happy birthday to a pig, a spider, a rat

Charlotte's Web--a story about love and friendship among an most unlikely crew: Wilbur, a pig; Charlotte, a spider; Templeton, a rat--came out 60 years ago today. Along with millions of other children, I loved this book as a child, and am always so glad when kids still come in and check it out!

I am thinking fondly of this beloved childhood book today, and wanted to share this quote from Eudora Welty's review of Charlotte's Web. It appeared in The New York Times Book Review:

"What the book is about is friendship on earth, affection and protection, adventure and miracle, life and death, trust and treachery, pleasure and pain, and the passing of time. As a piece of work it is just about perfect, and just about magical in the way it is done."
From Eudora Welty: A Writer's Eye: Collected Book Reviews, edited by Pearl Amelia McHaney, University of Mississippi Press, 1994.

And I also wanted to share a favorite passage from Charlotte's Web:
“You have been my friend. That in itself is a tremendous thing. I wove my webs for you because I liked you. After all, what's a life, anyway? We're born, we live a little while, we die. A spider's life can't help being something of a mess, with all this trapping and eating flies. By helping you, perhaps I was trying to lift up my life a trifle. Heaven knows anyone's life can stand a little of that.” 
--E.B. White, Charlotte's Web



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