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Happy 100th Birthday, Astrid Lindgren!

Astrid Lindgren, born November 14th, 1907, is best known for her Pippi Longstocking series. However, as much as I liked Pippi*, two of Lindgren's other novels really captured my imagination as I was growing up, and I really believe that these titles never got the attention that they deserved. These two novels are Lotta on Troublemaker Street and Ronia, the Robber's Daughter.

Lotta on Troublemaker Street

Lotta wakes up one morning from a bad dream, convinced that her brother and sister were trying to hurt Bamsie (her favorite stuffed-animal). Upset that no one in her family believes her (and that her mother is trying to make her wear an itchy sweater), Lotta decides to run away.

This short, easy-to-read novel will appeal to fans of the Ramona books (or perhaps, today's Junie B. Jones fans), and it is also wonderful when read aloud.

Ronia, The Robber's Daughter

The first time I read Ronia, I was in Fifth Grade, and I just remember being completely enthralled.

I really can't do this novel justice in a short review, but it is essentially the story of the friendship between Ronia and Birk, children of rival bands of robbers -- a young Romeo and Juliet, in a way (though with a happy ending). And, although romance was never specifically mentioned, my nine-year-old self found the novel to be incredibly romantic .

With strong roots in the folk-tale tradition, this novel transports readers to a completely original world. Highly recommended, this novel has stood up to multiple re-readings**

*I was actually Pippi for Halloween when I was 4

**Okay, fine, I give in. I'll read it again. (and maybe that time, I'll write a real review)


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