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Children's book; about a witch's life

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Edited: Oct 17, 2014, 4:54pm Top

I read a book when I was 9 or 10 (1990 or 1991) that was like a handbook for witches. It was hardback, the pages were glossy and fully illustrated.
One page talked about how a witch's favorite weather is rain and gloom. Another page showed a witch's house and you could see in all the rooms and how it was decorated.
Unfortunately, that is all I remember. Please help, I have been trying to find this book for years.
I do know it is NOT the book by Malcolm Bird.
Thank you to anyone who can help me!

Update: Here is a list of the suggested books that are NOT what I am looking for but may be of interest to you...

The Witch's Catalog by Norman Bridwell
Witches and Witchcraft by Adrienne Jack
Winnie the Witch
Witches' Lost Spellbook by Joan Cass
Hubble Bubble: A Book of Witches and Wizards by John Patience
Witches Four by Marc Brown
Wacky Book of Witches
The Little Witch's Cookbook
Witches by Colin Hawkins
Witch's Handbook by Monica Carretero
What Witches Do by Shelagh McGee
Die Kleine Hexe by Otfried Preussler

Mar 26, 2010, 10:42am Top

I think I remember reading this as well. I found Winnie the Witch that has a two page layout of her house. Could this be what you are looking for?

Mar 26, 2010, 5:13pm Top

While that book looks totally awesome, it's not the same book. This book was almost like a handbook for witch's. It wasn't really a story. I wish I could remember more, but it's been about 19 years since I've read that book, so my memory is vague.

Mar 26, 2010, 9:55pm Top

Might it be The Witch's Handbook by Malcolm Bird? It was published in 1988, so would have been around in 1990 or 91.

Mar 26, 2010, 10:00pm Top

It's not. I already own that book, and it is not the book I'm looking for.

Mar 26, 2010, 10:02pm Top

Oops, sorry, I missed that line in your original post. :-)

Mar 27, 2010, 7:03am Top

Your description makes me think of a picture book that rhymes though you don't actually say it is. Is it?

Mar 27, 2010, 1:34pm Top

It might rhyme in places. My strongest memory of the book is page where it talks about a witch's favorite weather and I believe the witch is wearing rain boots. All the pages are glossy and color illustrated. A lot of dark colors...blacks, grays, things like that.

Apr 21, 2010, 3:16pm Top

I'm beginning to feel this may be the one unfindable book. Come on LibraryThing patrons...don't let me down!!! :)

May 16, 2010, 2:19am Top

Could it have been something in Norman Bridwell's witch series? It sounds really familiar to me, and also reminds me a little of The Witch's Catalog.

May 19, 2010, 4:17am Top

K, I looked up Norman Bridwell, and it doesn't look right. The book was hardback and glossy. And I remember the colors being kind of dark. But thanks so much for the suggestion, I was beginning to think no one was going to help me anymore.

May 19, 2010, 10:20am Top

How about Witches and Witchcraft by Adrienne Jack?

It's an illustrated children's book, 48 pages long.

May 19, 2010, 10:24am Top

Actually, Adreinne Jack's book is titled Witches and Witchcraft/ (Easy Read Fact Book)

May 20, 2010, 4:38pm Top

The tag says it's non fiction, and the book I'm looking for is DEFINITELY fiction. Thanks for all the great suggestions, but I'm slowly losing hope in ever finding it.

Jun 18, 2010, 9:18pm Top

This message has been deleted by its author.

Jun 18, 2010, 9:23pm Top

I don't suppose it might be (Die kleine Hexe) by Otfried Preussler? It means 'The little witch' in English, but when I posted that earlier, it linked to 'The Wednesday Witch' which is a different book altogether. It might have a different title in the english translation. The cover is definitely dark and glossy!

Jun 18, 2010, 9:24pm Top

Sorry, wrong brackets, Die kleine Hexe.

Jul 7, 2010, 3:07pm Top

Unfortunately that is not it. The illustrations have a "cleaner" look, for lack of a better descriptor. Thanks so much for the suggestion though.

Jan 4, 2011, 10:37pm Top

Bump. Hoping new people have signed on and just might know the answer. I even contacted the school library that I had read this book in, and even they couldn't help me. Please please please!!! Someone out there must know something!!!

