298U: Look at me, Mama!

The book I am looking for was published in the early 1970s or possibly late 60s. It was a large format children’s book (probably around 15″ tall by 10-12″ wide). If I remember right, it had a black and white checked border on the cover, similar to The Real Mother Goose. It was an anthology of children’s stories. There was a story about a little girl who picks her neighbors flowers, and her mother explains to her that she shouldn’t do that and they plant a garden for the little girl so she has her own flowers. There is another story about a little boy picking huckleberries and pretending to be a bear or maybe running into a bear in the woods. There is another one about a little girl who reads The Little Red Hen and then she pretends to be the red hen. There is also a poem called “Look at Me, Mama” wherein a bunch of different bugs do things and tell their mothers to look at them – there is a line that goes something like “And when a little water bug sticks his face – his WHOLE FACE – into the water and says ‘look at me, mama!’, she does!”

The graphics in the book are all very much straight out of 1968 – 1975.

For the life of me, I cannot remember what this book was called and I’ve not seen a copy of it for years. I’ve been googling everything I can think to google. It was one of my favorite books when I was a kid and I want to share it with my son, who is now about the age I was when my mom used to read it to me.

I hope you can find it – thank you!

298T: Family takes a trip in a loaded up station wagon

I’ve been looking for a picture book about a family that goes on a road trip (I think).  I remember the pictures being detailed, I think the family had a loaded up station wagon with many things tied to the roof.  They go to the beach, I think,  among other places.  I was born in 1974, , so it might be late 70’s, early 80’s?  The illustrations almost had a Where’s Waldo look to them, though NOT a find and search book.  I think there was a baby in the family, maybe three kids.  I remember winding roads and color illustrations.

298R: Late 1970/ early 1980s fairy tale book with 12 Dancing Princesses

I checked in the fairy tales page but didn’t find my book amongst the ones listed. I am looking for a child’s fairy tale book that was probably published in the late 1970s or early 80s and possibly in Canada as my parents lived in the Niagara Falls area and it may have been purchased in Niagara-on-the-Lake. The book was oversized and probably around 100 pages with a pale bluish cover and contained many tales including The Nightingale and I think the very last story was the 12 Dancing Princesses. It was heavily illustrated with beautiful colour illustrations that had a very “silky” look to clothing and hair of the characters. I’m pretty sure it was a generic title such as Fairy Tales or maybe World’s Best Fairy Tales  and it is NOT the Reader’s Digest book from that era. I think there may have been a prince and princess on the front cover and there was a round vignette illustration on the back of scenery I believe.  Any help would be appreciated!

298E: An Easy Reader

I am hoping to find more information about an Easy Reader type book my teacher used when I was in the first grade, circa 1990.

The book was a series of red books, and the words were phonetic. I believe each book had multiple short stories. I remember one was about an African American boy who finds a Genie. The book definitely had a black boy and a genie, I may be conflating the two.

This cover looked familiar to me. The reader I am thinking of, may or may not be this one or have an image on the cover. I distinctly remember it was red.

I also remember the clothing of the illustrations within the book looked dated to me as a child, which I think means the book may have been published in the 70s or 80s originally.

 

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297S: Star-Shaped Key (Solved)

I am looking for a book targeted at, I think, 10-to-12-year-olds, which I suspect was published between 1965 and 1980.  I think the protagonists were a brother and sister who for some reason were spending some months (summer vacation?) in a remote location, which I believe was mountainous.  The permanent inhabitants were faced with a problem that I do not remember but which I believe involved water.  A recurring plot point was that the young boy was taught to play draughts and was challenged to improve–this name for the game may mean that, though I read the book in a U.S. library, it was a British book.  The problem was solved through the use of a key with a star-shaped end which was inserted into a rock face and turned.

As a final detail, I believe the cover of the book was mostly a picture, drawn in blue and white.

