Books That Inspire 2012

The Water Babies: A Fairy Tale for a Land Baby
Charles Kingsley

When I was a preschooler, my mother read The Water Babies to me from an edition that had belonged to her mother as a child. The vivid descriptions of plants and animals Tom, the former chimney sweep, encounters as a water sprite held me rapt. As I listened, I sensed the potential of words to enthrall and evoke. I attribute my continued appreciation of literature to these early experiences. Though the work's Victorian prejudices make it unsuitable for children, he Water Babies will still reward readers who can appreciate its social commentary and satire.

Sarah McKinzey
Staff Assistant II/Engineering Library
University Libraries