Are there really hidden messages in children’s books or are certain adults just determined to impose their own subtext? From BBC Culture:
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As a child many of my favourite books had food as a theme. One in particular told the story of a boy who helped save his local burger bar by becoming a gastro-sleuth to track down a lost secret ingredient.
Long after losing track of the book and forgetting its title, I found myself in Edinburgh to interview Alexander McCall Smith. He was already the mega-selling author of The No 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, but years earlier, he had published a few children’s books. There among them on a shelf was The Perfect Hamburger.
It was my book. Except that it wasn’t – not really. While burgers do indeed feature in lip-smacking detail, this time it was clear to me that The Perfect Hamburger is actually a tale of corporate greed and the fate of small businesses forced to compete with big chains.