In which Annie (high school teacher, mother of two young girls and a younger boy) and her aunt Deborah (children's bookseller, mother of two young women in their 20s) discuss children's books and come up with annotated lists.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The strongest woman in the world

Dear Annie,

Reading with one's children just keeps on giving us all little magic moments.  Here's a text conversation I had yesterday with soon-to-be-21 Mona, who's living in San Francisco this summer:
   Mona: A homeless man called me Pippi Longstocking today.  I ignored him but he did get points for children's book knowledge.
   Me: Love it! Although Pippi's hair is red [Mona's a blonde].
   Mona: I know -- I think it's because my hair was in a braid.  He also said something about the strongest woman in the world which could have been a reference too.
   Me: Picks up horse with one hand!
   Mona: Very impressive!
And here's a quote from  Pippi Goes on Board: a hypothetical stranger is watching Pippi's odd living arrangements from her front gate:
If the stranger stayed after Pippi had said good night and gone away from the gate, and if he saw Pippi go up on the porch and pick up the horse in her strong arms and carry him out into the garden, he would certainly rub his eyes and wonder if he were dreaming.
   "What an extraordinary child this is!" he would say to himself.  "Why, she can actually lift that horse!  She's the most extraordinary child I've ever seen!"
   He'd be right, too.  Pippi was the most extraordinary child -- in that town, at any rate.  There may be more extraordinary children in other places, but in that little town there was no one to compare with Pippi Longstocking.  And nowhere in the world, in that town or any other, was there anyone half so strong as she was.
first edition (in Swedish)
 Here's to extraordinary children everywhere.



1 comment:

  1. My kiddo and I are reading Pippi Longstocking together right now -- it's such a treat!