When you see more pictures than words you get instantly happy? This one is for you: there is nothing wrong in reading children books.
I will start this article by thanking the marvelous nurse rhyme by
Adam Mansbach “Go the F**K to Sleep”, if it were not for this book I would
probably not have written this article. (Please see my previous article on
Once upon a while, I was perusing the bookstore of a museum (don’t you just love those?! they store all sorts of things, cards, pens, cool note books, gadgets, and well yes books) with a friend – actually the friend was babysitting my “can we please go to the bookstore now” moment. I honestly think they are the best part of an exhibition.
Nostalgia aside: I started packing on children’s books (after spending a reasonable time smelling, reading and surveying the whole lot) on my way to the cashier. My friend must have been thrown back and asked: what are you doing with those “things”? My hands were full of books on the letter A, a book that told the story of an elephant that was always happy and so on. I think I even found one on “feeling sad” explained to kids.
My spontaneous answer was: “Because they make things look easier, it makes me happy”.
Going back on that thought, I realize how things got reverse over time. When I was a kid, I couldn’t wait to get to Flaubert, but my mom said I had to finish all children books available at the library first. What do you think I did? At ten years old I was allowed to read Mme Bovary, and btw at 5 years old I was already circling the big news on the papers.
I am now two decades ahead and although I appreciate literature, love to write, there is something absolutely compelling in children books. Yes, they do make things sound easier, even the bad things. Everything always ends well. The happy elephant stays happy, Harry Potter wins over the dark forces, the princess marries the frog who was actually a prince, hansel and gretel don’t get cooked up by the witch and so on. No matter how hard the circumstances are everything gets adjusted.
They lived happily ever after.
Exactly: ever after??? No death? Maybe some old people (like 500 years old) in the story, but the children, the young heroes live happily ever after.
It all sounds so promising and I so wish I could go back to that feeling of “happily ever after” until the monster of growing up comes along. That one is harder to beat than the witch of Oz.
I advice to all adults a good read, children books should be for adults as well. Happy and Sad explained in capital letters with no buts, maybes, and because.
0-5 year olds:
A Bit Lost by Chris Haughton
Anna Kemp’s Rhinos don’t eat pancakes
The Queen of France by Tim Wadham
Good Little Wolf by Nadia Shireen
Next time will take it to 6-10 year olds. Until then, enjoy your newly found childhood.
By Acelya Yonac