When bedtime stories and headlines collide

It’s not often that I get the pleasure of reading books aloud to little ones.  The local nephews are either way too big (18 years old!) or way too little (7 months old).  There are no local nieces.  But, I am an occasional babysitter for two delightful little girls in the neighborhood that love toContinue reading “When bedtime stories and headlines collide”

Head and Heart

College was never really a question for me.  I was one of the “smart” kids, and my parents had gone to college.  Somehow, it wasn’t until I got to college and was knee deep in a women’s history class that I realized that this whole higher education for women was all relatively recent. Again, IContinue reading “Head and Heart”

A Tale of Two Emilys

It’s gotta be tough having a star for a sister.  You know you’re special, but how do you get your chance to shine?   If in some alternate universe, all of an author’s creations were to meet, would Emily Starr get in a cat fight with Anne Shirley?  Would Emily Webster be jealous of Betsy Ray? I’ve alwaysContinue reading “A Tale of Two Emilys”

Beyond the frontier

At my museum, we get a lot of school tours.  Sometimes, we even get survey responses or comments or samples of the lesson plans teachers use to prep for the field trip.  Generally speaking, this makes me very, very happy.  And generally speaking, I’m amazed to see how creative teachers are in connecting their textbooksContinue reading “Beyond the frontier”

Isn’t that romantic?

The Minnesota Post recently made a list of best Dynamic Duos–in movies, literature, history, etc.  And on it, much to the pleasure of the Betsy-Tacy Society and other BT fans is Betsy and Joe as “Literary Romantic Couples”–alongside some couples that are definitely not found in children’s literature. And though I certainly adore the factContinue reading “Isn’t that romantic?”

Wanting to know more. . .

A big part of the intrigue with kidlit history is the idea that there’s always more to discover.  These favorite stories are based on something within the author’s life, which should make the biographer or historian tingle with anticipation.  But, because these were written for children, these authors are rarely given the same consideration thatContinue reading “Wanting to know more. . .”

The best presents. . .

I admit it–my favorite part of Christmas just might be presents.  And it’s not so much the receiving (though don’t get me wrong–I do love receiving), but the giving.  It’s the joy in finding just the right thing, something that is more than the sum of its parts, and seeing the reaction when it hits its mark.Continue reading “The best presents. . .”

The beginning

Thus far, the vast majority of books that I’ve talked about here are ones I first read as a child.  I grew up with Anne and Jo and Laura.  But there’s one very important exception.  I didn’t discover Betsy Ray until I was an adult–halfway through college. Oh, I had heard about the Betsy-Tacy books, largelyContinue reading “The beginning”

Pilgrimages

This afternoon, while attempting to be domestic, I caught up with one of my favorite NPR programs, This American Life.  A few weeks ago, they aired a new episode called “The Book That Changed Your Life.”  How could I not listen?  The entire show was fantastic, but I was particularly intrigued by Act 4: LittleContinue reading “Pilgrimages”