Monday, June 30, 2008

The Hungry Thing

The Hungry Thing
Jan Slepian & Ann Seidler ~ Richard E. Martin ~ Follett, 1967

Sometimes I've thought it might be nice to go through life sitting there with a giant sign around my neck that reads FEED ME. Ha!

never owned this one as a kid, but I have a vague memory of the giant beast with his gaping mouth and bottomless stomach. My paperback copy now is a 50 cent estate sale find (scored with a couple of first edition Richard Scarry Busytown hardbacks!), and has since gone into high rotation around these parts. When a mysterious creature comes to town armed only with a sign and an appetite, the townspeople have some trouble figuring out just what it is this beast is hungry for.

"He's underfed. Have some bread,"
Said a lady dressed in red.

"It seems to me he'd like some tea,"
Said a fellow up a tree.

"A bit of rice might be nice,"
said a baby sucking ice.

The Hungry Thing just shook his head
and pointed to the sign that said Feed Me.

The townspeople tried again.
"What would you like to eat?" asked the townspeople.

"Feetloaf," answered the Hungry Thing.

"Feetloaf!" cried the townspeople.
"How do you eat it? What can it be?"

All the wise men in the village can't answer that question, and of course, it's the town's tiniest tot who comes to the rescue. As I imagine it is with all children, my son loves it when the little guy comes out on top. I love it when a book asks you to not judge a monster by its cover. That said, I think I'll go cook up some shmancakes for the boy... with gollipops and hookies for dessert. Yum!

Also by:
Ding-Dong, Bing-Bong


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Great Monday Give: Lion

I'll get right to the point. Today's Great Monday Give book is a special one indeed ~ Lion by William Pène du Bois. For your chance to win this mighty fine (though slightly worn) paperback edition, please comment on this post by midnight, Sunday ~ July 6th. I love giving books away that I've picked up cheap just for the hell of it, so comment for your chance to win this really, really cool and cosmic tale about how heaven created the animals.

As for last week's Give... Once again, I used the highly-technical blind scroll and point method to find a winner... so let's give it up for Rachael ~ the new owner of a fine copy of Make Way for Ducklings. She had this to say about books in general...

"I LOVE reading and books in general (which is why I got my master's in lit!). When my husband and I got married he kept suggesting that I just check things out from the library rather than buying--fortunately he's come around since then. :-) But since he's still in grad school, I'm scouring garage sales and thrift stores to fill our bookcases these days and keep my two little girls in fresh reading material."

Now you can add one more to your collection, Rachael!! Please shoot me an e-mail at, and I will get the book out to you ASAP via the slow boat to China.

Once again, thanks for reading all... enjoy the posts this week, and check back next Monday for more free book fun!

Friday, June 27, 2008

The Rainbow Goblins

The Rainbow Goblins
by Ul de Rico/ published 1978 by Warner Books

As a child of the 70s, I'm wondering how I missed this one (and it's still in print for heavens sake!) When I was in Santa Fe last week, I met an illustrator who showed me her copy from childhood. All I can say is WOW. I'm not absolutely sure of this, but The Rainbow Goblins must have a cult following. The paintings are bizarre, but absolutely spectacular... the story truly ingenious.

Once there was a land that lived in fear of seven goblins. They were called the Rainbow Goblins and each had his own colour, which was also his name: Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo and Violet. Yellow, being the craftiest, was their chief. The goblins lived on colour -- they prowled the valleys and climbed the highest mountains looking for rainbows, and when they found one, they caught it in their lassoes, sucked the colours out of it and filled their bellies with its bright liquid.

Yea, so these Rainbow Goblins like to eat the colors of the rainbow, see. So they travel to the Valley of the Rainbow to gorge themselves silly. They journey through a lush landscape and dream of devouring rainbows and hatch a sinister plan. However, leave it to the moon and all of his friends of the forest and valley to thwart their madness. I thought the boy might be spooked by the goblins a little bit (they are pretty freaky), but so far he loves to find their bright little faces sneaking around the pages.

