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Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Russell Freedman Quote

"You don't simplify, you distill." Russell Freedman on how he makes his writing appropriate for children. See the interview of Freedman and James Cross Giblin at this article Rock Stars of the I.N.K. Variety by Linda Salzman. What a brilliant quote. I've had difficulty putting my finger on the exact term I think of when I think of good children's books, and I always knew "simplified" wasn't quite it. The best children's books aren't simple-- they are simply composed of only the most relevant parts. For example, I would hardly call Christopher Paul Curtis's new novel Elijah of Buxton, "simple". It's brilliant and sophisticated and completely accessible, but certainly not "simple".

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