Miss Esta Maude's Secret
story and pictures by W. T. Cummings
One of those books people always ask me about but I'd never set eyes on until I scored it at a library sale a while back. It's a book that tends to be worth a lot of money when you can find it, and on the first read it was obvious why it would've stuck in the minds of so many children decade after decade. I have no idea who this author is or why this book is so highly collectible, but the story is unforgettable. It's kinda like if Batman was an old woman and instead of a lot of superpower-enabling devices, she just has a really, really fast car.
Esta Maude drove a little black car. Everyone in town called it "Miss Esta Maude's Machine." She never drove over fifteen miles an hour and obeyed every traffic rule. "What a dull life Miss Esta Maude must have!" everyone said. If Esta Maude heard them she just smiled -- because Esta Maude had a secret.
Well, the little school teacher's secret is that Miss Esta Maude likes to drive very, VERY fast in a little red racing car she keeps hidden away in her barn. In the wee hours of the night, she revs up and takes off on adventures that save sheep and lost little children and women in labor. Secret identities are AWESOME and even more awesome if you imagine your teacher to have one.
Doecdoe posted on another book by this author, The Girl in the White Hat, but I couldn't find any information on the artist. If anyone has any info on this book or perhaps even a scan of the dust jacket, I'd be much obliged. (A guess: W.T. is E.E.'s pen name and this was his swan song? Maybe it's even a long lost brother. Ha! Wouldn't that be sweet.)