Starting when she was quite small, I began reading this book to my daughter:
“Starting” and “began” are the operative words here. Because I’ve never managed to finish reading the book to her. The first time out we made it through T.H. White’s early descriptions of the castle where the Wart lives. The second, through the Wart’s encounter with Merlyn, after he chases a runaway falcon through the forest. The third, through all the Wart’s magical changes into other animals: sly fish, bellicose ants, too-clever birds; and to his dragon-slaying adventures with Robin Wood. At some point we made it to Arthur pulling the sword from the stone, and being crowned King, and Lancelot. And then…we stopped.
Because this is the year that Ada no longer wants to be read to. Not for love nor money will she agree to snuggling on the couch and allowing me to tell a story aloud. It is possibly the saddest occurrence in my life as a mother so far. My only defense at this point seems to be to read this my favorite of all books to and for myself for the first time in 20 years. And to hope that one day, Ada will pick it up on her own, and discover that she loves it in its entirety as much as I do.