Jan 24, 2011, 9:48pm Top

could it be the wacky book of witches? I don't remember too much about it

Jan 25, 2011, 12:52am Top

Maybe - What Witches Do, by Shelagh McGee, Prentice-Hall 1980, cover pic here
"Shelagh McGee's collection of poems with illustrations by the author introduce you to witches and wizards and black cats and creatures of the night - and if they and their antics don't make you shiver, they'll certainly make you smile."

Feb 4, 2011, 10:39am Top

Could it be Witches by Colin Hawkins - I used to love it, and it seems to have the same look and feel of the one you're after:


Mar 13, 2011, 4:38pm Top

hello miss, i have a question, where did you purchase the witch's handbook by malcolm bird? my daughter loves it very much and so do i! i'd like to buy it for her but wherever i go i cant find it, or it is almost $300! can you tell me how much you bought it for too?
thank you so much, with best regards,

Mar 30, 2011, 1:32pm Top

bmlg, thanks for the suggestion, but it's definitely not What Witches Do
mccin68, i'm going to look more into Wacky Book of Witches, but I'm not feeling too confident that's it (i'll definitely send you a comment whether it is or not)
same to armaduras, definitely going to look deeper into the colin hawkins book, and i'll let you know if it is the book or not
thanks everyone for the input

May 18, 2011, 1:37am Top

We might be searching for the same book. I recall a witch's guide/handbook, done in the early 1990s, illustrated using only a green, black and white color scheme (I think). Some of the pages had a comic book layout style, and this one had a pull-out "catalog" in the back for witches to order their favorite things. I lost the catalog page and it made me quite sad. Does that sound familiar?

May 30, 2011, 12:54pm Top

Hmm, it's been so long, I honestly don't remember a catalog, but the book you suggest sounds great, if you know the title and author, I'd love to own that book as well :)

Apr 11, 2012, 8:16pm Top


Edited: May 15, 2012, 5:42pm Top

I looked more into Wacky Book of Witches, and that is a pop-up book, and what I'm looking for is not. Thanks so much for your suggestion! One more book crossed off the list.

Oops, got my books mixed up. Colin Hawkins book was pop up, so that is not it. Just got the Wacky Book of Witches book, and that is also not it, but it does have more of the feel, glossy hardcover and glossy pages.

I gotta tell ya, I'm losing all hope, but thank you everyone who has helped and thank you to anyone who comes up with more suggestions. They are all greatly appreciated!!!

Jul 19, 2012, 10:50pm Top

Feathery That description jogs a memory for me- I think what I am thinking of was definitely a children's picture book, if that fits? Unfortunately I don't remember the name of the book. I am thinking Janet and Allen Ahlberg style illustrations, but it doesn't look like one of those. It may have been aimed a bit older anyway. This is going to drive me crazy now!

Sep 7, 2012, 5:09pm Top

I think we are looking for the same book Ma'am! Do you remember anything about a page that had herbs and talked about recipes for spells? I definitely read it between 1990-1992

Sep 11, 2012, 11:30am Top

I am looking for it too! I thought it was called 'How to be a witch' but I can't find anything under that title. Desperately searching!!!!

Oct 4, 2012, 7:40pm Top

On amazon I saw witches handbook by monica carretero aunt Armaga who is a witch writes a letter to her niece and nephew telling them all about what witches are really like

Oct 12, 2012, 8:45pm Top

mccin68, while that sounds like a lovely book, it's not it. there was no letter writing in the book i'm looking for.
katimcbride, it's been a while, but i'm almost positive there is a page about herbs and recipes for spells

to anyone else, please help!!!! I'm so desperate to find this book!!!

Oct 21, 2012, 1:14pm Top


Oct 22, 2012, 6:37pm Top

I am confused. If there are no letters written in the book, how is there a page about herbs and recipes for spells? I really am trying to help locate what book this is!

Oct 22, 2012, 7:17pm Top

I think I remember this one too, have also been desperately trying to find the name.

If I remember correctly it had a picture of a witch with arrows pointing to all the things wrong with her - bandy legs, styes on her face etc. There was another page with a picture of a witch's garden with all the disgusting stuff growing in it. I have a copy of the Witches Handbook too as I also thought it was that one and was disappointed when it wasn't.

It was sort of like the Witches Handbook in that each page/double page dealt with an aspect of the witch's life, but not as heavy on the crafts/recipes etc.

