Our friend Taylor guest blogs for us once again!
I love exploring new children’s literature, but I’ll admit I have a soft spot for classic lit as well. In particular, I am a huge fan of Astrid Lindgren (author of the world-famous Pippi Longstocking series).
In Mio, My Son, Lindgren writes the tale of Mio, an orphaned boy living in foster care in Stockholm. He has one friend and longs to know his father. Eventually, through a series of supernatural events, he is whisked away to Farawayland, where his father is king. There, he experiences unconditional love for the first time in his life. However, like all fairy tales, there is adversity; Mio discovers that he is destined to fight the cruel Sir Kato in the Outer Kingdom.
What I love about this book is not its sophistication; it is a pretty simple and standard fairy tale. What stands out about this book is the relationship between Mio and his father the king. As I wrote about in my review of Ronia, the Robber’s Daughter, Lindgren does a superb job of creating excellent unromantic relationships in which unconditional love is the central feature. Even when Mio is in the hateful Outer Kingdom and doubts his father’s love, he hears a whisper of his father’s voice and gains the strength to continue his quest.
So, regardless of how you feel about fairy tales and genies, this book is worth giving a try if only to take in Lindgren’s excellent writing about the kind of relationships we all long for.