The author, whose His Dark Materials trilogy alone has been translated into 40 languages and sold millions, talks about what children look for in stories”If you want your children to be intelligent,” Albert Einstein once remarked, “read them fairytales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairytales.” It is a sentiment with which Philip Pullman heartily agrees. Which is as well, because his latest bestseller is a highly acclaimed and high-voltage retelling of 50 Grimm brothers fairytales.”Fairy stories,” Pullman says, sitting on the sofa in his comfortable Oxfordshire farmhouse, “loosen the chains of the imagination. They give you things to think with – images to think with – and the sense that all kinds of things are possible. While at the same time being ridiculous or terrifying or consolatory. Or something else altogether, as well.”Not everyone of a scientific bent would, he concedes, necessarily concur. Richard Dawkins, for one, has said he is not at all sure of the effect on children of “bringing them up to believe in spells and wizards and magic wands and things turning into other things”. It is all “very unscientific”, Dawkins frets.But Pullman, who is not only one of our …read more

Via: The Guardian | Books