Muchos Livros Para Niños

I’ve been thinking about the upcoming end of my internship and heading back to school and the direction of my life and my upcoming marriage and my health and my meditation practice and after a bit I think I burned out the clutch on my brain.

Instead of the 800 important things I had on my plate for the evening, I spent the last five hours reformatting chunks of a 600 page compendium of interesting literature.

I’ve been attempting to thieve some background reading on sociology to get ready for the ASA meeting, but it turns out that the thieves have tens of thousands of books of which nines of thousands are science fiction.

After screwing around for a while, I happened upon a reading list on Scribd (which has about as many books as the IRC channel) that is a combination of book lists from Harvard, Oxfam and a couple other places. The rote cleaning and proofing turned out to be much more relaxing than actually dealing with stuff I needed to do.

My hours of cleaning got the XML to validate, but not much more. Of the couple sections I did finish, I thought my many fecund friends might enjoy the selection of children’s literature. (The adventurous might also be interested in the ALA‘s 100 most challenged books.)

There’s about 60 suggestions total, so I’ll just include a few as a sample:

  • Adams, Richard. Watership Down (1972)

    Long, allegorical novel about rabbits; occasional turgidities offset by strong story-line. Adam’s later books are full of detailed violence, could be a test for the squeamish. (10+)

  • Aiken, Joan. Tales of Arabel’s Raven (1974)

    Slapstick adventures of ordinary little girl and pet raven in contemporary London. Expert comedy for the 7+ set; older children (11+) may prefer her densely-plotted historical novels (Go Saddle the Sea; The Wolves of Willoughby Chase) or her collections of short stories (A Harp of Fishbones; The Kingdom under the Sea, etc).

  • Alcott, Louisa May. Little Women (1868)

    One of the great progenitors of the family story. Alcott writes from her own life with a sincerity and warmth which transcend the often pious particularity. (10+)

  • Almedingen, E. M. Ellen (1971)

    Ellen Polotratzky, the author’s grandmother, is the central character; five other biographical novels complete the sequence, and build a fascinating picture of pre-Revolutionary Russia. (12+) Also: A Candle at Dusk; The Knights of the Golden Table, etc

  • Andersen, Hans Christian. Fairy Tales (1835)

    Among the plethora of available translations, two may be singled out: Corrin’s in Ardizzone’s Hans Andersen (1978, illustrated by Edward Ardizzone); and Haugaard’s Hans Andersen: His Classic Fairy Tales (1976, illustrated by Michael Foreman). (6+)

  • Atwater, F. and R. Mr. Popper’s Penguins (1938)

    Where do you keep a flock of penguins in a city apartment? Naturally, in the bath. So how do you take a bath? Splendid, deadpan humour, like children’s Thurber. (8+)

  • Baum, Frank L. The Wonderful World of Oz (1900)

    This famous century-inaugurating story was followed by several others by Baum and dozens of others by inferior copiers. Sentimental and foolish at times, but the characters of Dorothy and her loyal friends are warm and — with Judy Garland’s help — unforgettable. (10+)

  • Bawden, Nina Carrie’s War (1973)

    World War II evacuee children in Welsh mining community. Strong on period detail — and that includes period attitudes, adult emotions seen through a child’s eyes. (10+) Also: A Handful of Thieves; The Runaway Summer, etc

  • Blume, Judy. American, 1938– . Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret. Rec: Time

  • Boston, Lucy M. The Children of Green Knowe (1954)

    Boston’s own historic house is central to all her Green Knowe stories. In this one, Tolly from the present and the ghost-children from the house’s past share adventures and troubles in a time-free world. (8+) Also: Castle of Yew, etc

  • Botkin, B. A. American, 19011975. A Treasury of Mississippi River Folktales. Rec: Counterpunch NF

  • Brothwell, D.R. (ed). The Rise of Man(1976)

    Superb account for children of man’s evolution from fossil evidence to remains of great civilizations. Demanding text is offset by the clarity and simplicity of the illustrations (drawings and diagrams are especially good, and well-captioned). In the same series, and of the same quality: The Universe (Kerrod); The Prehistoric Work/(Sheehan); The Living World(Chinery). (12+)

For the rest, you can visit the list.

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