Here again are a few more books we have been reading or listening to:
Puck of Pook’s Hill by Kipling — Obviously, this is an older book. We read it in conjunction with out study of the Middle Ages. The premise is that some English children meet Puck, the last of the fairy folk left in the country, who introduces them to various figures who have lived in the area throughout the centuries. Each of these people tells the children their story so that they get a sense of the history of their country and their own place. It was well-done and my kids seemed to enjoy the stories though it is harder listening (or reading) than some other books.
The Magician’s Elephant by Kate DiCamillo — My older daughter in particular has enjoyed a number of DiCamillo’s books. And I think my kids enjoyed listening to this one. But I was not thrilled by it. Perhaps I was affected by the fact that the story hinges on a sorcerer’s prophecy coming true (I have been thinking lot about the occult lately), but I just didn’t think this was a great story. There is not a lot of plot, and while I don’t usually mind magic in stories, there was something about the way it worked in this one that put me off.
Mistress Masham’s Repose by T.H. White — This is a real gem. It is something of a sequel to Gulliver’s Travels and so it is helpful to have some familiarity with that story. We had listened to Gulliver some time ago in the car. It was hard listening for the children, but they seem to have remembered enough of the story to make diving into this book easy. Mistress Masham’s Repose is much easier than Gulliver was. The premise is that some Lilliputians are surviving on an island on an estate in England. To complicate things, the estate is the family inheritance of a young orphan girl who is ruled over by her very harsh and unfriendly governess and guardian, the latter being the local vicar. I can’t emphasize enough what a wonderful book this is.
Until next time