K.C. Poulos

July 3, 2007

Post #2247 – 20070703

Dear DP: My 7-yr-old daughter was convinced that chapter books were part of a conspiracy theory to make her read. Fair tales and picture books were the only bedtime fare allowed UNTIL “The Neddiad”! I brought it home under the cover of darkness in a library bag and made her close her eyes while I read the first chapter. Within minutes she was laughing and when she opened her eyes and saw the cover (by a family favorite illustrator, BTW) of a CHAPTER BOOK, she shouted, “I don’t care – keep reading!” Needless to say, we devoured the book, loved every moment of this high adventure and recommended it to her book club (but don’t call it that – sounds too, well, bookish). We are hosting the club in January ’08 (it’s in Oak Park, so drop by if you’d like!) and will be discussing the book while consuming our version of Hat Restaurant Hamburgers, so we were wondering if you’d answer a couple of questions: have you ever taken a cross-country train? Did you ever meet a ghost? Did you ever get separated from your parents and what did it feel like? Thanks! Your big fans from the Poulos family

Daniel replies:

There was a guy named Poulos in the Lake View High School band. Cool guy. Yes, I have taken that very train ride as described in The Neddiad. You can still take the same route, via Amtrak, but might be a good idea to bring a big picnic basket--the dining car is not what it was in the days of the Santa Fe. The only ghosts I have met have been animal ones. I have been separated from my family for years--feels ok.