Thursday, June 3, 2010

Favourite Childhood Book

Several times in the last couple of weeks, I have been asked what my favourite book as a child was. Although I could easily answer: All of them! (because I was an avid reader who devoured almost everything to be had in book form), there are a couple of books that stand out.

One is a novel titled: The Nine Questions by Edward Fenton. I still have my copy of this wonderful book, given to me by my grandparents on my 10th birthday.

It's the story of Willie Boy who wakes up one morning and is told he must leave the old woman who has cared for him most of his life. She gives him an ancient watch, a tattered hunting cap, a tarnished silver whistle and a warm feather bag — items she has kept for him since he was brought to her door as an infant, years ago, by a frightened young woman.

The old woman tells him it is time for him to seek his father and his fortune in the Weaver's Country, far away. Willie Boy sets off on a journey that takes him through many magical and fantastical places, where he always encounters a dark and troubling underside. At each place, he faces an evil villan who changes identity throughout the story and relentlessly tries to take Willie Boy's possessions from him.

Willie Boy makes friends with lovely Gabriella and a group of kind animals who come to his rescue when he is in danger. They travel with him to a foreboding castle in Weaver's Country, where Willy Boy must answer the Interrogator's Nine Questions that will decide his fate.

Wow! What a great story. It's a compelling mix of magic, realism and suspense — a perfect book for a 10 year old avid reader. A big thank you to my grandparents, who always knew the right gifts to give me.

Now that I've taken the book off the shelf to look at, I plan to read it again. Fingers crossed the story has held up over time.


1 comment:

Dianne said...

My favourite was Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O'Dell. I reread it a few years ago to see if it was the time or the book that entranced me and decided it was both!