The author (full name -- Count Ulderico Gropplero di Troppenburg) illustrated a handful of books including this one and a sequel called The White Goblin published in '96. He was also one of the major design contributors to the '84 film The Neverending Story. From his jacket photo, he is kinda a hotty too, but that's really neither here nor there.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Bartholomew and the Oobleck

Bartholomew and the Oobleck
by Dr. Seuss/ published 1949 by Random House

How did it take 30 years for me to reunite with the oobleck!?! When I was really, really little -- even before I could read -- I would pull this one off the shelf at the bookstore and freak myself out. I never actually read the book, but the pictures totally scared the crap out of me.

I finally purchased it at a used book store a few days go and read it to my son for the first time yesterday. Man, did he dig it. I've never seen him more riveted by a book and jacked up. And frankly, I was pretty jacked too. This story is awesome on so many different levels that I could write a thesis about its awesomeness. Really, this just might be my favorite Dr. Seuss story EVER.

So there's the king see... and he gets tired of always looking at the rain, the sun, the snow and the fog that come down from the sky... and he wants something to come down in his kingdom that no other kingdom has... so he calls his evil magicians together, and urges them to create something the world has never seen...

For a moment they stood thinking, blinking their creaky eyes.
Then they spoke a word..."Oobleck."
"Oobleck...?" asked the King. "What will it look like?"
"Won't look like rain. Won't look like snow.
Won't look like fog. That's all we know.
We just can't tell you any more.
We've never made oobleck before."

The foreboding is deliciously sinister. The series of events as they unfold -- completely engulfing. It is a lesson in climate change and the outcomes of doing horrible things to the natural world. (As well as being a selfish pig and learning to say you're sorry.)

There is this page boy named Bartholomew who -- even as the oobleck is hitting the fan and people are getting stuck in the muck -- pulls it together to give the king such an empowering tongue lashing... wow. The drama is impeccable, and the climax, as good as any I've seen. We've had three reads since yesterday -- "Mommy, where's the book about the gunk?" -- and mark my words, 20 years from now, this will be one of the ones that floats to the top of his memory, time and time again. A thousand thumbs way, way up.

Also by:
McElligot's Pool
The Lorax
Come Over to My House
Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are?

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Sky Was Blue

Charlotte Zolotow with pictures by Garth Williams/ published 1963 by Harper and Row

Always loving the Garth, especially when it comes with the one-two punch of Zolotow. His sweet girls with their feathery hair and pinched, little lips are truly darling. This one is overflowing with nostalgia when a girl and her momma look at an old photo album and take a walk down memory lane back three generations. Discussing things like the dress her grandmother wore, the doll her great-grandmother had, and the especially awesome 50s/60s modern house her mom grew up in. (I think this book might have been written in future-tense if you know what I mean.)

The little girl
closed the photograph album and leaned against her mother.
"Is that all?" said the little girl.
"No," said her mother.
"Someday, you'll be showing your picture to your little girl,
and you will be telling her that...
the sky will always be blue.
Grass will always be green.
Snow will always be white and cold.
The sun will always be warm and yellow.
And then," said her mother,
"you'll hug her too.

When these two get together, the themes are always so sentimental and dear, but sadly - as far as I can tell - very girl-oriented. Even still, my son gets all snugly at the end. Why, I got two cheek kisses and a hug around the neck just this morning from this book. I love anything that generates the mom/son warm fuzzies. (I know, I am getting too 60s-themed again... will try and dig back deeper for tomorrow.)