I really hope someone comes along who knows this book

Oct 22, 2012, 8:44pm Top

mitchellmom - letters means mail, not writing

Historywitch - so do I, so do I

Oct 23, 2012, 12:37am Top

Did you say you acually purchased "The Wacky Book of Witches"? I must say i was looking for a book fitting your same description because i remembered checking it out in elementary school, upon acually purchasing the book off amazon (TWBOW) i found the 2 page picture of the fully decorated house, a garden scene of witches buying supplies and a kitchen page where she is cooking her favorite recipe, i found this was exactly the book i was remembering, & so glad i made a purchace on amazon for 30$ it was printed in 1991 & is no longer in print.

Edited: Oct 23, 2012, 3:49pm Top

>28 LeeAnn725: The Colin Hawkins Witches book (http://www.librarything.com/work/807894) isn't a pop-up. I don't think that it can be your book though, because I don't remember anything about favourite weather being rain and gloom, and although it shows a witch's house, it doesn't go into the rooms. But in case it is the book anyone else is looking for (or if it looks familiar, let me know and I can send along some more pictures), I've uploaded the spread on the witch's house here (click through for larger images in my gallery):

And I have also added a page from The Wacky Book of Witches (left) and The Witch's Handbook (right) to help those of you looking for these ones...

(But don't worry LeeAnn725, I am still looking out for your book too, I promise!)

Edited to add extra picture.

Oct 23, 2012, 9:33am Top

Thanks skullduggery! The illustrations of the Witches book doesn't match, but I already own The Wacky Book of Witches so I know that's not it.
I've been trying to remember more about the book, and I'm almost positive the edges of all the pages were black, and I think there was something about liking brambles.

Oct 26, 2012, 4:18am Top

The second picture next to the pic of the wacky book of witches is not from the same book, left pic is from the book , right pic is from something else ... i will post a pic of the house inside the book soon as i do own it and can show examples

Oct 26, 2012, 5:20am Top

>41 shaun562: sorry if it was confusing shaun562, the left page is from The Wacky Book of Witches and the right is from The Witch's Handbook - I just added them both in since it seems that some posters are looking for a variety of different witch books in this thread :)

Nov 14, 2012, 3:15pm Top


Feb 3, 2013, 6:19pm Top


Apr 7, 2013, 12:43pm Top

Have you tried Loganberry Books Stump the Bookseller? They have pretty amazing abilities to find the unfindable. http://www.loganberrybooks.com/stumpthebookseller/?page_id=8

Apr 10, 2013, 11:40pm Top

I've found the book I was thinking of- but it was The Jolly Postman (one of the letters was a witches catalogue). So probably not what you were thinking of, sorry. :(

Apr 11, 2013, 4:05am Top

>46 isigfethera: Ooh I had The Jolly Postman when I was young, it was great! :)

Apr 11, 2013, 3:26pm Top

>sunnybrookgal: I did try loganberry books and no one ever figured out the answer :(

Apr 23, 2013, 6:21pm Top

You could try 'The Little Witch's Cookbook', there are other titles starting with 'The Little Witch's...'
If not, maybe 'Dorrie the Little Witch'?

Apr 23, 2013, 8:22pm Top

>49 mecooper24: I have several of the Dorrie the Little Witch books (the illustrations are just delightful, btw), but although I have no means all of them, I don't think they are the right series - they are more fictional stories, less handbook-for-witches style books.

The Little Witch's Cookbook series looks like a closer match though, hopefully the OP will be able to let us know if it strikes a chord. (There seem to be some interior photos in the amazon listing if that helps.)

Apr 25, 2013, 1:25pm Top

While The Little Witch's Cookbook looks awesome (thanks for the suggestion!) it is definitely not the book I'm looking for. And I'm almost positive the book I'm looking for is not part of a series, but a stand alone book.

Jul 15, 2013, 10:05pm Top

bump, feeling desperate, and a bit of despair

Edited: Jul 29, 2013, 7:08am Top

I believe we are searching for the same book. If I recall correctly, it was very muted colors perhaps a sepia-ish? The part that stuck out to me was the magic wand having a particular number of knots; maybe 3 or 7? I am taking a gamble on The Witches' Lost Spellbook from amazon. there is no cover shot, so I won't be sure until it arrives. Good luck with your search.

