Children's literature

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Children's literature

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Dec 12, 2010, 3:44pm

Even though I have no children or grandchildren, I love to browse the children's section of the library. A recent favourite find is The Widow and the Parrot by Virginia Woolf. She wrote it for her young nephews, Quentin and Julian Bell, who produced a daily family newspaper - and who incidentally were not impressed and rejected the submission. The story was discovered 60 years later and published with an afterword by nephew Quentin, and beautifully illustrated by grand-nephew Julian Bell.

Dec 12, 2010, 5:00pm

Oh, that sounds lovely! I'll have to look for that one. I read a lot of children's lit, because I'm building up my two-year-old's library. I'm reading through a handful of children's lit award lists, adding the ones I thank are really good to Charlie's bookshelves (I think he's probably got more books already than most toddlers - lol!).

Dec 12, 2010, 5:26pm

Vivienne, that does sound like a wonderful book.

When I was small my mother bought a large set of Johnny Gruelle's Raggedy Ann and Andy books for me. I enjoyed them a lot and still have most of them, as my mother refused to get rid of them. I recently reread Raggedy Ann and the Wonderful Witch, an incredibly cute story about a witch who tries to be wicked and finally, having failed miserably over and over again, gives up!

Dec 12, 2010, 5:51pm

mlnelson01: I loved the Raggedy Ann & Andy books when I was little. My mom even made me life-sized dolls of them (which I still have, of course!).

Right now I'm reading The Jungle Book for the first time and really enjoying it so far.

Dec 12, 2010, 5:56pm

scaifea, I have dolls too! My mom made mine too! I've nver met anyone else who had the books and genuine, handmade, stuffed- with-cotton dolls. I think we need to post pictures.

Dec 12, 2010, 6:00pm

LOL! Yes, let's post pictures, although I'll have to wait until we visit my parents' for Christmas to take mine, since my dolls are still there (I've been meaning to bring them back home for me, but I've been waiting until Charlie is out of the toddler-destroy-everything mode first).

Dec 12, 2010, 6:53pm

I am currently reading The Snow Queen, beautifully illustrated by PJ Lynch. Just the right book to get ready for Christmas with, and as an adult I am seeing it in a different light. It is an amazing story.

Recently I realised that I have a problem with children's books. When I was around 15 I began collecting together all the books myself and my siblings had as children thinking that they could be passed on down the generations. Now we have a new generation and I don't part with these books! So I am doubling up all the time.

Dec 12, 2010, 7:25pm

One of my favorite books as a child was called Free to be You and Me. My sister and I borrowed this from the library every chance we could, run home and take turns reading the script. I don't know if I ever had more fun than that.

My nephews always had me read The Monster at the End of This Book to them.

Dec 12, 2010, 8:29pm

>7 Quembel: My family has that problem too. My mom wouldn't give me the Raggedy Ann books (not all of them anyway) even though they were MINE. At Thanksgiving she said to me "I guess you can take those now. All the grandchildren have outgrown them."

> My daughter loved Free to be You and Me, especially the dialogue between the girl baby and the boy baby. Her father used to read it to her in baby voices. What a hoot!

Dec 12, 2010, 9:07pm

thebeadden & mlnelson: I had Free to Be You and Me on a record as a kid - loved it.

the beadden: The Monster and the End of This Book was won of my absolute favorites when I was little, and now it's one of Charlie's - I love reading it with him. "Don't turn the page!!!"

Dec 12, 2010, 9:22pm

I am laughing right now. This brought back so many wonderful memories.

>9 mlnelson01: The dialogue between the babies was our favorite too. I'd love to buy one for my sister just to see her face.

>10 scaifea: Don't turn the page! Ha!

>3 mlnelson01:, 4, 5 I had the Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls but I don't think I knew there were books when I was a child. I would have loved to read them then. I think I remember the dolls having a heart on them.

Dec 13, 2010, 8:26pm

>7 Quembel: I know what you mean about the doubling up, not really being willing to give up those old books. I just mooched The Diggingest Dog on Bookmooch from an LT member here and I am so excited! It was one of my absolute FAVORITES growing up and I can't wait to have it again.

As far as I'm concerned, if the book brings joy, it doesn't matter if it's like, 12 pages long and every other sentence is "But Not The Hippopotamus;" it deserves a place of honor on the Bookshelf. :)

(All of Sandra Boynton's books are great and I don't care if they are board books, I want them. I want them ALL!)

Dec 19, 2010, 2:43pm

Two of the best children's books I've read lately (thanks to 5 grandchildren) is "Diary of a Fly" and "Diary of a Spider" These are funny and the art work is superior. Sometimes the humor is above the 4-5 year olds but even if they miss the higher level, they do understand it on the literal level. The author of both is Doreen Cronin.

