For as long as man can remember, the concept of time has been a constant ticking in the background. If one is given life, one must also give it up.
Or, so Winnifred Foster thought before she met the Tucks.
"Tuck Everlasting" is a children's fantasy novel by Natalie Babbit, and it tells the tale of a girl named Winnie and her adventures with the mysterious, immortal Tuck family.
Not only can the idea of immortality be intriguing to a younger audience, it shows many different perspectives of how it can be beneficial and detrimental because of how each person in the Tuck family deals with it.
While the younger brother, Jesse, doesn't seem to mind immortality, it is a constant reminder to the older brother, Miles, of how his once contented life with a wife and children shattered into oblivion.
Through this novel, young readers are able to gather a thoughtful perspective on death and the possibility of living forever which is something interesting. Until the idea of immortality is brought into perspective, death appears to be final; without it, what is life? And which would be better? An end or an endless continuation?
Winnie Foster, at the young age of ten, is faced with these questions and many more when Jesse Tuck asks her to drink some water he bottled from the spring when she turns 17. After Jesse and his family disappeared, she heard no more from the Tucks.
It's possible that something Angus Tuck said to her was what persuaded her to make the choice of not drinking the spring water.
"Don't be afraid of death; be afraid of an unlived life. You don't have to live forever, you just have to live.”
Though this is classified as a children's novel, this kind of advice is timeless and delivered in a humble, understandable way. It's a message that sticks with young readers, even if they don't completely grasp it at first. Death might be the end, but it's what one does with his life that counts.
It's great advice to live by and the fact that this advice was given to a 10 year old girl from a man who had lived for lifetimes, makes it all more important to heed.