Jack Johnson: Upside Down

curious-georgeCurious George was one of my favorite children’s books series. A monkey who gets in and out of trouble? A monkey who, strangely enough, lacks a tail? Now that is something a child can identify with. The series was written and drawn by Hans A. Rey and Margret Rey, Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany who fled from Paris to Brazil in 1940 and began writing these books in 1941. Forget the TV program (PBS) and the film – the books have a whole different dimension. But I must admit: Jack Johnson did a really nice job on the songs for the movie. He connects up with the gentle melancholy that is buried at the root of this amazing story of friendship between the Man in the Yellow Hat and a chimpanzee. Continue reading Jack Johnson: Upside Down

Margaret Atwood: Moral Disorder

atwood-md-bookcoverSince it’s summertime, I thought maybe you’re looking for something to read. I’m going to read you a selection from a book that I’ve been reading and thought might help you make a choice on your summer reading list. So here is my tip no. 1:

Listen to an excerpt of the first story in Moral Disorder, “The Bad News” Continue reading Margaret Atwood: Moral Disorder

Maurice Sendak turns 80

Maurice Sendak, writer and illustrator of immortal children’s books, turns 80 today. He finds that children’s experiences in particular—joy and discovery, fear and suffering—are among the purest and strongest ones there are. And children recognize that he is truly talking to them. For me, “Where the Wild Things Are” picked up where “Beauty and the Beast” left off. In Sendak’s cosmos, monsters are moody, melancholy beasts that a child can tame and overcome. Max’ order, “Let the wild rumpus start!” is quite possibly the best invitation to a party ever. (Sendak has fans at Lesekreis.) Sendak is still going strong…

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Pop-up book 2007: Mommy?
Continue reading Maurice Sendak turns 80

Zoning in

Christmas is a great time for reading. Thanks to Fabian for passing on John Coetzee’s “Diary of a Bad Year” to me. He found the book hard to read because it’s written as a journal kept by three different people in parallel, so each page is divided into separate sections and voices that continue through the book and make the reader jump from one perspective to another. Continue reading Zoning in