297R: Big book of stories, almost like a telephone book

I am looking for a big book of stories I enjoyed as a child in the early to mid 1980s. It’s possible the book was published in either the 70s or 80s. It is NOT the typical hardcover collection of stories but rather a paperback, rather oversized book – almost like a telephone book with same type of “newspaper like” pages and black and white print. A distinctive feature is that it had pastel multicolored sections of pages inside. Each color represented a specific type of story like yellow for fairy tales, pink for animal stories, blue for classics adapted for kids, etc. The most specific story I remember is the 12 Dancing Princess who wore out their shoes. It had beautiful illustrations with ladies sporting the French pompadour style with ringlets hairdos and full ballroom dresses. I also have a vague memory of a cute little story featuring a ladybug and other various insects conversing with each other. We also had a similar type big book of jokes (featuring different types of jokes including Tom Swifties!) that I seem to remember having a mostly white cover; I always thought they were part of a series of big books but I could be wrong.

Thanks for any help.

297L: Cuttyhunk Island

The book that I am trying to find was purchased via scholastic books (or similar) in the 1978-1979

school year. Probably Spring ’79.  It was young adult fiction and either the back cover or the description said “Rites of Passage” (then something about learning to drive,graduating,etc.)

The book began with the heroine and her family cleaning out a beloved family cabin or cottage. Her grandmother had just died and she was having trouble dealing with it. A female cousin shows up and they don’t really like each other. Later in the book they become close.The cousin has become cool by sewing shift dresses for classmates. The dresses are unique because she added a pop art twist to

each dress. The cousin would appliqué a hamburger up by a shoulder or a little snake at the waist.

The heroine is dating / deciding between two boys. One is a freshman at MIT / ridiculously smart. One of them gives her a rock from Cuttyhunk Island. I had never heard of this Island and was taken with the idea that it could produce perfectly round rocks because of tides and gravity,etc. For a work of fiction,it explained it pretty well.

The heroine keeps the rock as a talisman ( learned that word from the book ) and at the end of the book throws it into the sea because she doesn’t need it any longer.

That is all that I remember. Thank you for your help.

297J: A boy in a fully automated house (Solved)

Hello! I have been trying to find a children’s picture book from probably the 1970s or possibly 1960s. It was about a boy who lived in a house that was fully automated. (No parents are in the story, I don’t think. ) A machine would wake him up in the morning, put him in the shower, dry him off, put his clothes on, make him breakfast, sit him down to eat, and send him off to school. It was not a robot, more like he was moved through a conveyor belt of morning routine activities. They boy seemed to sleep through everything. One night, the machine goes on the fritz, and he is sent through the morning activities in the wrong order. The machine is all messed up – he gets his hair washed with breakfast, clothes put on upside-down, etc. Hope you can help!

296W: Sci-Fi Retelling of Homer’s The Odyssey

I read this in the late 1970s. A 12ish year old boy living in a rural area of the US notices small lakes are disappearing in his area. He deduces that aliens are stealing the water to use for fuel and starts watching for their ship, which he boards when he sees it. The ship takes off while he is aboard and the rest of the book is his adventures in trying to return home. There are other abductees from other planets already on board who become his crew. It is a loose re-telling of Homer’s The Odyssey in that the boy travels from planet to planet aboard the ship and encounters people who are recognizably the Lotus-Eaters, the Cyclops, Circe, etc. Because it’s a children’s book, many of the details are toned down. For example, the Cyclops had poor vision and thus needed to wear a thick lens to see, which the adventurers broke to “blind” him. I remember very well there was a full-page painting of the boy in the Cyclops cave, which might have been the cover of the book.

 

296U: Teenage model (Solved)

I read this book, from my high school library, around 1972. It was contemporary at that time. The main character was a pretty, poised girl who gets a job as a fashion model. This scene might have occurred during the hiring process, which took place at a restaurant. She gets the impression that one of the men is flirting with her, so she asks if he has children. When he says yes, she asks to see pictures of them, which distracts him from the flirting so she feels as though she has rejected him without offending him. The girl has a nerdy younger brother and this scene only stays in my mind because a friend who also read it asked me “what are the runs” when she gets to this part. The main character stays home with her younger brother when he has the runs. Although they typically quarrel like siblings do, she feels bad for him this day and is kind.