Monday, June 18, 2012

elizabeth the queen by sally bedell smith

it was really fun to read this just before the diamond jubilee celebrations. i had little knowledge about queen elizabeth ii and thought of her as stoic and out of touch. how wrong i was! this book gave me such respect for her intelligence and dependability.

the book covers her life and reign up through 2011. it seemed daunting when i started out (over 500 pages of biography!), but it proved to be very readable. i learned a lot about the commonwealth that is so important to her, her relationships with the many prime ministers, her skills at diplomacy, and her devotion to her country.

peter and the starcatchers by dave barry and ridley pearson

this has been on my to-read list for quite some time. i love children's literature, and i love, love peter pan. the book was a fun, lighthearted read, but i didn't love it.

the story was born when one of the author's daughters asked how peter pan and captain hook met. 

it tells the story of how peter became the boy who never grew up, where tinkerbell came from, how captain hook got his hook, how mermaids came to be, the location of never land, and the true substance of pixie dust. 

it was a fun book, and i'm sure it would be delightful to read as a child. but it lacked the depth and moral message that i really value in children's literature. i know it's the first in a series of book, but i'm not to sure i'd make a point to read the others. however, i have a sneaking suspicion that the series could only improve. there was so much to set up in this first book it lost some of the whimsical quality that draws me to peter pan. i'd be interested to hear other people's thoughts on the series.

i am, however, quite interested in seeing the broadway production of peter and the starcatcher. i hear great things about it.