Also by:
Mr. Rabbit and the Lovely Present
Wait Til the Moon is Full
I Have a Horse of My Own
The Hating Book
Flocks of Birds
Do You Know What I'll Do?
The Rabbits' Wedding
Three Bedtime Stories
The Friendly Book

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

I Was Kissed by a Seal at the Zoo

Helen Palmer with photographs by Lynn Fayman/ published 1962 by Random House

I figured since I raved about the Boogle House, I needed to get some of Ms. Palmer's other books up here. Obviously, this book was made during an era when if you published a children's book, the San Diego Zoo would allow you to bring a bunch of school kids in to fondle the wildlife. Somehow I doubt this would happen now, even if you were the first Mrs. Dr. Seuss. Like Boogle House, I love the funny story illustrated by black and white photos contrasting against bright color pages ~ red, green, blue and yellow. Though, if I'm not mistaken, I believe the seal mentioned in the title is actually a sea lion. I guess technically, a sea lion is a seal, but I digress...

What would you do if you went to the zoo?
Well, I can tell you what I would do.
I would walk right up to the zoo keeper.
I would say,
"Please, may I play with your baby lion?"
"Yes," he would say,
"if the lion wants to play."

Didn't see until looking up just now that she killed herself in 1967 -- after 40 years of marriage to the Seuss man and a long struggle with cancer. That stinks. Sad that the two never had kids together (or apart) that could enjoy their books as much as mine does. Next up, Do You Know What I'm Going to Do Next Saturday? and Fish Out of Water. I'll get to them someday!

Also by:
Why I Built the Boogle House
Do you know what I'm going to do next Saturday?

Monday, June 23, 2008

Old Black Witch!

Old Black Witch!
Wende and Harry Devlin
Parents' Magazine Press, 1963
reprinted in 2012 by Purple House Press

Talk to any used book shop owner who deals in children's books, and they will tell you, this is one of the most requested titles. When I first started collecting vintage kids books, I searched endlessly for it using the words... "I'm not sure what the title is but it was about this witch, and on the cover she was flying out of a plate glass window on her broomstick." Quintessential 70s for sure. Some people have blasted Old Black Witch! and its authors for the use of the word "black" in the title, but all controversies aside, you gotta love those blueberry pancakes.

Soooo, when a boy and his momma buy an old house to open a tearoom, they are shocked by what they find hiding in the chimney.

Suddenly, SQUAWK! THUMP! And down from the chimney fell a big, black mess. It was covered with cobwebs and made terrible sounds. It stumbled out of the fireplace into the room. From its long, pointed hat to its long, pointed shoes, it was covered with ashes. It was a fright. It was furious. And it was an old black witch.

You see, the two had moved into her house, and she was having none of it. That is, till they make a deal, and before you know it, the old black witch is in the kitchen cooking up a blueberry storm and foiling two would-be robbers. My son particularly goes wild when the witch turns the bad guys into toads. It's nice when man and spooky spirit can live together in harmony.

Found our copy for $2.98. A steal for sure!

Also by:
How Fletcher Was Hatched
Old Witch Rescues Halloween
Old Witch and the Polka Dot Ribbon
Cranberry Thansgiving
The Wonderful Tree House


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Great Monday Give: Make Way for Ducklings

Hey everybody... The Great Monday Give has arrived once again. As you may or may not know, Monday is the day I give away an awesome vintage kids' book I've picked up in my travels. That said, this week's giveaway is a rather nice, over sized, used, but really really great, ex-library, hard copy of Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey. This is one of our faves, and it's a really sweet copy to boot. All you have to do to be entered to win is comment on this post before midnight ~ Sunday, June 29th. The winner will be announced on Monday, and so on and so on.

Moving on... the winner of last week's Give is gina bina who will be taking home a totally killer copy of Caps for Sale.

GB, please e-mail me your info at as quick as you please, and I will get it out to you as fast as I can via the slow boat to China.

Stay tuned later in the day for another review, and until then...

Oh yea, and be sure to check out my "guest mom" posts all this week on Design Mom.... which is a totally awesome blog run by - quite possibly - the coolest mom in Manhattan.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Little Blue and Little Yellow

Little Blue and Little Yellow
Leo Lionni
Mcdowell, Obolensky, 1959

As I mentioned in another post, Alexander and the Wind-up Mouse was one of the books that spooked me when I was little, but in a good way.... so it is surprising that so few of Lionni's books were on my radar way back when. You know though, growing up in small town America in the 70s really limited my exposure to things, so the fact that I even knew one book by most of the greats is probably still a good thing.

