Ah, Mary and Bill. I learned to read at age three, with this book. Run, Red, run. See Red run. Red was their dog–their very boring dog. I’m sorry to say that everything about Mary and Bill was pretty boring, even though the cover makes it look kind of cool, as if maybe Mary had the power to lay round rubber eggs and Bill was just about to rat her out.
Probably much of the credit for my loving books goes to my older sister who taught me to read, who read to me (complete with funny voices), and in front of me, and didn’t make a fuss when I creased the spines of her paperback Little House series. Much.
All my family loved to read, in fact, and for that, I’m eternally grateful.
The same sister was an outstanding performer on stage and from the age of seven or eight, I started attending the local high school productions, and then a theater summer camp given by the high school drama teacher. By the time I was a senior, I was the one who was Drama Club President, but I didn’t have any ideas about being a professional performer. I just loved the theater world. And the words–especially the words. I loved their power to create emotions and understanding out of nothing but alphabet letters.
At this writing, I live on the southern coast of my home state of North Carolina. I have two darling kids and a not-boring dog, a wonderful husband, and a whole lot of books–especially middle grade novels. As you can see from the image in the blog header, many of them are beat-up, beloved childhood copies, stories I read over and over again. Looking at that picture is like seeing a little of my soul, in a way. If you’re also part Streatfeild, part Drina, part “Hey, kids–let’s put on a show!” . . . maybe we can be friends.