20 episodes

Revisiting the books that made us who we are today

Rereading Our Childhood Mary Grace McGeehan and Deborah Kalb

    • Arts
    • 5.0 • 4 Ratings

Revisiting the books that made us who we are today

    Rereading The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster

    Rereading The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster

    On this episode, Mary Grace and Deborah discuss The Phantom Tollbooth, Norton Juster's 1961 classic about Milo, a boy who's bored with life until a mysterious tollbooth takes him and his electric car to The Lands Beyond, where he meets the warring kings of Dictionopolis and Digitopolis and many other memorable characters. Jules Feiffer's numerous illustrations are as important a part of the story as the text.

    This is the last episode of our first season. We'll be back in May. 
    Mentioned on this episode:
    The Dot and the Line (1963), written and illustrated by Norton Juster
    The Odious Ogre (2010) by Norton Juster, illustrated by Jules Feiffer
    Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson
    The New York Times Book Review podcast's 2020 interview with Jules Feiffer, where he talks about his friendship and collaboration with Juster
    Juster's 2021 New York Times obituary
    A 2015 Smithsonian Magazine  profile on Juster where he discusses his synesthesia
    Recommended for fans of The Phantom Tollbooth:
    Half Magic by Edward Eager 
    The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum and the other Oz books
    Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
    The podcast is hosted by Buzzsprout at rereadingourchildhood.buzzsprout.com and is available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and other podcast platforms.
    You can find Debby’s author interviews on her blog, Books Q&A by Deborah Kalb, and Mary Grace’s adventures in the 1920s on her blog, My Life 100 Years Ago.
    This episode was edited by Adam Linder of Bespoken Podcasting.

    #children's books
    Podcast website at rereadingourchildhood.com

    • 27 min
    Rereading The Egypt Game by Zilpha Keatley Snyder

    Rereading The Egypt Game by Zilpha Keatley Snyder

    Mary Grace and Deborah discuss The Egypt Game, Zilpha Keatley Snyder's 1967 Newbery Honor Book about a group of children who create an elaborate game based on ancient Egypt.  
    Mentioned on this episode:
    The Egypt Game: A Second Look, The Horn Book
    The Kirkus Review review of The Egypt Game
    A 2011 post on the website Banned Reads Project featuring three teenagers' perspectives on The Egypt Game
    The ACLU’s list of The 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books of 1990-2000
    The Waste Land by T.S. Eliot
    The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by T.S. Eliot
    Other books by Zilpha Keatley Snyder:
    The Gypsy Game, the 1997 sequel to The Egypt Game
    The Headless Cupid (1971), a Newbery Honor Book
    The Witches of Worm (1972), a Newbery Honor Book
    The Changeling (1970)
    Eyes in the Fishbowl (1968)
    Black and Blue Magic (1966)
    Season of Ponies (1964)
    Recommended for fans of The Egypt Game:
    Jennifer, Hecate, Macbeth, William McKinley, and Me, Elizabeth, by E.L. Konigsberg (1967 Newbery Honor Book)
    From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg (1967 Newbery Medal winner)
    Magic or Not? by Edward Eager
    The Well-Wishers by Edward Eager

    This episode was edited by Adam Linder of Bespoken Podcasting.

    #children's books
    Podcast website at rereadingourchildhood.com

    • 33 min
    Rereading Danny Dunn and the Anti-Gravity Paint by Jay Williams and Raymond Abrashkin

    Rereading Danny Dunn and the Anti-Gravity Paint by Jay Williams and Raymond Abrashkin

    On this episode, Deborah and Mary Grace discuss Danny Dunn and the Anti-Gravity Paint, published in 1956. In the first book of the popular series, Danny discovers a secret rocket project and, oops, accidentally launches the rocket into space.
    Discussed in this episode:
    A 2023 New Yorker article about Danny Dunn
    Other books in the series:
    Danny Dunn and the Homework Machine 
    Danny Dunn and the Fossil Cave
    As Deborah mentions, Danny Dunn and the Anti-Gravity Paint was illustrated by Ezra Jack Keats, who wrote and illustrated the Caldecott Award-winning picture book The Snowy Day.
    For fans of Danny Dunn, Mary Grace recommends the Henry Reed series. We discussed Henry Reed, Inc., the first book in the series, on our third episode. Deborah recommends the Encyclopedia Brown books. The first book in the series, Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective, was discussed on our eighth episode. 
    The podcast is hosted by Buzzsprout at rereadingourchildhood.buzzsprout.com and is available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and other podcast platforms.
    You can find Debby’s author interviews on her blog, Books Q&A by Deborah Kalb, and Mary Grace’s adventures in the 1920s on her blog, My Life 100 Years Ago.
    This episode was edited by Adam Linder of Bespoken Podcasting.
    Podcast website at rereadingourchildhood.com

    • 25 min
    Our Favorite Children's Books from 50 Years Ago

    Our Favorite Children's Books from 50 Years Ago

    Mary Grace and Deborah ring in 2024 with a special episode where they count down their five favorite books from 50 years ago, defined as published between 1972 and 1974. They (mostly) didn't reread these books for the episode, so their choices are based on their childhood memories.

