The Letter for the King

A few months ago, my dear friend Tanya Arnold asked me to consider reading and reviewing The Song of Seven by Tonke Dragt. We have very similar tastes in books, and she was delighting in the intelligent quirkiness of it. I started it and genuinely enjoyed it. I have some reading promises to fulfill first,…

Please Don’t Eat the Daises

“We are being very careful with our children.They’ll never have to pay a psychiatrist twenty-five dollars an hour to find out why we rejected them. We’ll tell them why we rejected them. Because they are impossible, that’s why…You take Christopher – and you may; he’s a slightly used eight-year-old… I watch him from the kitchen…

My Life in France

In 2015, my husband and I watched the film Julie and Julia. I thought that “Julie” was whiny and unlikable. Despite all of Amy Adams’s efforts to make Julie adorable, I thought that the real life character being portrayed on the screen was dull and forgettable. But, I loved her concept. I thought that her…

Anne of the Island

In this review, I lament how disappointed I was in Anne of Avonlea after having loved Anne of Green Gables so much. I am happy to report that I found Anne of the Island to be a vast improvement on Anne of Avonlea. Still not as good as the original, it is a worthy follow-up…

Lucy Maud Montgomery

I would like to think that L.M. Montgomery needs no introduction.   There, that was short and sweet! I do believe most of us have at least heard of Anne of Green Gables, the book, the character, that made Montgomery famous.  It is difficult now to believe that after several rejections from publishers, Montgomery stuck…

Something like Tolkien’s Leaf Mould

This spring Diane, Jennifer Halverson and I re-read one of my top ten favorite books: Sir Walter Scott’s Ivanhoe. A funny thing happened in this reading that I was not expecting. As a child, I feasted on the 1982 made-for-t.v. Ivanhoe movie featuring Anthony Andrews, James Mason, Olivia Hussey, and John Rhys-Davies. When I say…

Shiloh

I am not a fan of surprises. I especially don’t care for surprises in my children’s reading. I take the sacred vocation of being my child’s first and foremost teacher very seriously and I am extremely careful about what kind of  intellectual and emotional foods I am giving them to eat. As a lover of…

Charlie the Lonesome Cougar

I have been packing around a paperback copy of Charlie the Lonesome Cougar for almost 50 years now.  The title is from a Disney movie that came out in 1967.  I may have watched the movie on a Sunday evening “Wonderful World of Disney.”  Perhaps at a drive-in theater!  In 1968, Scholastic Books published a…

The Incredible Journey

The podcast version of the review can be found here. Today I am bawling into my laundry. My son read The Incredible Journey by Shelia Bunford a few weeks ago and begged me to read it. As I am writing this, I am ignoring the stack of notes I have from ten other books which…

An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving

We are big fans of Louisa May Alcott here at Plumfield and Paideia. The “Plumfield” portion of our name comes from her iconic Jo March books. While Alcott notably wrote many full length novels for children and young readers, she also wrote many endearing short stories. An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving is one of them. Thanks…

The Importance of Being Earnest

I love stories. While a student at Hillsdale College, I was a theater minor. Between the long hours I logged as Stage Manager and then House Manager, and my appreciation for the art of great storytelling, theater seemed to be a sensible minor to attach to my Philosophy/Religion major. Interestingly, part of why I became…

Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm

No talent is wholly wasted unless its owner chooses to hide it in a napkin. In 1868, Louisa May Alcott published her most famous novel, Little Women, featuring four sisters and their varied experiences of growing into womanhood. The next year she published another beautiful story of the same ilk. An Old Fashioned Girl seemed…

The Princess Bride

In 1973 William Goldman penned a quirky but endearing story about a beautiful princess, a mysterious pirate, a lovable giant, a Spanish swordsman, a cunning Sicilian, a six-fingered villain, a duplicitous prince, and an out-of-work miracle man. Perhaps a little bit like A.A.  Milne’s Once On A Time, The Princess Bride is tough to categorize…

Brideshead Revisited

The podcast version of this review can be found here. “Read and re-read. Re-reading we always find a new book.” ~C.S. Lewis, Of Other Worlds: Essays and Stories, “On Stories” (1947) I have always been a big fan of re-reading. While most good books can support many readings, certain excellent books almost seem to require…

Contact

“I think if we ever reach the point where we think we thoroughly understand who we are and where we came from, we will have failed. I think this search does not lead to a complacent satisfaction that we know the answer, nor an arrogant sense that the answer is before us and we need…