King Matt the First
Being rather fond of Polish literature lately, I have to confess how I had never heard before about this book as well as its author.
This ignorance of mine made the surprise even greater.
And yet King Matt is apparently a milestone in children books in Poland, while Janusz Korczak himself was a famous pedagogist with an interesting pers...more
Were one to associate a book and a fictional character with Janusz Korczak, it would certainly be Krol Macius, King Matthew. His likeness appeared on a series of Polish stamps commemorating his creator, along with a German post card. He saw himself as a leader, through the eyes of the child, King Matt. This is especially true of the often-related accounts of his final march through the Warsaw Ghetto, in silent protest providing comfort to the...more
King Matt the First is a story about a prince who becomes king at a young age. Obviously he has no idea what a king is supposed to do, so he starts off doing wacky things like making a huge doll for a random girl he meets, then runs off to war to play soldier. Later he creates a children's parliament, where children can govern themselves however they see fit, which of course leads to all sorts of trouble. Somewhere in the middle he befriends an African...more
Then, the introduction to the book (written by a person I personally h...more
I am about two-thirds finished with this book. I love it and would give it five stars - but need to warn my peers out there. There are a few swear words worth editing if reading aloud but it doesn't go on through the book (one chapter that I have read needed editing.)
As I read I imagine a kindly aging man reading this story aloud to the orphans as the Author is said to have done. I am touched at how well he weaved the trial of times into the story without actually talking about it. (the Holocaus...more
The story of Korczak's demise at the hands of Nazis is h...more
Although my library puts the book in the children's section, I'd call it an adult book that happens to have a child protagonist. The book was first published in 1923 and was one of twenty novels by child advocate Henryk Goldsz...more
This book was one of my favorites when I was little, although I remember it being really sad. I was very affected by melancholy when I was small.
Anyway, often think about this book and am about to re-read it for inspiration for something - that's got to be worth something, no?
I'll update the review once I am done with the book.
The characters are rich and complex - there are few in this book that you can either place on a pedestal or wholeheartedly...more
What makes this book more poignant is the author was writing this around the time of the second world war and died in Treblinka rather than leave the children he was caring for.
He was born Henryk Goldszmit in Warsaw on July 22, 1878. During his youth, he played with children who were poor and lived in bad neighborhoods; his passion for helping disadvantaged youth continued into his adulthood. He studied medicine and also had a prom...more