Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Miss Read

A gorgeous sunny day for back to school. It makes me wish I was wandering the groves of academe too. But I also remember my very first class, at the ungodly hour of 8am. The unbelievably long lines for everything. The terror of knowing absolutely no one on a gigantic campus. And that was just nursery school!

The Dewey Divas have a good post about Back to School books, including Diva Anne's thoughts on more bucolic school times. She recommends two Canadian Prairie classics, Gabrielle Roy's Children of My Heart and Max Braithwaite's Why Shoot the Teacher. Both are set on the Prairies during the 1930s, focused on a lonely, young teacher.

But for true bucolic school day goodness, Anne recommends Miss Read and her gentle tales of country English village life, which revolve around the local school teacher. I remember Miss Read as one of those authors like Jean Plaidy or Catherine Cookson or R.F. Delderfield that filled shelf after shelf in my small hometown library when I was young, hiding all the good authors like Isaac Asimov or Frederick Forsyth! But I know several people who would agree with Diva Anne:
"A friend introduced me to these wonderful, warm stories of village life .... They are wonderful books that you can pick up in moments when you just want a quiet read. The action is set around daily living and the personalities of the community and the children in the school house. You feel like they are neighbours once you get hooked. The muddy boots in the cloakroom, school lunches, the first snow flakes, Christmas parties and jumble sales. Treat yourself."


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