Sunday, November 25, 2012

Not Just for Children

“A children's story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children's story in the slightest.” 
 C.S. Lewis

I love a good children's story.  When I was a child, I would long for the lands in my books.  It did not have to be magical, but it most often was.  I could escape within the confines of a story- so specific, yet infinite.  Even now, as I write this, I long for more than the ordinary.  I anticipate the moments my kids begin to grasp this feeling- when I begin to see the imaginations begin to soar.  I have seen Elliot's wings spread out and I have seen the first running steps, but he has not gotten wind yet.  This will come soon, and I cannot wait to encourage him in this.

I am not one of those book lovers who hate movies, but I definitely see why the screen can take away from a child's potential.  A screen gives you the image in a lazy way- it does a lot of the work for you.  It is not bad, but for the child- not yet impressed upon, it can discourage the use of the imagination.  It sees for you, but a book?  A book lets you see and the sight keeps adulthood at bay, until- like a rising sun, the day breaks.

This is precisely why a children's story must be able to be enjoyed by all.  It keeps us adults balanced and it keeps us creative.  The world is a better place when adults can see the magic in a child's book.  It keeps us connected.  It reminds us that, we too, were children once and that not unlike them, we saw other worlds and experienced the joy of flight.

Here are some books I recommend:

I love this book.  Narnia is the definition of a wonderful children's book.

Coraline is a dark book and not necessarily a children's book, although it reads like one.  It was also made into a movie.  Neil Gaiman is an excellent author.

And the ultimate? Peter Pan.  This is the best of the best.  Do not even think of the Disney movie.  It is full of quotes and the story is so fantastically unique.

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