RIP, Lloyd Alexander

Fantasy author Lloyd Alexander, beloved for his Chronicles of Prydain, died yesterday at the age of 71. From the Washington Post:

Mr. Alexander preferred an unflashy life. He played Mozart on his violin, drew cartoons and fed squirrels in his back yard. He once admitted to a weakness for doughnuts and wafers before bedtime.

My eternal thanks to Mrs. Phillips, who assigned us The Book of Three in sixth grade English, teaching me that fantasy IS real literature, thank you very much, even if they do tend to come in unwieldy series and have characters with funny names. We were very lucky and got to read The Dark is Rising in the seventh grade with Mrs. Durfee. I loved my school!

I still have my copy of The Book of Three, having always intended to share it with my children. I’m assuming that Superfast Baby will be born literate, because pregnancy is making me stock up on books–and not picture books. I’ve been raiding Bookmooch mercilessly, and almost have a complete set of Harry Potter. I mooched 4 John Bellairs books on Monday.

And yesterday, in a completely unrelated incident, I mooched three of the Chronicles of Prydain. The Castle of Llyr was unavailable in acceptable condition.

So, cheers to you Lloyd Alexander, and thanks for sharing your gifts with the world and generations to come. You will be missed.

I don’t usually write posts that aren’t connected to finishing a book, either for pleasure or for work, but I’ve been reading a lot of screenplays for work lately so fear not–Superfast Reading is happening, even though The Brothers Karamazov is turning me Superslow.

8 thoughts on “RIP, Lloyd Alexander”

  1. John Bellairs—now there’s an author I haven’t thought of in years. My best friend and I were obsessed with his books as children. Thanks for reminding me of him; I’ll have to reread some of his books.

    Maybe The House with a Clock in its Walls? When I first read it, that scene with the hand of glory was the scariest thing ever.

    We never had interesting books for our assigned reading in elementary school. I’m so jealous. Our grade 5 teacher did read to us from a surprisingly accurate collections of the greek myths (I remember that the story of Ganymede was a particular revelation to us.)

  2. I actually like your list. I read 4 of the books on the list when I was in High School years ago. The most interesting that I read on the list is #30, A Day in the Life of Ivan D. It was required reading in my Honors English class. We spent a quarter of the school year studying russian literature and it was required reading. It was a great read and I would read it again.

    The Bible should be read not for sport or for fun, but as a tool to guide us in this life.

    I do like the list compiled. I am not sure I would read much on the list these days, because of time contraints mostly, but if I am ever free to read like I used to as a kid, I might consider some on your list.

  3. His Westmark books are my favorite…this is the first I’ve heard about this and it makes me sad.

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