Friday, July 10, 2009

New editions of The Wind in the Willows

The Wind in the Willows has always been one of my favorite books, although admittedly, the last time I looked at it, reading it aloud to a young daughter, I was a little struck by how odd some of it is. But mostly it was wonderful. Now there's two new annotated editions. The NY Times reports on them.

NYT: The years between 1900 and the outbreak of World War I, it has often been remarked, were a golden age in Britain for the writing of children’s books... In hindsight these books seem to reflect the long, sunny afternoon of Edwardian England, a moment of arrested innocence before the outbreak of the Great War. Many of them also yearn for a rural, preindustrial England that was already vanishing. Part of their appeal is that they’re nostalgic, as we are, for childhood itself, or for a simpler past that seems to embody childhood virtue. More...

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