Aug 6, 2013, 8:13pm Top

>UncleJessie: I don't remember sepia tones, I remember glossy pages that were black around the edges. I tried looking up The Witches' Lost Spellbook and came up empty. Do you know who the author is? Thanks for posting :)

Edited: Aug 6, 2013, 9:18pm Top

I see The Witches' Lost Spellbook by Joan Cass on Amazon. Here at LT: http://www.librarything.com/work/12850069 The Witches Lost Spell Book

* There's another book by the same author, called The Witches Go on a Package Tour, with an illustrated cover; maybe that could give a clue if it's the same: http://www.amazon.com/The-Witches-Go-Package-Holiday/dp/0340393084

Aug 15, 2013, 1:55pm Top

I don't believe this is the correct book, because all of the information I found on it shows it being a UK only book. All shipping comes from the UK and I highly doubt this book would have been in an American elementary school library. But thank you for the suggestion, I may purchase it through abebooks.com just to have another witch book :)

Aug 24, 2013, 2:40pm Top

Thank you so much Skullduggery! I know this topic's search is for another book but the pictures you posted witch's handbook and the wacky book of witches are the two books I have been trying to find for years! I last saw them around 15 yrs ago and I only remembered the illustrations which makes them pretty hard to find!

Sep 12, 2013, 7:57pm Top

these are long shots
hubble bubble a book of witches and wizards 1990 by John Patience. witches four by marc brown

Sep 12, 2013, 8:50pm Top

Im looking for this book I remember the same things except I don't think it was a handbook I remember it being a little girl snooping.

Sep 16, 2013, 8:11am Top

Well, it was not the Witches' Lost Spellbook.

Oct 1, 2013, 11:50am Top

I know the book you're talking about, I remember witches clothing, spells, friends and other parts. One of my family members still has the copy I will track it down.

Dec 3, 2013, 10:09am Top

I am also looking for this book. The only specific details I remember is a witches portrait gallery (including the name 'Witch Hazel') and Corn on the Cobweb from the witches kitchen. The illustrations were very detailed with lots of annotations that were quite silly or puns.

Feb 24, 2014, 4:07am Top

>mccin68 thank you for the suggestions, unfortunately neither book is correct.
>bchrus did you ever hear back from family about the book?
Fingers crossed I finally find this book!!!!

Mar 23, 2014, 5:09pm Top


Apr 1, 2014, 1:42am Top

it could be Winnie the Witch.

Apr 1, 2014, 6:15am Top

>65 Villy_sp: That was the first suggestion made in the thread...

Apr 1, 2014, 1:42pm Top

oops, you're right I'm sorry!

Apr 2, 2014, 7:50pm Top

>Villy_sp, thanks anyways, I really appreciate the suggestion

Jun 30, 2014, 8:37am Top

Bump. (I have looked at SO many children's books about witches but never found this one.) OP - because the thread is so long, do you think it would be helpful to edit the original post to include a list of all the books you are sure it is not?

Aug 17, 2014, 10:52am Top

LeeAnn725 I am looking for the same book. Please keep me informed and I will do the same. Cheers

Aug 19, 2014, 1:58pm Top

Hi LeeAnn725, do you think this bookshop might be able to help http://www.rippingyarns.co.uk/. If you were to drop them an email with as much info as possible they might be able to help. They might even have the book. I'm looking for several books myself and am pinning my hopes on this one when I visit soon. I really hope you find it ...just spent an hour searching for you myself alas with no luck. You've got me hooked now so I'll keep searching. Best of luck ;)

Oct 17, 2014, 4:58pm Top

>rosieboo, thank you for the suggestion
>skullduggery, I took your advice

I am bumping my topic because it's that time of year ;)

Oct 21, 2014, 7:31am Top

The Internet Archive has indexed a lot of books published in the 60s & 70s & 80s, and I wonder if it would have gotten picked up in that lot. It might be worth trying to figure out their search engine ....

Oct 21, 2014, 10:12am Top

How about A Woggle of Witches by Adrienne Adams published in 1971. Adams also illustrated The Littlest Witch by Jeanne Massey?

Oct 21, 2014, 4:32pm Top

>PaceLuvr, the illustrations definitely don't match, but thank you for the suggestion

Nov 12, 2014, 7:44pm Top


I have also been searching high and low for this book. I remembered it being about a witch, too. But then my genius sister found this book. It's definitely the one I remember and from your description I think it might be what you are looking for too!

Nov 12, 2014, 7:49pm Top

Oops I posted the link but not the title. Little Vampire's Diary by Sonia Holleyman!

