Monday, January 7, 2019

Reviews from the Children's Section - At the Back of the North Wind

One of my favorite genres and one that is the easiest for me to push aside is middle grade fiction. This year to make sure I get a little more children's and young adult fiction I thought I would designate the first Monday of every month Middle Grade Monday (though sometimes it doesn't end up working quite right) .  While a lot of my picks this year are classics I am trying to branch out a little bit and read new or at least recent releases.  This month's read is a classic that I had never read but had a bit of nostalgia attached none the less - At the Back of the North Wind by George MacDonald.

Goodreads:  At the Back of the North Wind by George MacDonald

This was one of my Grandmother's favorite books as a child so there was quite a bit of pressure on me to like it.  And at first I wasn't so sure.  I didn't love Alice in Wonderland and the beginning had the same whimsical nonsensical feel to it. All the back and forth discussion between Diamond and the North Wind didn't interest me and felt a bit like listening to someone describe there dream in minute detail.  However, suddenly the book gained traction and while there is a good deal of whimsy and a bit of nonsense I found myself really enjoying it and wanting to hear more about young Diamond's adventures.  The book was originally published in 1868 which was a time where children's fiction tended to lean heavily on a moral tale.  However, while Diamond is most definitely good and pure, the whimsical nature of it kept it from being overly preachy.  It occasionally lapsed into fairy tales which wasn't really for me but I enjoyed the story enough that I didn't mind.  This would be perfectly appropriate for any age reader and I suspect that it will entertain any reader who enjoys fanciful tales and doesn't mind a touch of sadness.

As a parent I would have no issue with a child of any age reading this.  I didn't find there to be much scary imagery or intensity.  This would be a good read a loud book and would be a fun fanciful story to share.


  1. I agree - I may get it for my granddaughter. You are always full of great ideas for me for the G-daughter. I appreciate it!

  2. I love the idea of doing Middle Grades on Monday. I honestly never heard of this book but it should interesting. I loved Alice and I have a bit of a fondness for whimsy and nonsense. :) awesome post, Katherine! :)

  3. I am not too familiar with George MacDonald, but his name seems to be popping up a lot lately. This sounds interesting.

  4. Thanks for sharing. I love seeing vintage books I haven't heard of before. 💜

  5. I have never heard of this book. I do like fairytales so I wonder if I would enjoy it.