Some of my favorite childhood memories were of going to the library on hot summer days (yeah, air conditioning!) and getting to check out books. My frugal family did not have a ton of money, and I can't recollect a single visit to a toy store or being allowed an impulse buy at the grocery store. Ever. Most of what I played with had already been through my two big sisters. There wasn't a Barbie left in the house that didn't have her face scribbled on with permanent marker "make-up" and her lovely, silky Barbie hair, if it wasn't completely pulled out, was ruthlessly trimmed short and lopsided. I mostly played outside with my little brother.
The realization that anything can happen in a book was a big one for me. I was a daydreamer. The middle of five kids. I found the confines of rules and restrictions inconvenient on some days, unbearable on others. Books opened up new dimensions to my fantasy world of play. The Wonderful Thing About Hiccups blends three lasting impressions from childhood:
1. Libraries are wonderful places.
2. Books offer a world of escape where anything is possible.
3. Being a little sister can really suck.