Saturday, January 24, 2015

Stories of My Life by Katherine Paterson - ADVISABLE

Paterson, Katherine Stories of My Life.  AUTOBIOGRAPHY.  Dial (Penguin), 2014.  $18.  Content: PG.

Katherine Paterson is well known for her award winning books such as Bridge to Terabithia, The Great Gilly Hopkins, and Lyddie.  She has received many awards, including two Newbery awards, two National Book awards, and the Laura Ingalls Wilder award.  In this autobiography she shares with us her life from childhood to her latest challenge of losing her husband to a rare neurological disorder.  She shares in detail about her parents, her courtship, her years as a mother, and most notable, her inspiration and journey as a writer.  The beginning of the book wasn't as interesting as the second half, but it will be a wonderful tribute to her grandchildren as they will learn much about her ancestors.

I wasn't sure I would gain as much from this book aside from curiosity about her life, but surprised myself by dog-earring many pages.  I was surprised at how genuine and down to earth Paterson presented herself.  I found her role as mother to be touching.  In reflection about whether or not she had done a good job, she writes, "I loved them a lot, and even if I didn't spend nearly enough time cleaning the house they lived in, I made in countless hours of reading aloud."  Those were the kinds of nuggets I found throughout the book that made reading about her life not only enjoyable, but caused me to review my own life.  I enjoyed this book.  It is heartwarmingly funny and reflective.
MS, HS - ADVISABLE.  Reviewer: SL

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