This one is a favorite (and a recommendation) of one of my son's close girlfriends. The story of two little dots and best friends -- Little Blue and Little Yellow. When the little dots get too close, Blue and Yellow make green and cause a world of confusiion for their parents.

Happily they hugged each other
and hugged each other
until they were green.
Then they went to play in the park.
They ran through a tunnel.
They chased little orange.
They climbed a mountain.
When they were tired
they went home.

Perhaps the moral of this sweet, sweet book is that sometimes it is OK if you get lost in another person, even if your parents disapprove. Or maybe it's that when two people mix, they make another person all together. Or maybe we all need to lose ourselves a little bit to find our way home. No matter. What it is is a cute little story about two dots that love each other, and my son digs it.

Also by:
Fish is Fish
Tico and the Golden Wings
Alexander and the Windup Mouse

Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Hat

The Hat
Tomi Ungerer ~ Four Winds Press, 1970

Tomi Ungerer is a wonderful, odd duck (who tweets rather than quacks), and I think it's safe to say that I'm in love with him. French-born Ungerer lived through the German occupation of Alsace, and in many ways, that childhood is reflected in his books. They have a childlike quality while still staying firmly cemented in many of life's unpleasantries. He was praised for his early children's books, but quit for two decades to create illustrations and books with themes of adult sexuality ~ hey, whatever floats your boat, man.

Hilarious erotic perversions aside, Crictor is still in my son's top 20 -- every snake he encounters gets named after the blasted boa -- and The Hat is equally a charmer.

There is a magic hat, see. And the head it chooses to land upon will have a flood of good fortune. When the hat settles on a penniless veteran, he does one good deed after another, becoming a national hero -- winning fame, fortune and a beautiful bride.

"Capitano Mallmorte!" he cried. "What is this all about!"

"We have trapped a band of cutthroats in their lair." replied the captain. "They refuse to surrender. Our cannons will soon blow their brains to reason."

"Don't shoot yet. Put me in charge and you shall capture them alive. Hat, hat!" ordered Badoglio. "To the chimney, quick!"

The hat took off and settled on top of the flue. Soon a white flag appeared. In clouds of smoke the brigands staggered out, one by one coughing and choking.

Ungerer sees people in a very unpretty way, but in a way that's real and charming and makes the players interesting rather than just cute. For instance, due to the main character's (Badoglio) thick black beard, you never see his mouth except as a small black circular shadow. Expressive with minimal expression. Too, my son loves the fact that this Badoglio guy has a small wheel for a foot and seems perfectly content to roll along in life. Out of print, paperback versions are readily available online, though the hardcover will cost you a bit more.

Featuring Ungerer's signature secret winks, can you guess who the hat is going to next in above picture scanned from the last page of the book? Spectacular.

Also by:
I Am Papa Snap and These Are My Favorite No Such Stories
The Mellops Strike Oil
Zarelda's Ogre
Seeds and More Seeds
The Three Robbers
Moon Man
Orlando The Brave Vulture
Christmas Eve at the Mellops'
The Beast of Monsieur Racine
Book of Various Owls

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

This Is Texas

This Is Texas
M. Sasek ~ Macmillian, 1967 ~ reprint by Universe, 2006

Much like Erdoes, people who appreciate design and illustration love this guy's books as evidenced around the blogosphere here, here and here.

I love this one in particular because it is all about Texas, of course... but even if you aren't a fan of the Lone Star State, it is just one in a series that includes amazing locations like London, Paris, Australia, Munich and more. Some have been reissued (like This Is Texas) but with the others, you'll have to track down a highly collectible vintage copy. Check out the illustrator's site for a complete list of all 18 books in the This Is series.