Nov 12, 2014, 8:36pm Top

touchstone fairy : Little Vampire's Diary by Sonia Holleyman

Dec 4, 2014, 4:41pm Top

>tyrdunn; thank you for the suggestion, but I am specifically looking for a book about witches, not vampires, and I believe the publication date is a little later than the book I'm looking for

Dec 21, 2014, 9:55pm Top

I have a suggestion. I hope it's not been put out here already, but it's a long thread to read. Get Google Images up on your screen and type in Witch's Handbook or Witches' handbook or Witch's/Witches' Manual or other synonyms/ideas. I think the visual way may be the way to go. I got some very grey/dark imagery, and others very colourful and unlike what you seem to recall.

Something called Garden of the Witch had lots of dark drawings, but you seem strong on "handbook." Perhaps something will grab you ... a witch of the Web!

Dec 26, 2014, 11:09pm Top

I think you're referring to The Wacky Book of Witches, right? I too have been looking for that book, but had forgotten the name. Did Google Search for book covers. THat did the trick!

Feb 15, 12:30pm Top

>Muzzorola, I have tried that many times, still no dice

>AhmedK, thank you for taking the time to post, but it clearly says in my originial post that Wacky Book of Witches is not the correct book

Apr 15, 12:51am Top

bump; I know the the number of entries is daunting, but any help would be greatly appreciated

Edited: Apr 15, 11:54am Top

I highly doubt any of these are the book you are looking for but they haven't been offered up yet
The Witch Family by Eleanor Estes
The Witch's Funny Bone by Ralph Wright
Witch's Brew by Kathie B. Smith (this may or may not be only in board book format but I haven't been able to track down much information on it)
Fly Fly Witchy by Lucy Lawrence (designed for the classroom as a literacy guide)
Witch's Brew by Marcia Leonard (may also just be come as a board book)

I found these using a worldcat search for witch juvenile fiction search for 1991 and weeding out ones that I could find any information on so these are the ones left over that I could find information about the number of pages or publisher but not always cover images and only one I could find a plot for. Not the most helpful I know

Edit to add http://www.goodreads.com/list/show/6949.Witchy_Picture_Books#4390407 most of these books I think you know aren't the one you are looking for but it has a lot of books on it that don't have "witch" in title which we really haven't tried yet

Apr 21, 4:42pm Top

>morwen04, thank you so much for your help
the book I'm looking for doesn't have a story line, so I don't believe any of your suggestions are the book I'm looking for, I know for sure it's not The Witch Family as I've owned and loved that book forever.
The book is not a board book, it is hardback though and fully color illustrated.

Jun 4, 5:52am Top


but in the spirit of making my bump more interesting, I'm including a couple more pictures from books that have been excluded for those that visit this thread in search of them (>57 littlemissres: it was so lovely to read you found some books based on the other pictures!) OP - I still keep looking out for the original book, I promise

Inside a witch's house by Malcolm Bird

Description of a witch - I'm trying to track down which book this one is from, but I think from the style it is from Colin Hawkins's book? (which I do have somewhere, so I will check up on it if anyone's looking for this one in particular)

(click images to embiggen)

Jun 4, 6:18am Top

I don't know the book but just thought I'd suggest two other book search sites in case you haven't met them. Abebooks has a 'booksleuth' forum and 'what was that book' is a LiveJournal forum.

I love witches too - hope you find the book!

Edited: Jun 30, 5:13pm Top

Well, I doubt this is it either, but the blog post is hilarious!

How to Make Magic

Jul 4, 10:47am Top

>88 humouress: oh, that post was great - thanks for sharing!

Edited: Jul 4, 11:32am Top

You're welcome ;0)

Aug 16, 7:51pm Top

That is definitely an amusing blog, but the book is not the right book. *sigh*

Aug 16, 8:23pm Top

I'll venture a guess here. What about Nattie Witch by Ruth Rosner? The description from School Library Journal says:
A lighthearted, imaginative look at the daily routine of a witch child. Nattie's day isn't too different from that of any youngster--except her breakfast is Newt Loops, she rides to school on her father's broom, her lessons include spell casting, and she plays baseball with a live bat.

Sep 12, 10:25pm Top

Okay, I picked up a book at the free book shed today : Best Witches by Robert Heitman. "Best Witches: A Cartoon Report on the World of Witches."

It's not exactly a kid book, but it has various humorous asides, cartoon-style, about the new witch.

Sep 15, 2:46pm Top

>indybr12; I've looked at Nattie Witch and it's not the correct book

>lquilter; I'll definitely look into the suggestion, thanks ;)

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