to become reacquainted with Pooh and Piglet and Rabbit and Owl and Eeyore and Kanga and Roo. I wondered where Tigger was until I peaked in The House at Pooh Corner's table of contents and saw he's just a little late, that's all. This actually kindled a desire to write stories about some of my friends: Gorilla and Panda and Teddy and Pengui and Isabella Boobs and Testudo and Elephant. (I used to have a lovely picture of the bunch of them, but I either never scanned it in or have lost it forever.)

It's hard to resist the urge to dive right into The House at Pooh Corner next, but I've decided to set that aside until I feel the cynicism making inroads again. For now, my spirit feels sufficiently restored.


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 6th, 2006 09:54 pm (UTC)
I had the same experience -- I thought I hadn't read the real Winnie-the-Pooh, because even though I knew the characters and such I had no memory of reading it, until I read it as an adult, and realized that I knew them all. I think that yes, it probably was read to me and that's why I don't have a memory of reading it.

My parents would have been a lot bigger on reading aloud to us kids, except that we all read so early and so voraciously that we got impatient with it -- we could read so much faster ourselves. So I don't have much in the way of memories of being read to. I know that I was, though.

I keep wanting to make a "Which Winnie-the-Pooh Character Are You?" quiz on OkCupid. I'd want to do it right, though, not just throw something together, so I put it off. Wouldn't it be adorable, though? Except I'm sure I'd be Eeyore, unfortunately.
Jul. 7th, 2006 12:20 pm (UTC)
Love the icon! :)

I'd be interested in taking that test if you ever do make it. I wonder which poo character I am. Maybe Owl? Except he's so serious. Or Pooh? Except he has redeeming qualities I lack. Perhaps I'm Milne, whom you have to count as a character.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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