the girl in the castle inside the museum

March 24, 2015

This has been interesting, this first quarter of 2015. I realized a few things. One, there's no way I could go at the pace I was going at a year ago, or oh my stars, two years ago. That pace was not sustainable. I've definitely made the move to less often, but hopefully, more thoughtful, blogging. And I also realized that what with the new dog, photography sessions happening here and there, taking care of my family (oh those guys!), it's always a guessing game as to how long my sanity and health are going to hold out, and I better get those books I've been sitting on for ages out on the blog.

That's a looooooongwinded way of saying that I realized that I hadn't profiled 'The Girl in the Castle Inside the Museum' by Kate Bernheimer and Nicoletta Ceccoli yet and I'm horrified. I've had it since Julia was four.

It's one of the most beautiful, coolest, haunting, COOLEST, most amazing picture books I've ever seen. Reading this story is like jumping into someone's fantastic dream.

Let's back up and look at that statement again, yes?

One of the most beautiful and amazing picture books I have ever seen. Ever.

I know I've been on a HUGE Nicoletta Ceccoli kick, and I make no apologies. Let's just let me get it all out of my system! I've been throwing her name out here and there for the past month. Her art brings new life to the fairy tale artwork realm.

Oh and let's give me a little high five for extra creativity points today, ok? Because I took some recent photos of Julia in her new spring dress and a couple of them really struck me as being very 'Girl in the Castle Inside the Museum-ish'.

A hint of darkness, in Nicoletta's work. Which is the way the best fairy tales operate.

And always, I must share my husband Andrew's comment: "those doll people look creepy."

I remember when I first saw this book - I had borrowed it from the library. About 10 seconds after bringing it home, I ordered it from Amazon.

(Nicoletta's illustrations in this book about magical creatures was one of Julia's all time top favorite books for a solid two years when she was 4 and 5. Well, and 6. She still loves it!)

I think my fascination stems from the fact that I've always been obsessed with miniatures. And tiny worlds.  I love the idea of a secret (and tiny!) society happening right under our noses. Which is why I find the whole idea of fairies, pixies, elves, and leprechauns endlessly appealing.

True story - I STILL BELIEVE IN FAIRIES. I'll go to my grave with the notion that....no one has proven to me that they don't exist. So until that happens, I'm going to believe that they do.

This post from Sarah really struck a chord with me when I read it, because it was such an articulate way of expressing something I feel often. When I was young, my books were my entire world. Especially fairy tale books. And now that I'm grown, at any given time, I'm reading a children's book. I can't say how important I think it is, to have beautiful books, classic books, and fairy tale books lying around for your kids. Not to slam 'Babymouse' or 'Captain Underpants' (both of which I would have LOVED as a kid), but I think it's also just a Really Good Thing to have works of total whimsy and crazy beautiful imagination about the house.

Have you ever envisioned a world within a snowglobe? Or imagined walking past a dollhouse and catching a glimpse of a tiny dress fluttering past the corner of a doorway? You need to see this book.




9 comments:

  1. I totally agree - having whimsical, beautiful, dark and magical books in the house is SO important!

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    1. Yes Lucy, yes! I know you're on board with this. #bookcomrades :)

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  2. I agree as well.....and we have this book and absolutely love it!

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    1. That makes me SO happy, I can't tell you! I guess I just did. :)

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  3. You know me, I like all the books! There's room for everything! Although lately, I am probably the whimsy queen around here. Sigh. And we loved this book. I never bought a copy for home, but it was on our Amazon wish list (and it probably still is) and we checked it out from the library a few times. I love Ceccoli, too.

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    1. I LIKE ALL THE BOOKS! that's my new catchphrase!

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  4. Ordering it now. You sold it, sister. And, yea, I have imagined the world from inside a snowglobe and I believe in fairies, too.

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    1. Hurray! In my last life, maybe I was a used car salesperson. Now Amazon will send me a whole nickel! ha ha ha. Anyhoo, you'll LOVE the book. While you're at it, you should order that Once Upon A Cloud book I mentioned a couple weeks ago - finally saw it in person and my jaw dropped on the floor - flipping incredible. So cute you just can't even believe it.

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