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British Children Have More Fun
by Georges T. Dodds
With the critical acclaim for Susanna Clarke's tale of 19th century magicians in London (Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell: A Novel), the popularity of Worst Witch, a TV series set in a British private girl's school for witches, and the Harry Potter series, it is clear that British wizards and magicians are seeing a wave of popularity not experienced since the days of John Dee, and that this magic is particularly popular when placed in the hands of pre-teen wielders. However, it is a different sort of magic -- that of the outdoors, of Nature, of imagination, of play and of learning and social dynamics it brings to children -- that interests Georges.

British Kids Have More Fun: The Corfu Trilogy British Kids Have More Fun: The Corfu Trilogy
a column by Georges T. Dodds
The series begins with the story of the five years the Durrell family spent on the Greek island of Corfu after the death of the father. While it does delve to some extent into the interpersonal relationships of family members, and some of the more colourful local folk, it is mainly a chronicle of the development of a budding zoologist.

British Kids Have More Fun: The Green Knowe Chronicles British Kids Have More Fun: The Green Knowe Chronicles
a column by Georges T. Dodds
While the people, places and objects in this series are different from the others and the history spans close to nine centuries, these books capture the essence of such a time in a child's life when an unfettered imagination, a locale which invites exploration, and an older, but not too intrusive adult is present to pass on the historical continuity of the family and locale, combine in a life-affirming and altering experience.

British Kids Have More Fun: British Kids Have More Fun: Swallows and Amazons
a column by Georges T. Dodds
John, Susan, Letitia, and Roger Walker are British school-children spending their summer holidays with their mother near a lake in northern England. From an overlook they can see a large island, and plan to sail there and camp. After some planning and gathering of equipment and food, they do so, with John as captain of the small sailboat Swallow, Susan as mate, Titty as Able-Seaman, and Roger as ship's boy -- setting up camp on the island.

British Kids Have More Fun: Wood Magic and Bevis British Kids Have More Fun: Wood Magic and Bevis
a column by Georges T. Dodds
Bevis, a young boy wanders into an enchanted woodland world, where all of Nature has stories to tell. In particular, the water flowing in the creeks and the wind whistling through the trees, have more profound truths to reveal, about life, about good and evil, and so on. With their help, Bevis can sort out the intrigues surrounding the woodland creatures' attempts to overthrow the evil autocratic regime of the magpie.

British Kids Have More Fun: Canadian Crusoes British Kids Have More Fun: Canadian Crusoes
a column by Georges T. Dodds
Two young teenage boys, Hector andLouis, and a teenage girl, Catherine, get lost in the Rice Lake region of Upper Canada while picking wild fruit. When they come to realize that they are well and truly lost, they don't panic, but use their wood lore and experience to build a shelter, kill or trap game, store food, and avoid marauding Native Americans, while over-wintering in the wilderness.

Copyright © 2005 Georges T. Dodds


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