“whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Phillippians 4:8

Charlotte's Web by E. B. White

Charlotte's Web is about a pig who wants to live and his spider friend who helps him. Charlotte is an ordinary looking gray spider, but she is extraordinarily talented: she can write. The only human who seems to understand her genius is the farmer's wife, and she eventually decides to credit Wilbur (the pig) with the feat.

I think most people have either read Charlotte's Web or seen one of the movies based on it. When I was little - around six years old - this was my favorite movie. I loved it and always wanted to watch it. When I got a little older, probably around nine, I read it for myself and loved it.

This time, as I read through it, I was thoroughly bored. It took me a month to finally get around to finishing it. It is a very simple story, but it is not told simply. The whole thing could be a picture book, but it's dragged out over two hours of reading at an adult speed. After finishing it, I'm not even sure what the moral of the story is. I guess the closest theme would be friendship, but, while Charlotte did everything for Wilbur, he did nothing for her except whine. He was continually worried that he was going to die and kept asking Charlotte what she was going to do about it. I get that he's a pig and doesn't have the best brain, but I was a bit annoyed with a major plot point of a pig who constantly frets about being killed.

I know this is a kids' book, and I need to be reviewing it as such, but I really don't know what to pull from this story. I'm not sure what kids are supposed to pull from it. Some people are hard to serve? One-sided friendship? Don't be a whiny little pig? Spiders aren't scary? Farm work is hard? Sometimes other people get the credit for your hard work? Maybe its main purpose is to broaden children's vocabulary. There were some words for which I had to look up the meanings. I know kids will like this book; I did when I was a child. But, as an adult, I don't really see its merit.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Bel Canto by Ann Patchett