Dan's Reviews > Donald Has a Difficulty

Donald Has a Difficulty by Peter F. Neumeyer
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's review
May 06, 10

bookshelves: short-stories, visual-art
Read on May 06, 2010 — I own a copy, read count: 1

In addition to narrating how Donald has a splinter removed from his knee, Donald Has a Difficulty comments on the power of the imagination. Peter F. Neumeyer’s story is appropriate for small children; however, Gorey’s pictures will also be of interest for older readers because of the fictional world they represent. In addition to the size of the furniture, for instance, the absence of toys from the pictures implies that Donald lives among surroundings that were not constructed with children in mind. Moreover, the lack of variation in some of the pictures suggests that Donald’s world is one of a constrained, almost Victorian rigidity that children (and probably most adults) today would find stultifying. In a way, then, Gorey’s images allude to (and satirize) a world in which there would be few books o f this type (one supposes that Donald’s reading would include works by writers like Thomas Macaulay and Thomas CarlyleCharles Dickens and Robert Louis Stevenson having been proscribed as deleterious for impressionable young minds). Additional note: even the Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publishing Data is amusing, as it classifies this work under “Wounds, injuries—Fiction.”

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