cover image Long Ago When I Was

Long Ago When I Was

Edith Nesbit, E. Nesbit. Dial Books, $14.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-8037-0476-3

The only autobiography that the author of The Railway Children and Five Children and It, etc., left behind was this novella-length work, a generous and sympathetic look at the forces in her childhood that both shaped early fears or implanted a lifelong love for the outdoors. Nesbit's memories of boarding school and French lessons are set down as clearly as if they were recent experiences, so detailed are the stories, but she hastens to counsel readers not to worry for her, an adult who survived those terrors. Three elementsthe text, Ardizzone's line drawings and Buchanan's delicate watercolor paintingscombine in a beautifully designed volume, meant for young and old fans of Nesbit's stories or for those who simply want to know what it was like long ago. All ages. (April)