Publication Date: July 3rd, 2014
Publisher: Puffin Classics
Genre: Children's, Classics
George C. Stone Center for Children's Books Recognition of Merit Award (1970), Massachusetts Children's Book Award (1984), Laura Ingalls Wilder Award (1970)
Synopsis (from Goodreads):
The tale of how a little girl named Fern, with the help of a friendly spider, saved her pig Wilbur from the usual fate of nice fat little pigs.
(From Puffin Books)
An affectionate pig named Wilbur befriends a spider named Charlotte, who lives in the rafters above his pen. In this story of friendship, hardship, and the passing on into time, White reminds readers to open their eyes to the wonder and miracle found in the simplest of things.
Elwyn Brooks White was a leading American essayist, author, humorist, poet and literary stylist and author of such beloved children's classics as Charlotte's Web, Stuart Little, and The Trumpet of the Swan. He graduated from Cornell University in 1921 and, five or six years later, joined the staff of The New Yorker magazine. He authored over seventeen books of prose and poetry and was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1973.
Mr. White has won countless awards, including the 1971 National Medal for Literature and the Laura Ingalls Wilder Medal, which commended him for making “a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children.”
Puffin Books is releasing a series of 20 classics with new covers and extra goodies inside. The one I've had the opportunity to review for today is none other than the beloved tale of Charlotte's Web. Now I'll be honest, I've developed a slight fear of spiders since I was a kid, but a huge part of me still loves our eight-legged heroine from childhood.
In this book, you will find pages and pages enriched with the original illustrations by Garth Williams. Does that name sound familiar? If so, its probably because he is also the illustrator of a few other books you may have grown up reading, such as Stuart Little and Little House on the Prairie. With this edition, you have the joy of reliving the intricate sketches and designs from Charlotte's Web.
Puffin Books has added some neat features to this version: background information on the illustrator and author, including what inspired E.B. White to write Charlotte's Web, definitions of the words used to describe Wilbur in the web, and a quiz at the end adding an educational experience for the reader.
The galley I received wasn't quite formatted well for my kindle, so everything was a bit jumbled. I'm sure the final product is user-friendly, but mine, unfortunately, was not. However, all the things that I was able to pick out from the galley are all great things that enhance the reader's interaction with the story.
I'm really looking forward to the next set of books that Puffin will be putting out in this collection. The covers are definitely something to note as well. They've really amplified the illustrations we associate with childhood, making the old seem new again. I can't wait to see the rest!