Monday, December 1, 2008

The Mixed Up Files at the Met

From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler is a beloved children's novel by E.L. Konigsburg. The story takes place at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where a brother and sister go to hide after running away from home.

I read the book as a child and never forgot the excitement of a tale about two children living in a museum. When I moved to New York and revisited the Met, I knew it was time to read the book again. I could just imagine sleeping in one of the beautiful beds in a period room at the Met, or hiding in the bathroom to avoid the guards at the end of the day, or bathing in the fountain and discovering change at the bottom to use for lunches, and then there's the mystery of course — an angel sculpture possibly made by Michelangelo — that the children have made their mission to solve. Re-reading the book rekindled the magic of The Met for me, so much so that I felt compelled to give my copy to a young girl in the park one day.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art has even published a "Museum Kids" brochure about the book.

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