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Advice to Little Girls


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Maria Popova of Brain Pickings has promised to promote the book aggressively and to urge her colleagues at boingboing.net etc to do so as well.

About the Author

Vladimir Radunsky has illustrated many wonderful books, including The Maestro Plays by Bill Martin Jr and Woody Guthrie's Howdi Do. He is also the author-illustrator of 10 (ten), The Mighty Asparagus, and (with Chris Raschka) of Table Manners. Born on November 30, 1835, in Florida, Missouri, Samuel L. Clemens wrote under the pen name Mark Twain and went on to pen several novels, including two major classics of American literature, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. He was also a riverboat pilot, journalist, lecturer, entrepreneur and inventor. It is unknown whether it was Mark Twain's actual intention for little girls to read this humorous short story published in 1867. What is clear is that he did not talk down to children, but rather expected them to stretch themselves in order to grasp sophisticated and perhaps even adult meanings.


Brain Pickings' Top 13 Children's, Illustrated, and Picture Books of 2013 "Crisply satirical and a little subversive, Twain's short, acerbic sendup slyly exhorts little girls to take a calculating approach to manipulating friends, brothers and elders. [...] An elegant curiosity for admirers of Twain, Radunsky or both." -- Kirkus Review "Radunsky's ink flourishes and adorable, lumpy figures steal the stage." -- Publishers Weekly "Twain did not squat down to be heard and understood by children, but asked them to stand on their tiptoes--to absorb the kind of language and humor suitable for adults." -- New York Review of Books "While frolicsome in tone and full of wink, the story -- like the most timeless of children's books -- is colored with subtle hues of grown-up philosophy on the human condition, exploring all the deft ways in which we creatively rationalize our wrongdoing and reconcile the good and evil we each embody." -- Brain Pickings "it is sharp, a pointed set of admonitions urging girls to think for themselves, which is a message as essential today as it was a century-and-a-half ago." -- The Los Angeles Times "a sharp, charming story suitable for smart girls (and grown ups!) everywhere, and Radunsky's illustrations bring it to scribbled, red-cheeked life. It may just be the best picture book we've ever read." -- Flavorwire

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