339O: Children’s Book of Short Stories Published in the 1960s or early 1970s

Hello. When I was around 5 or 6 years old (1972 to 1973) I loved a book of short stories. I think it contained around a dozen or so stories.

One of the stories was about a lost cat (or kitten). The cat is lonely, cold, and hungry. The cat wandered around and found a pond with a fish in it. The cat tries to grab the fish, but is pulled into the water. (I think there may have been a fishing pole, and the cat got tangled in it.) When the owner of the house heard the ruckus outside, he went out to retrieve the fish and cat. The cat then lives happily thereafter with the owner, and the owner cooks the fish for the cat.

Another story was about some people who went for a short boat ride on a lake in a rowboat. To make sure everyone person was accounted for, the organizer of the voyage had everyone wear a similar hat. Her plan was to count the number of hats before the journey, and then afterwards. If the number matched, then everyone was accounted for. I recall the voyage had some problems. I think the boat started to sink because someone forgot to install the drain plug. But it wasn’t dangerous because the lake was very shallow. At any rate, at the end of the voyage the organizer was worried & upset because the number of hats she counted afterwards was one less than the onset of the voyage. But someone pointed out that she forgot to count the hat on her head, and everyone laughed.

Thank you

339N: Who is the author? Begins with Stephen…not King or Crane (Solved!)

I am recalling an early short story writer, from the 1930s and 1940s, he wasn’t known as a science fiction author but wrote a piece of science fiction about a take over of the world by machines. They weren’t AI or anything that sophisticated. No microprocessors. The takeover included automobiles and even irons and vacuum cleaners. The machines just revolted. I think that the story was told by a person in an enclosed room waiting to die, telling his tale. The writer’s first name was Stephen. My parents had a copy of “The Complete Works of Stephen….” or “The Collected Works of Stephen….” but I can’t remember his last name. Does anyone who it might be? I believe he also wrote some poetry included in the set.  I think there were two volumes.

339M: OLD book with uncolored illustrations where a girl saves 3 other girls from a dragons belly

I’m guessing it was from the 70s or 80s, maybe earlier. softcover, fairly thin, and beautiful uncolored illustrations inside. From memory, it was about a girl who lived out of an old single carriage (starts with an illustration of her standing next to it) and traveled, with short stories of her adventures.

The one I remember best is her going to three towns, singing in one and being told singing is banned because a dragon took the towns best singer, dancing in another town and being told the same, and (I believe) telling a story in the third town? Later on, she finds the dragons cave where he has the three stolen girls in his stomach, and from the best of my memory, the three girls in his stomach tell him a story and sing him to sleep, then dance in his stomach until they’re spit up, and the main character saves them? I perfectly remember there’s an illustration at this part with all 4 girls escaping on a horse together, and I used to stare at that page for so long.

Later on in the book, all I can seem to remember is another point where she’s in a forest and meets some kind of shapeshifter / kelpie or similar creature… but that’s all I’ve got. I believe the girl is on the cover, and I seem to remember the cover art being very neutral/earth toned. I re-found this book on amazon years ago, but now I can’t find it again and cannot for the life of me remember the title or author. It was my absolute favorite book and i’d love to be able to find it again.


339L: Three Days Turns Into 30 Years

I’m having trouble locating a children’s book. Here’s everything I remember:
Picture Book
I first read it in the late 90s so definitely published before 2000
A girl ends up in heaven/utopia for 3 days and when she returns to her mom 30 years have actually passed. Her mom has aged significantly.
She might have been fleeing from a war.
That is all I remember and I am completely stumped. Hoping you can help since google was unable to.

339K: Mr. Tell-Us-A-Story-Man

There was a play–I suppose it was a children’s play and I don’t remember the name of it or the author–but the central character was named Mr. Tell-Us-A-Story-Man. I played that character in at least two different productions of the play–at school and at Sunday School when I was in the 3rd and 4th grades–so when I was 9 and 10 years old. I wish I could find that play–google-searching has been no help. I can see the text of the play in its published form, printed on cheap already yellowing paper.

339J: Children’s fantasy from 60s/70s with invisible magician/wizard/enchanter (Solved!)

I borrowed this book from the library, probably during the 1970s, but it may have been published earlier. My vague memories include: two children, probably a boy and a girl, had magical adventures. There was a friendly witch or female magician and a good but scary male magician who was always invisible. This may have been by choice, and there was a backstory of a romantic relationship with the witch. One of the children was transported by the invisible magician and found it rather frightening but eventually trusted the magician. This was not the main plot!

The book was almost certainly British and would have been a chapter book (not a term used at that time).

Thank you!

339I: Children’s book about a Southern girl who wants to be a doctor

I was eight or nine, and this was in the early 1960s. The book opens with a wedding; the girls’ sister is marrying a Mr. Quackenbush. It’s a big Scottish American family in the South. Later her brother is bitten by a copperhead snake, and the servants’ children—I am ashamed to say they called them pickanninies-and one goes blind. It’s the first time I read the verse “Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil.”


339H: Measles and a Nurse

I’m looking for a book that is about a nurse caring for a young man (he might have been a doctor) who is dying of complications from measles.  He is in a coma. I think it takes place in Ireland.  The nurse has substance abuse issues, works mostly at night.  He is in love with her and makes up stories and conversations in his head.


339F: Baby Girl Cries Out For Her Big Old Cat

The book I am looking for is a children’s book that I had when I was about 5 or so and I am now 40.
The book is about an old big cat that would sit with its owners baby girl and push her in a swing daily and the baby loved it.  Then one day the baby girl’s mom sent the cat to go live somewhere else (I think that the cat went to a farm, it was not a huge part of the story at all, so I am saying a farm, it could have been somewhere else, the cat was definitely sent somewhere)  The baby would not stop crying for the old big cat.  Nothing calmed the little baby girl down.  So the mom got the cat back.  And the baby was happy again.
The front cover of the book is a cat pushing a baby in a swing.
It is a hard cover book.
I think the title may have been the cats name or the name the baby girl called the cat
I appreciate your help with this, I have been trying to remember the name of this book for a long time so figured I would try this way out.

339E: Hordes of Trolls during the End Times

I read this book in the 90s at the latest so it’s not new. It was an end of time book, at least YA if not adult. Several things happened in the first chapter but I remember it saying a woman was putting laundry on a line outside and gnomes or trolls came running down the mountain in hordes. They were described as being in a color she had never seen before but could only be described as fear? I’m not sure the wording but something to that point.

Sorry that’s all I remember. It drives me insane looking for it. Hope you can help!