Dec 19, 2010, 2:55pm

I've found that Cronin's books are great to read to 6 to 8 year-olds. They then take them and try to read the books on their own. Besides, I like them myself.

Edited: Dec 20, 2010, 1:26pm

I have just bought all of the Hairy Macleary from Donovan's Dairy books for my granddaughter because I used to love them! She will also get The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Owl babies Guess how much I love you and many more. She is only 7 months so am hoarding them up at the moment!

Dec 28, 2010, 7:16am

>15 carolineroche: Oh you've named some of my very favorites right there!

One book I haven't heard mentioned here but it is wonderful is Love you forever. Don't be put off by the cover - it has nothing to do with potty training! And if you are a sandwich-generation parent like me (one who started late, so had young children and aging parents to care for at the very same time) it will be especially meaningful.

Dec 31, 2010, 5:04pm

#13 and 14
The grandchildren loved the Doreen Cronin books - my favorite was Click, clack, moo. They thought Duck was great.

I cry every time I read Love you forever. It's such a beautiful story.

Dec 31, 2010, 11:32pm

>17 fdholt: -
I cry every time...
Mm Hmmm. Me too. Can't get through it without bawling. And I'm not the crying type!

Jan 3, 2011, 11:50am

I too have no children or grandchildren and must say that I am a closet collector of children's books. I seldom tell anyone because they tend to think I'm a little "cracked" for doing this, but I just simply love having them. I started collecting because I wanted to find the book of children's stories that my own mother had read to me as a child. And after finding that book, I began finding other story collections that drew me in and begged me to buy them. Now it's official, I'm completely addicted. :)

Jan 3, 2011, 4:29pm


I am slowly adding all books now packed in boxes that I am keeping and there are lots of children's books: mine, my brother's and ones I've bought for grandchildren that stay here. I enjoy reading them also.

Jan 3, 2011, 4:40pm

I've just started Carry On. Mr. Bowditch as part of my effort to read all of the Newbery winners.

Jan 3, 2011, 4:47pm

I _love_ that book. Read it for maybe 4th grade? 5th?, then lost it, then found it again. It's a great story, but the neatest part is that it's true...maybe not in detail, but Nathaniel Bowditch was a real person who really did (re)write that book and test it as Carry On, Mr. Bowditch tells. Fascinating.

Edited: Jan 3, 2011, 4:48pm


My favorite book as a child. I'd read it about 25 times by the time I was in first grade and still reread it once a year, at least.

Jan 3, 2011, 4:48pm

#22 & 23: Neat! That makes me look forward to it all the more.

Jan 3, 2011, 5:07pm

>19 lsknightsr1: I've gone to great lengths to reproduce and/or preserve my favorite books from childhood. Somehow--I'm not quite sure exactly how, but still-- Keo the Otter, Miss Hickory and Moominsummer Madness are the reason I'm the kind of reader I am today.

Jan 29, 2011, 8:01pm

I'm another closet children's book collector, with no children of my own (yet?).
I was recently reading Winnie the pooh over lunch at work, and one of my coworkers laughed at me when he saw. But what's not to love about it? some books from childhood only get better as you get older, and pooh is one of them :)

I also gave my boyfriend a copy of Mr. Popper's Penguins for Christmas this year :) now there's a great book :)

Jan 29, 2011, 10:42pm

>26 LipstickAndAviators:

I think I appreciate Winnie the Pooh more as an adult even more than I did as a child, and I have ALWAYS loved Winnie the Pooh :)

Jan 31, 2011, 11:49am

#26: I just read Mr. Popper's Penguins for the first time not too long ago and loved it! Also didn't read the Pooh books until a couple of years ago and agree the one doesn't need to be a kid to enjoy them.

Feb 12, 2011, 3:27am

#26, 28,

My 3rd grade grandson just read Mr. Popper's Penguins as a class read. I found it in his bookbag and sat down and read the entire book before he went home. Great book!

I love children's books, can't help it as I had 2 sons and now 5 grandsons.

Feb 16, 2011, 2:32pm

I am entering my children's books on LT now - amazing how the types of books have changed in these many years. My favorites as a child were Stories of Annabelle and Puppy play house along with Walt Disney's Cinderella puppet show by Retta Worcester. My son loved Richard Scarry's Best word book ever, Christopher for president and Are you my mother? while the grandchildren read Click clack moo over and over again. I introduced them to some of my favorites but they didn't seem to think Hoppie the hopper or Up in the attic was exceptionally good reading.

Edited: Feb 27, 2011, 5:58am

Oh my--I just read a child's book that brought tears to my eyes.....Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters by Barack Obama. I don't like the man or his politics, so I picked up the book full well intending to hate it and it's beautiful. I bought it and paid full price for it too! It's the dream that we all have for our children. Very nicely done and illustrated.

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