A parenting highlight: The Chronicles of Prydain


I don’t read fiction as often as I once did, but in my childhood I often could be found reading during recess, seated on the asphalt by the school playground, or- in class with a book hidden behind my desk. Now, many years later, as the father of an eight-years-old daughter, I’ve been thinking a lot about those children’s books I once enjoyed as a child; and I’ve been purchasing some for her.

Anyway, some time ago, my wife purchased (among many other books in Russian) the Chronicles of Narnia. English, of course, is more prevalent in our daughter’s life, but it’s important to both her parents that she also be fluent in Russian. Therefore, despite the Chronicles of Narnia having been one of my own childhood favorites, I deliberately did not purchase them in the original English – because I want our child to practice her Russian.

However, another set of books that I immediately thought of, which I had absolutely adored as a boy, was the Chronicles of Prydain. So, a few months ago, I ordered these as much for myself as for my daughter and then started reading the first book for my own enjoyment.

Reading to my child

At first, upon seeing my pleasure, my child asked me to read the first book to her; but she tired of it (or maybe got distracted), and I ended up finishing that volume on my own. However, when she saw me eagerly reading the second volume, she once again asked me to read aloud to her; and, unexpectedly to me, she became deeply absorbed in the storyline and characters.

Following our completion of the second volume together, she started reading the first book on her own, and we continued reading the third book together, and then the fourth, and then the fifth , and now- a sixth book of short stories with background information. Suffice it to say that my daughter has really fallen in love with the Chronicles of Prydain!

A tender moment

One particularly tender moment came upon our completion of the fifth and final book of the series. Now… keep in mind that throughout the series, my daughter constantly laughed aloud at the characters’ jokes and sarcastic retorts; and she worried and cried at their misfortunes. That’s what I mean by saying that she really got into the Chronicles of Prydain.

So, when we reached the end of the fifth book, and some of the main characters permanently parted ways, my child was quite distraught. This was what I thought she was complaining about when she said, “What? No!”

However, much to my delight, she explained that what was most upsetting was that we had completed the entire series… that she would be parting with the characters herself. She even begged me to read all five of the volumes to her again; and, at her mother’s suggestion, decided to write a sixth book to continue the series (assigning me, of course, the role of ‘assistant author’)!

79 thoughts on “A parenting highlight: The Chronicles of Prydain”

  1. I love that series myself and have reread it as an adult. My 28-year-old daughter just recently bought herself the set. Rereading childhood favorites is a pleasure not to be missed!

      1. I reread that series this past year and immensely enjoyed it. Another favorite of mine, though not a series, is Abel’s Island by William Steig. Its main character is a mouse, and I keep thinking I should recommend it to Muri. There are so many good juvenile books to like! Perhaps you could do a post of your favorite juvenile fiction? (Then I could respond with a list of mine.) ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Thank you for the wonderful post. It was delightful to read your experience of sharing these stories with your daughter. Taranโ€™s adventures also made a deep impression on me. Iโ€™m surprised to see people in the comments that donโ€™t know of it, I think many people do, but only as โ€œThe Black Cauldronโ€ Disney adaptation. The books are truly one of the best fantasy series ever written, in my experience.

    1. โค๏ธ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป Marina ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿปโค๏ธ ~ mine too! Although rereading them as an adult made me appreciate how simple and linear the plots are.

      Thank you,

  3. This is wonderful!! Loved reading about you and your daughter reading together! There is nothing like it–to enter into another world through reading and share it with someone you love. (I bet she will be a writer. ๐Ÿ™‚

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