That said, my son loves this too tall tome because it is funny, the drawings are awesome, and it includes lots of cool tidbits on San Antonio and the rest of this amazing state.

Texans wear the word's most uncomfortable boots and are known to be the world's worst walkers. But who cares? In Wichita Falls everybody drives a Cadillac.

Funny stuff, right?

Texas has the roomiest mobile houses -- the hairiest goats -- the best-shaved hogs -- the juiciest steaks -- the humpiest bulls -- the most statuesque cows -- the wildest wild turkeys.

Make no mistake though, the series acts as a realio, trulio set of travelogues and guidebooks for tots ~ each book covering the major attractions and cultural history of the title city, country or state. A great gift for a kid about to go on a big adventure, or in our case, to help my son appreciate the magic in his own backyard.

Also by:
This is New York


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Tuesday, June 17, 2008


Hey guys. It is late, and I am just back from a family vacation in New Mexico. Sorry for the failure to post today, but travel is rough.

Special thanks to the couple of blogs who posted kind words on Vintage Kids' Books My Kid Loves this week ~ ohdeedoh, Meet me At Mikes and Crafty Vegan ~ bringing a ton of new friends into the fold. (If I missed anyone, please let me know. I'm gonna start sending shout-outs to those great folks who send the love our way!)

For all who just arrived, welcome. Book suggestions are not only appreciated, but they will actually be researched extensively and probably bought and reviewed by myself shortly.

Finally, I am totally psyched to say I'll be the "Guest Momming" on one of my very favorite blogs ~ Design Mom ~ all next week. Please tune in to discover some of the method to my madness.

Thanks again for reading everybody. Expect something awesome from the shelves in the AM!

Now to pass out...

Monday, June 16, 2008


Margret Rey with pictures by H.A. Rey/ published 1945 by Houghton Mifflin Co.

Brought to you by the husband and wife inventors of the world of Curious George, Spotty is in print after years of being out and tells the tale of a little bunny that gets a bum wrap because he looks different from the rest of his furry clan. When even momma gives him the diss because he has brown spots instead of snow white fur like his siblings, little Spotty runs away and finds there is a world of bigotry of another color waiting just outside his doorstep.

Mother Bunny and Aunt Eliza had a long talk. Mother Bunny was close to tears.

"How many did you say?" Aunt Eliza asked.

"Nine. Nine little bunnies, born last Friday. Eight of them look just the way the others in the family look. Snow-white with pink eyes and pink ears. But the ninth..." Mother Bunny began to cry. "The ninth looks all different..."

Perhaps the racist theme is a little vague, but the message is clear. We are all people (or rabbits), and we all bleed when we get cut no matter what color our spots are. In today's anti-bully age, it's a good lesson to learn. Plus it has bunnies, and who doesn't love bunnies!?!

Also by:
Curious George Flies a Kite
Katy No-Pocket

Great Monday Give: Caps for Sale

Hey, hey, hey. Winning time is here again. The Great Monday Give for this week is an ex-library/ hard/ Reading Rainbow copy of Caps for Sale by Esphyr Slobodkina. Just comment on this post before midnight ~ Sunday, June 22, and you will be eligible to win this classic tale of monkeys and mayhem.

Last week's winner (in case you were tuning in to find out) is Naomi who has possibly the prettiest banner this side of Sunday. Congrats sista! Please e-mail me your info post-haste to, and I will rush out your prize ASAP via the slow boat to China.

I like to give books away because I'm like that. If I find an awesome classic for a song, I like to share the wealth rather than profit from it. So come back every Monday and comment, and soon you too could be the lucky winner of a used (but awesome) children's classic!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Stop That Ball!

Stop That Ball!
by Mike McClintock with illustrations by Fritz Siebel/ published 1959 by Random House

Stop That Ball! isn't wildly different from this duo's earlier and more famous creation -- A Fly Went By. But unlike the story about the fly that trouble follows, STB! survived two editions, only to find itself out-of-print in today's modern age. Regardless, it's worth tracking down the '59 edition to add to your collection. Fun, fun, fun in the form of a tether ball that goes awry and somehow manages to escape death by fire, baseball bat and cannon explosion.

