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Jane St. Anthony


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When I was in third grade, I had my first eye exam—of which I remember nothing. But I remember that the eye drops blurred my vision and I was told not to read for several hours.

But I hadn’t finished The Boxcar Children.

So I came home and sat in my father’s enormous armchair in the living room, where I could read in secret and hear what my parents were doing.

What a privilege it is to read.


Books invite us to glimpse other worlds and other lives—President Garfield or Malcolm X, Jane Eyre or Anne Shirley, Rohinton Mistry’s A Fine Balance or Alice Munro’s short stories. What a privilege it is to meet so many people and feel the injustice and struggles or the beauty and connections in their lives.

The eye exam, I don’t remember. I’ll never forget The Boxcar Children.

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