Growing up, I was fortunate to be surrounded by books. I can still remember the incredible feeling of losing myself in a book, traveling to a new place, another time, and inviting wonderful characters into my head.
Okay, I lied. Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White, illustrated by Garth Williams (Dell, 1952) is my all-time favorite book, tied with The Wolves of Willoughby Chase. I loved everything about this book, and it includes my favorite first line of all time: “Where’s Papa going with that ax?” Sheer genius.
I acquired this copy in college when I took a course in Children’s Literature. I was lucky, since it contains Garth Williams illustrations; not every edition does. I also have a hard-copy collector’s edition I bought a few years back. Every kid should read this book. They’ll never kill another spider again.