“The Spell of the Satirist’s Skill”

my children's-book column for Acculturated:I don’t know why anyone would ever want to rule a fantasy kingdom, or become an evil wizard, when you have to deal with countless irksome children giving you backchat. It seems that almost every kids’ fantasy written nowadays has a “spunky” hero or heroine: kids who speak their mind or talk back to their elders, even when sass is clearly not the wisest move. These kids’ mentors constantly praise them for their bravery, but it’s hard to see why, … [Read more...]