A beautiful, imaginative classic of children's lit...

Where the Sidewalk Ends - Shel Silverstein

This book is firmly embedded in my sub-consciousness. It doesn't pander to children the way so many books for children are written today. In its collection of poems,Sidewalk dares to mix humor and mischief with darkness and shadows. What, for example, is a child to think of the sibling rivalry exhibited in "For Sale"? Or the greed on display in "Peanut-butter Sandwich"? Or the insidious threat of the Yipiyuk? I think most of the really great children's lit has that element of darkness to it: Where the Wild Things Are, The Cat in the Hat, the Grimm folk tales, the work of Roald Dahl. It gives these stories something to ponder outside the safe boundaries that parents and teachers have made for them. Silverstein is right up there with the greats.