24 March 2012

The Reading Promise: a mini-review

The Reading Promise chronicles The Streak: the consecutive nights that Alice Ozma's father read to her from fourth grade until the day she left for college.

This is a very personal memoir, but not a very dramatic one.  As endearing as it is that Ozma's father - a children's librarian - is determined to remain a part of her life as their family breaks up, he also strikes me as being different from a number of fathers (including my own).  Although it is obvious he loves his daughter, Ozma never portrays him as affectionate which creates a sort of weird duality where he is both doting and distant.

I do like how there were no "revelations" through reading aloud for over one thousand nights: no one has an epiphany, no one is made a better person.  It is simply that reading aloud creates a coccoon of personal time for father and daughter that is meant to be savored.

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