The Eye of Childhood, short stories

The Eye of Childhood is a collection of short stories by notable authors including Graham Greene, John Updike, and D.H. Lawrence, most of them male and most of them from the British Isles. They generally focus on horrific experiences in childhood, told from the point of view of the child.

One story involves a creepy housekeeper who has her room next door to a young boy. We never really find out why he is so scared of her. Another involves young twin boys playing hide and seek in the dark at a party. One is terrified of the dark and his brother tries to comfort him. Another deals with a severe childhood sickness. Still another deals with the death of an elderly friend. Another story deals with discovery of an infidelity on the part of a boy’s mother.

Before each story is a little piece on the author and what else they wrote. At the end of the story are notes about some of the unusual words or turns of phrase and a set of discussion questions. The phrases and words were generally familiar to me, being of a certain (ahem) mature age and having lived in Britain. I thought it would be an excellent selection of stories for a high school English class. It brought to mind how much everyday language has changed in the last century or so.

I recommend it for some thoughtful and enjoyable reading. The slender volume is perfect for a short ride on the train to work.




About KLevenson

I am Teacher Librarian at Piedmont High School in the San Francisco East Bay. I am a part time reference Librarian I for the San Francisco Public Library. I have a Masters in Library and Information Sciences from San Jose State and a Teacher Librarian credential in addition to my teaching credential in Science. My first MA was from Harvard in Archaeology. My students teach me something new every time I am with them!
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