“…there is really nothing to be done. You see, I know him from of old.” And so Rat, in Kenneth Grahams’s The Wind In the Willows, resigns himself to Toad’s new mania, and we happy readers, nod in agreement, for we too know him from of old. That is, if we have been one of the lucky ones. One of the lucky ones who met dear Toad years ago and who have never entirely quit his company. While there is a vast host of books written for children, many of which are a treasure for their intended audience, there is a particular type of children’s book that claims to be something more. I call it Ageless Children’s Literature. The books in this class are perfectly suited for children, and yet they satisfactorily captivate the adult reader. It is the type of book that one reads in childhood and carries in their heart into adulthood. The wisest place for these books, however, is not in one’s memory bank filed under childhood years, but a much more tangible place—one’s hands. The adult reader who has the pleasure of pulling Ageless Children’s Literature off the shelf for their own enjoyment, knows Toad of old and still to this day engages him in outrageous banter. Ageless Children’s Literature is meant for all of us, at all ages, and at all times.
© 2022 Joann Luke