Saturday, January 14, 2012

Genre reading

Continuing to read Michael Dirda's On Conan Doyle: Or, The Whole Art of Storytelling, this paragraph appears in the chapter "Twilight Tales":
.... Gradually, I was becoming aware that in one generation—in effect, during the lifetime of Arthur Conan Doyle—there appeared most of our pattern-establishing masterpieces of science fiction, horror, fantasy, and adventure. Recall just some of the English-language books published in the forty years between 1885 and 1925: King Solomon's Mines, Kidnapped, The Prisoner of Zenda, The Time Machine, Dracula, Kim, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Five Children and It, Peter Pan, The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Man Who Was Thursday, Tarzan of the Apes, Flatland, The Thirty-Nine Steps, Ghost Stories of an Antiquary, The War of the Worlds, Trent's Last Case, Riders of the Purple Sage, The Wind in the Willows, Captain Blood, and dozens of others. ....
Do boys and girls still read books like this? How much I envy any person who has not read one of them yet — because there are few experiences like reading a book like Kidnapped or The Wind in the Willows or The Time Machine or Dracula or The Prisoner of Zenda or The Thirty-Nine Steps or The Hound of the Baskervilles for the first time.

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