American Childhood by Annie Dillard Is a Book Review

Excerpt from Book Review :

American Childhood by Annie Dillard is a nostalgic narrative about her childhood. It is a book about growing up where the reader is able to see who Dillard was and who she became, following along on her journey and joining her in her childhood fascinations. Most of all, the book is a reminder of what it is like to be a child.

For the most part, the book did not contain any particularly interesting subjects or exciting events. As an example, Dillard writes extensively about her interest in collecting rocks and this becomes an ongoing topic in the book. While it might seem that such a subject would make the book uninteresting, it managed to become a positive feature. This occurred for two main reasons. The first is that it made it clear that this is who Dillard was and that this is what her childhood was like. Dillard comes across as a quiet child with slightly strange interests and her expression of these interests shows that she is being herself. In short, she is recalling her childhood realistically and without feeling a need to add any excitement to it. This creates a strong sense of truth to the story. The second main reason that Dillard turns what could be a boring narrative into an interesting one is that her strong interests in the rocks is a reminder of the curiosity of childhood. Dillard describes how she read books on rocks, and how she wondered why certain rocks were certain colors, and how she tested the hardness of each rock. The rocks themselves may not be particularly interesting, but Dillard's fascination with them is. For the reader, her fascination with them shows how childhood is filled with things to wonder about and discover. While the reader may not have rocks as their own focus, the fascination itself is still something that can be related to.

Dillard's attention to detail is another positive feature of the book. She…

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