Bridge to Terabithia
by Katherine Paterson
Loved the movie! Loved the book even more! Even though I read the last two chapters with tears streaming down my face!
I rarely ever read a book after I have seen a movie as I find I no longer use my imagination when reading, but rely on the images I already have from the movie. But I decided to make an exception when I saw Bridge to Terabithia at my local library. I loved the movie so much I picked it up just hoping the book proved to be as good. It was actually better.
Katherine Paterson has written a beautiful story told by ten year old Jess, a boy trying to find out where he fits in in the world. When Leslie moves into the house down the lane Jess finally finds someone he can relate to. Leslie is different and imaginative, and she is more fearless than most boys. They find a special place over the creek near their homes, which Leslie turns into the magical world of Terabithia. Here the two of them build their castle and rule their land. Here with Leslie Jess can be the fearless creative person he longs to be. But nothing lasts forever, and Jess soon finds that the person he was in Terabithia was there inside him all along.
Even as an adult I can identify with Jess and Leslie, children who are not quite in the mainstream. This story of their developing friendship and how they relate to the rest of the world is engrossing, and the twist at the end is bitter sweet. This really is a beautiful book, and if I had a must read list this would be on it.