“The tighter you squeeze, the less you have.”–Thomas Merton
Review and Comments
The story of The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier is one of darkness and mystery. Set in VIctorian England, Molly and Kip have set out looking for work and are accepted by the Windsor family. The new job is brings on a terror that the two children were not expecting.
When Molly first arrives at the home of the Windsors, she immediately notices how dirty it is and how it looks as though it hasn’t been taken care of in ages. Slowly, she realizes that something is amiss. The old pictures of the family show them as younger looking, healthy and vibrant. Now they look pale, sickly, and their eyes look lifeless. Continue reading Hold on Tight: A Review of ‘The Night Gardener’
“Never bother about people’s opinions. Be obedient to truth. For with humble obedience, you will never be disturbed.”–Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta
Suggested Grade Levels:
Review and Thoughts:
The story of Strega Nona may sound familiar because it is a retelling of a familiar folktale. It can be compared to such stories as “The Porridge Pot”, a German folktale, or even The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. In this version Tomie dePaola retells the story with an Italian setting and flavor.
The people of Calabria frequently visit Strega Nona , Grandma Witch, because she helps them with problems using her very special potions. She conjures remedies for their difficulties , and everyone is happy and satisfied with the results of their visits to her.
At this time in her life however, Strega Nona feels she is getting old and needs help with household chores. A citizen of Calabria named Big Anthony applies for and gets the job even though he is known as someone who doesn’t pay attention. Strega Nona explains the list of chores he will have to do. She also tells him that the one thing he must not touch is her pasta pot. Continue reading The Price of Disobedience: A Review of ‘Strega Nona’