Books: Kids Are Us!

"Burdleburbleslurpleslurpleburbleburdleslurp," said the clam, more or less.

It is a well-established fact that one of the main reasons for writing children's literature is that it offers so many chances for dialogue like that. (Just try to work that sentence into a romance novel.) Michael Chabon, who won the Pulitzer Prize last year for The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, is a novelist who can fashion an elegant grownup story as if it were a piece of soft aluminum. But the opportunity to plunge into the burdleburple of sheer fantasy is one reason he wrote Summerland (Hyperion/Miramax; 500 pages), the kind...

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