February is I Love To Read month, and all month we are talking about books which we at the library branches have loved to read. A Winkler staff member has recommended The Children’s Book by A.S. Byatt. This book spent many weeks on bestseller lists.
Set in the late 1800s against a backdrop of coal mines and child labour, this book spans a quarter century including the aftermath of World War I. The main character, Olive, her husband and their many children live the privileged life of the upper class. Olive writes “Grimm” like fantasy tales for each of her children. She is a charming, successful author, and ultimately the financial support of the family. Sprinkled through are anarchists, financiers, Fabians, puppeteers, New Women, suffragettes, soldiers and philanderers.
The interjection of fairy tales with the life events of these interesting characters gives this book a very rich appeal, and we highly recommend it.