Sunday, January 25, 2009

picture books, the bad.

I came across this book in school once - it's a very easy book, meant for very low readers. We had a lot of these books around for the newbies, and pretty much all of them were boring and very simple. But this one has always amazed me. It's called The Good Life, and you can see the whole book here.

The setting is a house, where two brightly colored birds are in their cages, chatting. Kip talks about wanting to live somewhere else.


Kip's housemate Bud describes his old home, Moon Island. He flew free there, he could play in the mud. But then Bud warns that island life wasn't as good as it seems.


On Moon Island, no one gives you food! Or fresh water! Sure, he had friends, but he also had birds who ripped food right out of his mouth!


After this thoroughly convincing argument, Kip decides that maybe Moon Island is not the place to be after all. For instance, he can fly around the living room every afternoon! Living in a cage, that's the good life!

Every time I read this book, I start thinking of it as some sort of backwards reasoning for why slavery is a good idea. I mean, seriously? The good life is spending time in a cage in a LIVING ROOM for your entire life? Being free to fly around the island is such a drag? I mostly just disagree with the whole message of not following one's dream, and instead staying where things are safe, where you can be waited on, but life is boring.

So, children. Follow your dreams! Go to Moon Island, or anywhere else that can make you happy!

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