I saw a house on fire ahead.
"My ball must not land there!" I said.
"For if it does, it's gone forever!
And I will never get it! Never!"

But then some water shot up high.
It hit my ball and made it fly.
Boy! Was I happy! This was fine!
Now I could get that ball of mine.

My son loves to read books like this that have nonstop action, and Siebel's red/green/black illustrations are so full of life and movement, it is hard not to get caught up in the antics. Love that dog too with the wagging tongue. Wish I'd had a pooch like that when I was wee.

Also by:
Who Took the Farmer's Hat
Tell Me Some More

Thursday, June 12, 2008

My Home

My Home
Renée Bartkowski with illustrations by ROFry/ published 1971 by Little Golden Books

Not sure what's up with this illustrator's name, but I imagine it has something to do with artistic individuality. That being the case, I'll let it be. (Though it does make me contemplate a legal name change to SCRibBla.)

Similarly themed to A House is a House For Me, this sweet Little Golden Book is all about the different sorts of homes for things and people. The tone makes me feel all snugly inside with good feelings, and during each read, my son usually hugs my neck tight and senses the warm fuzzies himself.

It doesn't matter at all if my home's on a hill,
Or down by the deep blue sea --
As long as it's filled with people I love,
And people who also love me.

Very 70s vibe throughout and lots and lots of animals to be ogled and enjoyed. (I apologize for the tape in the scan. This copy's been a little too loved if you know what I mean.) Copies a plenty available online.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The Rain Puddle

Rain Puddle
Adelaide Holl
illustrations by Roger Duvoisin
Lothrop, Lee & Shepard Co., 1965

Books, animals and water are my son's three great passions, and lucky for me, The Rain Puddle has them all. Kind of a Chicken Little story, yet instead of the sky falling, this chicken takes a drink from a puddle, sees her own reflection, and mistakes it for another chicken. Her rush to save the poor poultry from a watery grave has a domino affect on the other animals that goes a little something like this...

Turkey was eating corn in the barnyard.
"Come at once!" called plump hen.
"A hen is in the rain puddle."
Away turkey went to see for himself.
he cried when he looked in.
"It is not a plump hen.
It is a big, bright turkey gobbler!"

And so on and so on until it seems the entire barnyard is drowning. Funny stuff, and made even funnier for my son as a three-year-old because it makes him feel like he is in on the joke. Like he somehow has figured it out and outsmarted the animals, and that really gets his chest puffed up. There's nothing like watching my kid strut after a few readings of this one. Priceless stuff.

Also by:
Veronica and the Birthday Present
Petunia, Beware!
A Child's Garden of Verses
White Snow Bright Snow
Petunia's Christmas
The Old Bullfrog

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Caps for Sale

Caps for Sale
Esphyr Slobodkina
William R. Scott, 1940

I know this one is SUPER obvious, but it is one of the great GREATS and bears the amazing and unforgettable subtitle ~ A Tale of a Peddler, Some Monkeys and Their Monkey Business. (Plus, Caps for Sale is going to be the Great Monday Give book next week, but let's just keep that between us.)

In print for over 60 years, children's books really don't get better than this. Definitely in the top ten all time best. If you don't have it in your collection, buy it IMMEDIATELY here, here or here.

Once there was a peddler who sold caps.
But he was not like an ordinary peddler
carrying his wares on his back.
He carried them on top of his head.

Monkeys.... evil. Peddler... funny.

"You monkeys, you," he said,
shaking a finger at them,
"you give me back my caps."

So there are these monkeys see, and they steal this guy's caps see. And the peddler must use his extraordinary smarts to out-kid the kidders. Bonkers of hilarity. I can't imagine that as the Siberian-born author was creating this book she could have foreseen it lingering as long as it has. I mean really, check out these monkeys. Envisioning these plush toys back then would have been like the Wright brothers dreaming of a 747. Such a legacy!

