07 May 2007
Book Banter -- The Wand in the Word
Title: The Wand in the Word
Author: Leonard S. Marcus (editor)
Length: 197 pages
Plot Basics: Marcus, a noted children's book editor and critic, has compiled 13 Q&A interviews with some of the top names in YA fantasy books. In the interviews, he discusses with them their childhoods, how they became writers, how world events like WWII impacted them and how they were influenced by The Lord of the Rings.
Banter Points: This book was like a dream-come-true for Word Nerd, because many of these writers were people she read as a child and made an impact on her as a writer (like Madeleine L'Engle and Lloyd Alexander), and YA authors she's discovered as an adult (like Garth Nix and Terry Pratchett). Plus, those that she hadn't heard of (like Susan Cooper and Diane Wynne Jones) are now on her to-be-read list because the interviews were all so interesting. Some of the authors insights into why they write fantasy and how it relates to real life were quite thought-provoking.
Bummer Points: Sometimes the author would reference one story or a character and if you hadn't read all the books, it was hard to know what the point was being made.
Word Nerd recommendation: If you like YA fantasy, this book is a must-read to find out more about the authors responsible for some favorite titles.