307F: Half-Dragon General

In the 80’s (at around 10-13yrs old) I read a YA fantasy trilogy about a warring general who was half human half (lizard/reptile/dragon?) who’s skin is covered in (tiny blue) scales. He was looked down on for this deformity but his difference was part of his driving force. The trilogy follows a young girl who was captured or sold into the war party/entourage and follows her journey as the general conquers lands etc. I can’t remember much more but she eventually becomes his mistress or concubine type of slave maybe?

Paperback trilogy, Young adult section, fantasy fiction. It seemed new at the time but it could have been written in the mid to late seventies or early eighties? It seemed to be set in a slightly game of thrones non-era era? All three books were of average novel length. I partially remember the covers being full colour, maybe a central picture in a darker arched border?

306P: Above a converted red barn

I’m trying to locate the title and copy of a book from my childhood. I purchased it at a book fair at my elementary school in Chicago when I was between the ages of 8-10. 1988-1990. Maybe a scholastic title since they sponsored our books fairs and sales?

The book was about a family that lived above a converted red barn, kept livestock and were apple/orchard farmers (not the red barn book)! Beautiful pictures, almost like watercolors, that depicted the family in winter/ maybe fall. Father mother daughter, maybe more kids, based in New England or upper Midwest area. I’ve been searching for several years.

Thanks for your time

306E: The rabbit that gave all of their clothes away in the cold

My children want to find this book that I read to them. The cover was deep blue with the rabbit on the cover, in a snowy nighttime setting. Over the course of the book, the rabbit (as I recall, you are never sure if it’s a he or she) gives away maybe food, definitely shoes, coat, scarf, etc to others in need. Sadly the rabbit freezes to death, but then maybe you see the rabbit in the starry sky? Not an old book, probably written in 80s or 90s. Very simple drawings, cartoon like, not realistic. Anyone remember?  Title might have indicated it was a book about giving. Thanks

305I: Using your imagination

I am hopeful you can help me in my search for a book I had as a child.

Unfortunately I do not remember the title.

I believe it was about using your imagination and starred two children (boy and girl) and possibly their family.

The entire book had simplistic pen and ink illustrations in black and white with washes of pink and blue ink as the only colors in the book.

One of the main illustrations I remember was of the children eating clouds, they had plates of clouds and were eating them like spaghetti, wrapping them around forks and having a grand feast.

Date range: I had this book as a child between 1975-80, but the book could easily be from the 60’s-70’s.

If I remember correctly, the book was a paperback in horizontal format, approx 9 or 10” wide by 5 or 6” tall.

304Q: Rainbows and Dinosaurs

The book was a children’s book from the 1980’s that had something to do with rainbows and dinosaurs. Each page had a different dinosaur of a different color. The text would be something like the “the green dinosaur play in the grass”. I’m not sure if that is an actual quote from the book but it gives an example. The only sentence I do remember is “the black dinosaur waits for the dawn.” I learned to read by memorizing this book and then later recognizing the words and letters. I would like to find this book for my toddler son. Please let me know if you can help.

304M: British gang of dogs vs. rival cats

I am trying to find a book or possibly a series that I read as a child in the mid 80’s. Must have been published 70’s or 80’s.  Definitely a British book, and very detailed illustrations. It’s about a group of dogs that go around a seaside town. The walk upright, wear clothes and talk (possibly some of them even smoke cigarettes?) There are different breeds and I think the leader is a black and white dog. At some point there is an altercation with a rival cat gang.  I can’t remember title or author.

303G: 80s Children’s Chapter Story Anthology Big Book (Solved)

I think from the 80s, it was an anthology with chapters of different kids stories in it. I think there was a Judy Blume chapter (Fudge), a story about a boy picking between a blue or red toothbrush, a story about a kid not wanting to touch the gunk in the bottom of the sink that is left after the dishes, maybe the Mrs. Piggle Wiggle story about the kids not hearing their parents so they put powder in their ears, maybe a Wayside story chapter. I think it was a big white book (hardcover with a white jacket).

303C: Beauty and the Beast fiction anthology

I’m hunting down a fiction anthology that involved “Beauty and the Beast” riffs. One of the riffs involved a perfect couple (I think New Yorkers) with a perfect life–and the wife was slowly beginning to think that her beautiful, flawless, successful, doting husband had a terrible double life as a beast in a city reeling from a series of bloody, violent attacks. I’m fairly sure it was published in softcover in the late 1980s to mid 1990s. One detail that really stands out to me is that when the husband came home late one night, the wife noticed a drop of blood on his cheek and realized that he was the beast–which left her in a whole bunch of serious dilemmas, most of which were left as cliffhangers. This was only one of many stories in the book, but it really left an impression. If I recall correctly, most of the writers in the anthology were women. I was way into Sheri S. Tepper and other female authors at the time, if that helps, but I don’t think it was her story collection “Beauty.” I hope you can find it! Thanks 🙂

302Y: Strange “activity” book

I’ve posted about this elsewhere, but there’s a strange book from my childhood that both my sister and I remember.  I say activity book, but it wasn’t really an activity book. There was no place to draw or anything in the book. Here are some details:

*It was probably published around 1980-1985, I would have read it from 1987-1991, and I believe it was my sister’s before I got it. It was about a 2nd to 5th grade reading level. Some pics, some text.

*The cover was a dark blue/teal, the title was a garish reddish color, and there was a knight on it

*I remember the title being kind of long, and ending with the words “…for kids!”

*The book was really non-sequitur, and went all over the place. One page might be a math puzzle, the next might be a story about baseball.

*There was a recurring theme of a medieval knight throughout the whole thing, and he would just pop up randomly to comment on stuff

*There were a lot of jokes about “the author/publisher of this book blah blah blah” and “the editors of this book blah blah blah.” Probably way over my head at the time.

*The last page was a memorization game

*I believe there was one page with a large blue square on it, and a paragraph talking about the significance of that square.

*There was at least one math word problem, and I believe it involved crickets or grasshoppers

*There was a story about baseball, maybe about the history of baseball?

*There was a brief page about lead in pencils, and how it’s called lead, but it’s really graphite


As for the style of the book, it’s almost as if a bunch of people with a similar sense of humor got together and decided to make a kids book, but not talk to each other about it. It was that bizarre. Almost every page was a different subject, and the only recurring motif at all was the random knight. The book constantly broke the fourth wall, and the writer(s) would make fun of the characters on that page, or the random knight would make fun of the author(s). Someone stated that it sounds like Monty Python, and it was a lot in that same vein of humor. If Monty Python made a kids book, it would be very similar to the one I’m looking for.

It’s entirely possible that it was written by a group of people, and possibly as a joke.

For what it’s worth, my grandmother lived in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area of North Carolina during my youth (the 1980’s). She had moved there from northern New Jersey in the late 1970s. She was a kindergarten teacher for most of her life.  Furthermore, her sister (my great-aunt) had actually published a few books (one of them a children’s book) during the 1960s, and lived in Washington DC until the mid 1980s. So there were strong ties in those places. The book could have been published by a small publisher in any of those places, and somehow made it’s way to my grandmother.

Again, thanks for your help!

302R: Monsters in Rain (Solved)

This children’s storybook is no later than late 70’s or early to mid 80’s, it had pictures. There were some evil monsters or something that hated rain and were vulnerable to water, so some people went out to confront them during a rainstorm by putting their coats in jars to keep them dry. The people then put on their dry coats when they approached the monsters, and when the monsters asked why the people weren’t wet, the people said they were able to move between the raindrops without getting wet. The people told the the monsters how they could do the same, but when the monsters tried it the water got them.