Listed as a children’s book, Charlotte’s Web is more of an-everyone-should-read-this-at-least-once-and-understand-it-human book.
- It’s about finding the beautiful in things not normally considered beautiful.
- About being a friend in a way another person needs a friend, not in the way you want to be a friend.
- About fighting for something you believe in.
- Standing up for someone and being their friend when they’re being bullied.
- Seeing beyond labels and appearance.
- Being there for someone even when you have a lot of other stuff going on.
Written by E.B. White and illustrated by Garth Williams, this classic has been rendered into plays, movies, cartoons, audiobooks, video games and is the winner of many awards. Published in 1952, the unpretentious matter-of-fact style transcends the test of time.
Of the thousands of books I have read, none has touched me in the same way.
I also loved White’s Trumpet of the Swan and Stuart Little, One Man’s Meat (excellent elegant essays) and obscure, but interesting, Is Sex Necessary? or Why You Feel The Way You Do (a 1929 parody co-written with James Thurber).
Thurber is a more prolific, but lesser known, but remarkably witty writer and cartoonist whose most enduring work is the short story, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty adapted in 1947 film starring Danny Kaye and Virginia Mayo.
So ignore that the other farm animals are still going to slaughter as Wilbur is saved. Ignore that each day more of mankind is Templeton the rat. I hope it gives you a new respect for spiders. And life. After all, we’re all in the web.
“You have been my friend,” replied Charlotte, “That in itself is a tremendous thing.”~E.B. White, Charlotte’s Web