Printed Page Bookshop
September 2021

"Daddy, will you read me a story from Perrault?"
Albert Einstein reportedly once said, "If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales.  If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales." 
Fairy tales remain an important part of our development as social creatures.  Many hold a sacred place in the hearts of readers all over the world.  These stories of courage, fear, romance, and morals transcend the boundaries of culture, and influence our formative in years in ways more profound than most of us realize.
Throughout the centuries, the fairy tale grew into a genre of its own, and by the late 1600s was firmly rooted in the literary traditions of countries like France, in particular.  And of course, they weren't just for children.  In the fashionable salons of France, intellectuals gathered to read and tell magical tales that borrowed from the ancient originals.  One author of such stories, Charles Perrault, introduced iconic works to new audiences through "Stories or Tales of Times Gone By, with Moralities."  It included such now-familiar stories as "Cinderella," "Sleeping Beauty," and "Little Red Riding Hood."  
Strong throughout all fairy tales are themes such as good versus evil, models of right and wrong, and the power of enduring hope.  Collectively, these stories help all of us learn to navigate the complexities of a big world filled with uncertainty. 
And regardless of the ethnic/national origin of a given fairy tale (the Chinese had a story involving a humble girl, a cruel stepmother, and a golden slipper), such elements have remained rather consistent over time -- even in those collections that supposedly had nationalistic themes such as the Brothers Grimm (pictured above) and their early 19th century anthology of German folklore.
The fairy tale is where reality meets the incredible; where the complex is easier to understand; and where all of us can gain practical perspective through fantasy.
Einstein, for one, certainly saw the real-world value of such advantages:  "When I examine myself and my methods of thought, I come to the conclusion that the gift of fantasy has meant more to me than any talent for abstract, positive thinking."
-Michael G. Williams



This Month's Puzzler
On September 11, 1885, this man was born in Eastwood, Nottinghamshire England. His father was a nearly illiterate coal-miner and his mother an educated and refined schoolmistress. Growing up in a working-class community, he developed a love of reading that set him apart from his
peers. He dropped out of school at age sixteen to work in a factory, but had to quit because of pneumonia. While convalescing, some of his writings landed in the hands of a friend, who recognized his literary potential and urged him to write and continue his education. After
obtaining a teacher's certificate and teaching in a London suburb, his poems and short stories were brought to the attention of Ford Madox Ford, editor of the influential "English Review," who began to publish his work. He made his debut on the literary scene with "Sons and Lovers" in 1913, and he ultimately became one of the 20th century’s most influential and controversial writers. Today, he is best remembered for a 1928 novel that was considered so salacious it was banned in most English-speaking countries until 1960. A painter as well as a writer, he believed that an appreciation of beauty could serve as an antidote to the dehumanizing nature of modern, industrialized life. He once wrote:

"The human soul needs actual beauty even more than bread."

Who is this person? What was the title of his 1928 novel? (Answers below)
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Puzzler answer

D.H. Lawrence.  "Lady Chatterley's Lover."  If you like our Puzzler, find more on our Facebook page.  We often have Sunday contests where you can win fabulous prizes (books).
Thanks to Dr. Mardy Grothe for the use of his puzzler.  Visit him at drmardy.com.

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