I just finished reading Tuck Everlasting aloud to our children. The last time I read it was just around ten years ago, and it is one of those stories that really stays with you. Forever. I’ve been known to pull out a reference to the Tucks as if we just read it yesterday, and since quite a few of our children are under ten years old, or close enough to not remember the tale, I figured we better read it again. So, four reasons you should add it to your library:
1. It’s an easy read. The chapters are short and the vocabulary is not very sophisticated, so younger children are definitely not wondering at the meanings of unusual words. Six-year-old Penelope had no trouble following along and was highly engaged. Also, every three or so chapters, there is a natural pausing point, a change of venue, so to speak, that leaves the listeners hanging, eager for the next evening’s helping. I like to keep ’em on the edge of their seats.
2. It opens up a delightful conversation about whether or not living forever is actually a good thing! Six of our seven children (the four-year-old abstained) were actively discussing the pros and cons, and although God is not mentioned in the story, it’s a natural segue for the Faithful.
3. It’s one of the best stories I’ve ever read. I mentioned the language is not terribly sophisticated, but it is a beautifully woven tale, innocent and wonderful. I could read this one much more often than I have and never tire of it. Which is saying a lot. (I seldom read a book twice!)
4. And when you’re done, there is also an excellent movie version you could watch! It’s a Disney production, but it’s one of the few books-to-movies that they did really well. Winnie is older, and the jail break scene is a little different, but it’s just as innocent and wonderful as the novel. You won’t be sorry, I promise!