Event Information

Classic Children's Literature Challenge January 2013

The Details

  • During the month of January 2013, we will read as many Children’s Classics as we wish and post about them on our blogs. I will have a link page starting the first of the month to gather posts so that we may share as we go.
  • Jean of Howling Frog Books will be posting a series on lesser-known children’s authors during the month of January.
  • The optional RAL title will be The Princess and the Goblin by George MacDonald. I plan on discussion the weekend of January 25-27.
  • For those who prefer to read digitally, The Princess and the Goblin is available free in multiple formats HERE or in a HTML format HERE.
  • I think many of us have read more recent children’s books that we may already deem “classics” (for example, many people feel that way about the Harry Potter books), but for this event, I’d prefer if we read books that were written prior to 1960. This will still allow a lot of options, and will hopefully avoid the “but what is a classic” dilemma!
  • Defining “children’s,” especially prior to 1900 or so can be a challenge as some books we think of as “children’s” today may not have been intended that way at the time. Personally, I’d say books appropriate for approximately an elementary-school aged child or preteen (to read or to have read to them) should be fine. I’d also count the various fairy tales, even though some of the earliest versions were not exactly always family friendly.
  • Books from any country, in translation or not, count. I have limited exposure to non-American children’s lit, so I’d love to learn about books from other countries myself.
  • Jean and I will be sharing a suggestions list of some pre-1960 titles closer to the start of the event, but feel free to read anything within the guidelines.

Please let me know in the comments on the INTRODUCTORY POST if you are interested in participating, and let me know if you have any questions. Please feel free to use any of the following on your own blogs. I’m just posting the small 200-pixel wide versions, but if you’d rather use a 400-wide version, let me know.

Image sources: The primary logo is adapted from an illustration by Scottish illustrator Anne Anderson, and was found on Wikimedia Commons. The ship logo is adapted from ‘Snake and Hawk’ headpiece illustration by N.C. Wyeth, as digitized by plumleaves and found on Flickr under a Creative Commons license. The image for the RAL logo is from a cover illustration for The Princess and the Goblin from a 1920 edition illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith. A web version of this illustrated edition is available HERE.


The Princess and the Goblin RAL January 2013
Classic Children's Literature Reading Challenge January 2013
Classic Children's Literature Reading Challenge January 2013
Classic Children's Literature Reading Challenge January 2013
Classic Children's Literature Reading Challenge January 2013


30 thoughts on “Event Information”

    1. Oh, I’m glad to hear such good things about The Princess and the Goblin! I’ll have to check out your posts. I’m especially curious about The Water Babies as I’ve heard of it but never actually read it. I’d be happy to have you join us for the event! I’d like to learn more about titles beyond US/Britain myself, so I’ll be trying to investigate some titles before the event starts.

      1. Sounds good! The Water Babies was…interesting. I’m glad I finally read it, but it was one of those very obviously messagey stories with a dragging plot. Still, it’s cute.

  1. I’ve been wanting to delve into George MacDonald’s children’s stories for the past few months so this reading event is timely. I just ordered a copy so I plan on joining in.

    My blog has been rather dormant of late, but I’m still reading, albeit at a bit of a slower pace.

    1. I was just thinking the other day that it had been a while since you’d posted. I’m glad to hear you’re still reading, and will be happy for you to join in the read-a-long. Welcome!

    1. It’s too bad you won’t be able to join in, but I hope you enjoy following along. If it weren’t so time-consuming, I’d be happy to read children’s lit for more than one month!

      1. I don’t like to promise things too far into the future as I can’t be sure of how much time I’ll have, but I’ll keep the possibility open. It’s certainly been fun so far!

  2. I haven’t a book blog – (mine is a lifestyle blog) – but I shall be following your event. At the moment I’m reading ‘The Hobbit’ which I would class as a children’s classic.

    1. I consider The Hobbit a children’s classic, too–and in fact I just reread this past fall. Even if you don’t participate, I hope you have fun following along!

    1. Oh, it’s too bad you didn’t hear about it until now–although, if you have time, you can still participate if you read and post by the end of the month.

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