Happy Thursday! I’m on an animal kick, so today’s pick finds us in the most interesting barn around.
Title: Charlotte’s Web // E. B. White, published 1952
Memories: I remember wanting to be like Fern and totally empathizing with her when her dad wanted to kill the pig who became Wilbur. I also remember Charlotte being a motherly figure, and Templeton the rat was definitely vilified in my child brain.
Thoughts as an adult: This actually has many more layers than I ever recognized as a kid. First, Fern is much less present than I remembered, and she experiences a severe personality shift after her mother visits the doctor (something else I totally did not remember). Charlotte was a sassy spider – much more enjoyable than the mother I created in my mind – and Templeton really wasn’t so bad. There’s certainly some interesting messages about children, animals, and being unique.
Does it hold up? I actually think this one does. I enjoyed reading it as an adult, more than I expected, and it is one of those children’s books that considers the adult readers along with the kids. I appreciate Charlotte much more this time around and I empathized less with Fern now that I have gone through childhood. I think E.B. White created this really lovely world that will entertain kids and the adults reading to them.
Until next time, happy reading!