    As Mary Grace mentions, the format was inspired by the Book Riot podcast, which has done a number of similar countdowns, including a fun episode on the top bookish phenomena of the past 25 years.

    Here are Deborah's and Mary Grace's favorites--but we suggest that you listen to the episode before looking at the list!

    Deborah's Favorites
    5. Nobody's Family is Going to Change by Louise Fitzhugh
    4. A Billion for Boris by Mary Rodgers
    3. Victoria by Barbara Brooks Wallace
    2. The Genie of Sutton Place by George Selden
    1. A Proud Taste for Scarlet and Miniver by E.L. Konigsburg

    Mary Grace's Favorites
    5. A Wind in the Door by Madeleine L'Engle
    4. Dinky Hocker Shoots Smack! by M.E. Kerr
    3. Glory in the Flower by Norma Johnston
    2. A Billion for Boris by Mary Rodgers
    1. The Dark is Rising  by Susan Cooper

    You can find Deborah’s author interviews on her blog Books Q&A by Deborah Kalb and Mary Grace’s adventures in the 1920s on her blog, My Life 100 Years Ago.

    This episode was edited by Adam Linder of Bespoken Podcasting.

    #children's books
    Podcast website at rereadingourchildhood.com

    • 23 min
    Rereading Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren

    Rereading Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren

    Mary Grace and Deborah discuss Pippi Longstocking, Astrid Lindgren's 1945 classic (published in English in 1950) about an anarchic Swedish girl. They discuss their love for the book as children, their mixed feelings on rereading it, and Pippi as a feminist icon. Mary Grace, who spent a month in Sweden earlier this year, talks about Lindgren's legendary status in Sweden, where she's literally on the money. 
    Discussed on this episode:

    The BBC News survey on the 100 greatest children's books of all time, with Pippi Longstocking at #3 
    Pippi in the South Seas by Astrid Lindgren
    The Brothers Lionheart by Astrid Lindgren
    The Children of Noisy Village by Astrid Lindgren
    Beverly Cleary's Ramona books
    Joan Aiken's Wolves Chronicles series
    Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
    The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsen
    The virtual tour of Astrid Lindgren's apartment on astridlindgren.com
     Mary Grace couldn't find the interview with Lindgren's daughter Karin, who one night when she was ill with pneumonia asked her mother to tell her a story about Pippi Longstocking, but Karin discussed it in this 2016 Guardian article. 
    You can find Deborah’s author interviews on her blog Books Q&A by Deborah Kalb and Mary Grace’s adventures in the 1920s on her blog, My Life 100 Years Ago.
    This episode was edited by Adam Linder of Bespoken Podcasting.

    #children's books
    Podcast website at rereadingourchildhood.com

    • 35 min
    Rereading Half Magic by Edward Eager

    Rereading Half Magic by Edward Eager

    Mary Grace and Deborah discuss Edward Eager's Half Magic, the first of Eager's seven books of magical adventures. Four bored siblings living in a Midwestern city in the 1920s find a magic amulet...except it only grants half of what you wish for. We talk about what has and hasn't held up in the six decades since Half Magic was published, about Eager's life, and about the real (and extremely inappropriate) silent movie they go to.

    Mentioned on this episode:

    Barbara, the inappropriate movie, reviewed in Motion Picture World . (The critic didn't like it any more than the children did.)

    Edward Eager's biggest hit song, "Good-bye, John."

    Deborah's magical time travel books:
    George Washington and the Magic Hat
    John Adams and the Magic Bobblehead
    Thomas Jefferson and the Return of the Magic Hat

    You can find Debby's author interviews on her blog Books Q&A by Deborah Kalb and Mary Grace's adventures in the 1920s on her blog, My Life 100 Years Ago.

    This episode was produced by Adam Linder of Bespoken Podcasting. 
    Podcast website at rereadingourchildhood.com

    • 34 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
4 Ratings

4 Ratings

N4newfy ,

Love this podcast!

I’m so happy I found this podcast! I have been re-reading books from my childhood throughout the pandemic years and now, and this is the perfect podcast to accompany my reading. It’s like comfort food, but in book form and these two women bring great new insight to books I have always loved.

kaneohe mama ,

Mary Grace & Debby discuss!

Very entertaining, especially if you’ve recently seen the movie or plan to see it.

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