Charlotte’s Web is a heart-warming tale by E. B. White about a barn yard full of talking, compassionate, benevolent animals and their struggles in a human-led world. The books begins with a young girl, Fern, being told that her father is going to kill a newly born pig. She races after him, begging him to spare the piglet, and he does. This little pig is called Wilbur, and Fern treats him as though he is her child, pushing him around in a pram, and bottle-feeding him until he gets bigger. However, as Wilbur is getting bigger, he has to be sold to a farmer who lives down the road. Both Fern and Wilbur are distraught by this change, but they soon learn that they can survive the separation and Fern visits Wilbur as often as she can.
Wilbur is now the centre of this intriguing story. In his new barn he meets a number of animal friends, including a Spider named Charlotte. Wilbur is fascinated by Charlotte’s webs and slightly terrified by the idea of her catching her food in her web and drinking their blood. Charlotte is far from frightening however and soon becomes Wilbur’s closest friend. The major plot twist of this book comes when the barn discovers that their farmer is fattening up Wilbur to kill for Christmas dinner! Wilbur becomes increasingly worried and Charlotte promises to work out a way for him to avoid his terrible fate.
Charlotte’s plan to save Wilbur is actually rather ingenious. She gets a farm animal to bring her human words so that she can weave their shape into her web! The first of these webs says ‘SOME PIG’, and this is linked immediately to Wilbur. He is thought a miracle pig and is discussed at great length, especially when Charlotte spins new words above his trough. Wilbur is even taken to a pig show and actually wins due to how spectacular he is! It would seem that he is saved! However, Charlotte is not well and the drama shifts onto her.
What is wrong with Charlotte? Will Wilbur be able to help her and she helped him? You’ll have to read the book to find out! Charlotte’s Web is a timeless classic and easy read for all you animal lovers out there! It’s a story full of wonderful friendships and crazy ideas that have a knack of working out perfectly. Indeed, a reader could learn a lot about how to relate to other people by reading about these ingenious animals!