Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Reading aloud: update!

As I mentioned, I'm trying to get back into reading to my child every evening after a break forced on me by a chest infection and cough. The book I chose (with his consent) was the first part of T. H. White's four-volume version of the story of Arthur, "The once and future king" - many years after having it read to me. "The sword in the stone" works as a book for children, although the whole four-part book is really a book for adults. This first part is a prelude to Malory's version of the Arthurian legend which which we are more familiar, and covers Arthur (The Wart)'s childhood and education.

Although written in 1938, it still works! Child jumped and was really shocked at Kay trying to pass himself off as having pulled the sword out of the stone, and enjoyed the parts of the story where Merlyn turns the Wart into different things. I doubt whether some of the allusions meant anything to him, but if/when he does come across Shakespeare some of the expressions at least will not be new! I was using Humphrey Carpenter's edition, not the version I read as a child, and the episode of the ants has been cut out, so when I next visit my mother I'm going to have to dig out the copy I first read and fill in the ant story (and work out why it was dropped - it's one of the bits I remember best from my own childhood!) This was so successful that we might be going to move on to what happened to Arthur next, but not using T.H. White's version as the rest of his tetralogy is a bit dark for children.

So far, so good!">View

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