Aleta Fera

April 21, 2002

Post #1475 – 20020421

living in the boonies as i do, it’s not often that i get the chance to purchase fine children’s books for myself. and as i really feel that my marriage can go no further until my husband has a chance to read both snarkout books, yesterday i began a search for ‘4 novels’ (i already have ‘5 novels,’ which makes me happy). we went to a wonderful bookstore in halifax that is just stuffed to the brim with great books, and although the kind owners were unable to get me ‘4 novels’, they did hand me ‘fishwhistle.’ in the intervening 24 hours i have been bothering my friends and loved ones by demanding that they sit still and listen while i read one of the pieces to them. they always forgive me at the end of it.

i think that my favourite piece so far is ‘who’s little jackson pollack are you?’ in a week i will complete the requirements of an education degree, and i find myself concerned with what we do to children and how and why. it sounds mushy, but i found it inspirational that you uncovered the fact that we all make art. this is the kind of teacher i want to be.

finally, on a semi-related note, i hadn’t realized that so many moments in your books are based on things and places and people in chicago. i’ll be visiting chicago for the first time in the summer to see my sister & brother; can you recommend a whirlwind pinkwater tour?



wolfville, nova scotia

Daniel replies:

It's ""4 Fantastic Novels,"" (Simon and Schuster). Maybe that will help. Fishwhistle is long out of print, and replaced by ""Hoboken Fish & Chicago Whistle,"" (Xlibris), which is two books in one. I will give you one element of the Pinkwater Chicago tour: Find the Fine Arts Building on Michigan Avenue, slightly south and across the street from the Art Institute. It's an old building. It has an inner arch with the words ""Ars longae, vita brevis,"" inscribed above. Take the elevator to the top floor and then take the stairs down, slowly. Look and snoop around on each floor. Check the views from the windows in the restrooms, read the names on the doors, listen to the sounds, observe the decor. Report to us here on your impressions. Have fun.