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Illustrations by Sophie Blackall

Today I bring to you the first and only children’s book written by Aldous Huxley. Yes, he wrote a children’s book! The author best known for Brave New World has something to say to children. The story was written as a Christmas gift to his niece Olivia de Haulleville in 1944. I have to confess that I did not read this book when I was young since it was only republished in 2011. When I found the book at the university’s library, I was quite intrigued. What vision of the world could Aldous Huxley share with children?

The Crows of Pearblossom tells the story of  Mr. and Mrs. Crow who cannot have little crows of their own. The reason being that everyday a Rattlesnake eats Mrs. Crow’s eggs. How will Mr. Crow save the day? That is the premise of the story. You will have to read how Mr. Crow manages, with the help of Old Man Owl, to defeat the Rattlesnake. Let’s just say that he uses the skillful powers of deceit.

The broader point that Aldous Huxley tries to make with The Crows of Pearblossom is that the decision of childbearing should be left to the mother and father. They are the ones responsible for the bearing and rearing of their offspring. Sometimes there will be “snakes” that would like to take away this miracle, children, from mothers and fathers, but parents with a little ingenuity can overcome these evil forces. Because there is nothing more beautiful than a numerous family!

 

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