Proverbs 22:6 – Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old, he will not depart from it.
For our Summer Reading Series, I chose the easy reader version of The Wind in the Willows. This six book series by Laura Driscoll is an adaptation of the 20th century children’s literature classic by Kenneth Grahame designed for ages 5-7. The series follows the friendship of four animal friends: Mole, Rat, Badger and Toad ~ the two main characters being Mole and Rat ~ in an English countryside setting. Each book, which has four brief chapters done in easy writing style with charming illustrations, is a simple, retelling of the episode in the original book by Grahame.
The series starts off with Mole meeting Rat at the Riverbank in book one and making the decision to live there. Then book two introduces Toad, who invites Mole and Rat on a trip in his new horse-drawn cart. In book three we are introduced to Badger, when Mole goes into Wild Wood alone one winter’s day and gets lost. Book four is my personal favorite of the series. In it, Mole, who has been living with Rat by the river, becomes homesick and decides to take Rat back to his home. When he arrives, he sees how dusty, cold and empty his home has become and gets sad, but soon his friend Rat is able to show him how to make his house a Home Sweet Home again. Book five takes us back to Toad with a story about friends helping a friend. When Toad becomes careless and dangerous, Mole, Rat and Badger try to help him see his behavior but Toad refuses to accept their advice and learns a lesson the hard way. The series ends with Rat becoming restless when he sees all wildlife leaving the river for winter and ponders whether he too should leave, which causes Mole concern because he doesn’t want to lose his friend.
This Wind in the Willows series is a great way to introduce a young child to the characters, their friendship and life lessons learned along the way. My son loved the series and we look forward to reading the full original book together when he gets older.