But reading these in my forties, these are so very clearly books for children: as much as everyone loves them, as much as I love them, some things distracted me from the pleasure of reading them. The repetitive character ticks are annoying, although a young child would probably not notice them. The heroes, Gwydion and Adion especially, are so cartoonily noble that it became hard to take those characters seriously. Also, sometimes the simple sentence construction aids the story, and sometimes it hinders it. And did I mention that the important action scenes very often take place off stage?
But I still love these stories, although sometimes nostalgically. I do.
Lessons learned? Ah, this is hard. As much as I love a The Book of Three and all of these other stories, the characters, and their settings, it is clear that Craft supports and strengthens a story. It should not be showy and obvious (and in the next book, I think it is, but that is also part of the story, so it works for the most part). Why? I steal from “Writing Great Sentences“ – Style is not meant to impress; it is meant to express!
Lloyd Alexander, with affection.