Also by:
Pezzo the Peddler and the Circus Elephant
The Wonderful Feast
Little Dog Lost, Little Dog Found

Monday, June 9, 2008

Musicians Around the World

Musicians Around the World.
Richard Erdoes ~ MacGraw-Hill, 1973

As mentioned in a previous post, connoisseurs of midcentury illustration can't get enough of this guy, and perusing these pages, it is easy to see why. A pictorial journey across the musical landscape of the world, there are bagpipes piping, harpists harping, cavemen drumming and mariachis... well, mariaching... right up to a Sgt. Pepper-esk band jamming out big time.

If you're Hip
you dig the Big Beat.
It's what's happening all over the world.
The rock guitar is king.
Electric blast,
pounding beat,
flashing lights,
plenty of heat.
That's where it's at.

Since I am hoping to plant the musical seed in my kid, this one is a big winner for me. Not only is the book culturally vast, but it has introduced a ton of instruments into my son's lexicon that he would have otherwise never known about. Forget junior getting stuck with the tuba in band... how about the singing saw, conch trumpets and tinkly tubes? Peter Gabriel and David Byrne better watch out. There's a new world music lover on the scene!

Along with Policemen Around the World, I have yet to get my hands on Peddlers and Vendors Around the World to complete the Erdoes around-the-world trilogy. Keeping my eagle eyes out for those two cast into a Goodwill bin!

Also by:
Come Over to My House

Great Monday Give: Burt Dow Deep-Water Man

Yes, another week has escaped us, and it's time for the next Great Monday Give. As McCloskey has been the theme of late, I am offering up this used/ nice/ reading/ ex-library copy of Burt Dow Deep-Water Man. All you have to do to be entered to win is leave a comment on this post before midnight ~ Sunday, June 15. I will randomly select a winner and mail the book to you free-of-charge just because you are awesome.

As for last week's give, Springtree Road is the random winner of Chanticleer and the Fox. Congrats! Please e-mail me your mailing info at, and I will post the book out to you ASAP.

Stay tuned later in the day for a new review gang-of-twenty (another Richard Erdoes!), and thanks again for being you!

Friday, June 6, 2008

Little Peewee or, Now Open the Box

Little Peewee
Dorothy Kunhardt with illustrations by J.P. Miller/ published 1948 by Little Golden Books

Goodwill find of the month! Written by the creator of the immortal Pat the Bunny, there are a couple of lines in these pages that had me literally busting a gut this morning.

He is so teeny, weeny
that everybody loves him.
And that was true.
EVERYBODY loved little Peewee.
There was a clown with two heads,
but one of them was probably make-believe.
He loved little Peewee.
There was the small man who could juggle
three ducks all at the same time.
He loved little Peewee.
There was the man siting on a chair,
on top of six tables just going to fall down, and blowing soap bubbles.
He loved little Peewee.

It goes on for a few pages like this, and man, oh, man... is it hilarious! So yea, Peewee is this tiny, tiny dog (and you know how I love tiny dogs) who is the circus cat's meow until he grows too big and gets ousted from the show. Little do they know though, that Peewee has just started to grow... and grow he does. Quite simply put, this one is just TOO GOOD.

Illustration Station has a ton of scans from the book, and as it mentions, the title was originally published in 1934 as Now Open the Box but was re-illustrated by the Disney-veteran Miller for Golden Books. The one I bought is a Weekly Reader Book Club edition that is two books in one and includes Sylvester: The Mouse with the Musical Ear.

I was looking for a bio of Ms. Kunhardt and stumbled upon the amazing MOST REQUESTED page on the website of Loganberry Books in Ohio. Geez, it makes me WANT WANT WANT soooooo bad! And speaking of I want.... Does it ever end!?!

Also by:
Lucky Mrs. Ticklefeather
The Little Red Hen
The Around the Year Storybook
Little Galoshes
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