Feb. 9th, 2005

wonderlanded: (Mary smiling)
I can't think of a group of people better qualified to help me with my current project.

I know a young girl, aptly named Alice. Her parents and mine are great friends; I used to babysit her when she was a tiny, I coached her debating team the first year she ever debated, and she's always been a part of my life.

She's a gorgeous, eager, effervescent, brilliant, strangely knowing and old-fashioned girl. I absolutely adore her.

I've introduced her to many books over the years -- the Seven Little Australians books, which I think she loves as much as I do, and Ballet Shoes and more school-stories than her parents care to remember.

She's fourteen now, which as many of you probably remember is a tricky time to be a reader, caught in some odd limbo of not knowing what to read first, or what to read next, with a bewildering galaxy of books stretching ahead into the future, and so you plunge headfirst into Tolstoy and become utterly discouraged and confused and think yourself the stupidest girl in the world.

I think the troubling business of being a reader in a world full of books must be weighing heavily on her mind, because her parents have just paid me the enormous and marvellous compliment of asking me to put together a list of books I think she ought to read, particularly as I won't be here to press books upon her in person.

I have quite a decent list on its way, but I know I'm forgetting things, or that there are wonderful books that saved you in your adolescence that haven't crossed my path.

Will you help?


wonderlanded: (Default)

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