So I actually read a lot of books, which is something you probably know if you’ve read my journal at all.
But what I don’t tell you about is all the children’s books I read. We go through about 10-15 books a week between girl1 and girl2.
And there are good ones and bad ones. Girl1 is currently addicted to the Daisy Meadows Fairy series. We’ve gone through rainbow, jewel, and weather fairies, and now are into the pet fairies series. They’re okay, kind of blah and predictable, but the girls like them.
And the two main characters, Rachel and Kirsty, beat the goblins through bravery and cleverness, so I’m into that.
But we just came across an author (translated by Kjersti Board) named Pija Lindenbaum, and I wanted to make a note of her because her books are AWESOME.
Or at least I think so. If you look at amazon reviews, lots of people don’t get her. For example in Bridget and the Gray Wolves, wherein our biracial heroine, Bridget, faces fear at daycare when she gets lost and meets up with some gray wolves, some of the reviewers take the book literally.
They complain that they don’t want to encourage their kids to get lost when they go on field trips at daycare.
Which utterly misses the point of why I LOVE these Bridget books. In each book, Pija Lindenbaum puts her heroine, Bridget, into some real troubled situation that little kids find themselves: nervous at daycare, bored at the family beach vacation, etc. etc, and uses fantastical elements (wolves that eat mud soup and need to be rescued from trees, or sheep on a beach) that just…barely…skirt the edge of what a child might think of during imaginary play, and uses that situation for Bridget to work through the problem.
Which is, in essence, what I think fantastic elements are good at. Letting us work through problems related to being human and our every day lives from one step back. That all important one step back.
And I think the third person omniscient POV lends a hint of dry humor to the book, unlike some of the reviewers, because who couldn’t connect with Bridget when she’s facing all the same problems we all faced at her age?