“Lies, my boy, are known in a moment. There are two kinds of lies, lies with short legs and lies with long noses. Yours, just now, happen to have long noses.”
Amateur Reader (Tom) at Wuthering Expectations and Amanda at Simpler Pastimes mentioned that they found a rather educating tone in Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women. To a certain degree I felt the same when reading Pinocchio. It wasn’t that bad but now and then a little lecturing came through indeed. The period of time when these books were published (Le avventure di Pinocchio in 1883) possibly didn’t allow them to be without any pedagogical purpose. I mean even today there is some kind of contained moralizing or educational intention in works of children’s literature. Viewed in this light the raised index finger in Pinocchio keeps within reasonable bounds.
I was surprised again how much I had forgotten of Collodi’s classic. I already noticed this when reading Die Schneekönigin. With Pinocchio this is particularly inexplicable when one considers that I had a record of Pinocchio which I heard over and over in those days. As an example I mistakenly thought that the both rascals, the fox and the cat, would appear much more often in the story than they actually did in the end. I remembered them as a kind of recurring catastrophe with an always bad outcome for Pinocchio. Also, I totally forgot about the good Fairy, who acts as a good adviser and as a mother-figure for Pinocchio.
I borrowed Pinocchio from my local library and got the edition of the Sauerländer publishing house. The most beautiful thing beside the actual story were the artful and elaborate illustrations by book artist Roberto Innocenti. They are so opulent and detailed that you don’t know where you should start looking. I found myself stop reading again and again to look at those adorable pictures.
Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi (Sauerländer, 2005)