Sorry for the radio silence from this end. The house has been sitting on my head. It's a big house. And apparently my computer is jealous and upset that I'm no longer paying any attention to it -- it's moving v-e-r-y s-l-o-w-l-y (talk about passive-aggressive) and making ominous noises.
A couple of quick reading notes before I sign off to do back-ups of our photos and videos:
1) Inspired by Lizzie Skurnick's Fine Lines column on The Girl With Silver Eyes, I reread the book the other night. I'd enjoyed it as a child but it's not the book about a magic girl with strange eyes I thought it was. There's another one out there. The girl I'm thinking of is wandering in the woods and suddenly finds herself transported back in time or to another dimension. Something medieval-ish with castles and battles and a cute boy. I'm pretty sure silver eyes (or maybe gold ones, something metallic at any rate) featured prominently in this one, too. If anyone remembers it, please do let me know.
2) I'm two thirds of the way through Henry Roth's Call It Sleep and I can say that it definitely belongs on the list of books that best evoke the experience of childhood for adults -- but perhaps not in a good way. Poor little David, the narrator, is terrified and/or bewildered most of the time and it rings all too true. Great for adults who've forgotten how hard it is to be little. Incidentally, I want my bedroom to look like the cover of the paperback issue I own:
Except without a giant "Henry Roth" inscribed across the ceiling. I'm not sure how I'm going to achieve this but so far I've painted the walls a slate blue colour. I'm thinking I might need some of this photographer's work to hang on the walls. Hmm. Have you ever been inspired by a book -- either its story or its cover -- to decorate a room? I think the topic might need its own blog.
3) Picked up a copy of Christina Hardyment's The Canary-Coloured Cart at the library. I was actually looking for her book about the history of child-rearing advice but they didn't have it. So instead, I am enjoying this tale of her family's travels across Europe in search of places featured in children's literature. It's like Joan Bodger's How the Heather Looks, only with a wider geographical base. I think we need to do a children's literature inspired travel book based in North America. What do you think, Sara O'Leary? Or does one already exist?
4) And I've got a bunch of half-formed thoughts about Paul Bloom's excellent Descartes' Baby: How the Science of Child Development Explains What Makes Us Human, particularly in relation to My Kid Could Paint That, a documentary about the child painter Marla Olmstead and her parents. But they'll have to wait because Luke is standing her beside me saying, "I'm hungry, I'm firsty, and I haf to pee." And frankly, so do I.