310F: The Rolling Wheels (Solved)

It’s the story of a family who joins a wagon train to travel to California.  In one of the episodes, they meet up with another wagon train before they cross the Sierra Mountains and it turns out that other group was the Donner Party.  They went their separate ways.  (It didn’t mention what happened to the Donners.)  Another vivid part of the book had them crossing the desert, they’re almost collapsing from thirst and tormenting mirages of water appear on the horizon.  Also, I seem to remember them carving on rocks, joining the marks of others who had traveled that way.



309Z: A priest and a prostitute (Solved)

This book is from the 1970's I believe. A priest lets an ill prostitute move in with him so he can care for her. Her name is Ursula Vaclav. One day the priest returns home soaking wet during a thunderstorm, and the prostitute runs and clings to him because she is terrified of thunderstorms. She then goes about making dinner while he goes to change into dry clothes, selecting a work shirt and pants rather than his priest outfit. He can't stop thinking about her as they drink wine with dinner, and he helps her with washing the dishes. As she puts the last dish away in the cupboard she turns toward him and he takes her in his arms and kisses her. He had never kissed a woman before, and then carries her up the stairs for more. I recall the title of the book as something like "the time and the hour", and I think the author was a man.

309J: A picture of mother (Solved)

There is a book from my childhood that I think about often. I would be forever grateful if you could help unite me with it. I don’t have a title for you, but here is what I know:
1) It is a picture book for children.
2) I read the book as a child in the early 80s.
3) Plot: It is a book about a child (might be an animal child, not sure) that wants to make a picture of his mother. He starts out making the picture on his own and feels he needs advice, so he  takes it to different animal characters to see what they think. Each animal looks at the picture and makes a suggestion to change it somehow to reflect a feature of that animal (for example: the elephant suggests that the nose be lengthened). By the end of the book the picture has a variety of different features that look nothing like the mom.
Sadly, I cannot remember much else. I have tried to imagine the title and the best I could guess at is “A Picture of Mother” or something of the sort. But I could be way off.
This books stands out to me now as a message about trusting your own judgement in creating art (or writing) and not allowing yourself to be so easily influenced by the opinions of others. Let your work be your own. I’m not sure if that was the message it had intended to give, but it comes to mind now as I pursue my own writing career. I’d love to have this message bearer as a tangible reminder of this lesson.
Please help me, for you may be my only hope. Thank you for your time and effort.

308X: A blue lion in the tree (Solved)

I’m trying to find a book from my childhood (1980s). It is basically a picture book about a kid in bed looking out a window and seeing different animals in a tree. I remember a snake and white owl on two of the pages. I don’t remember the rest, maybe a bear and a lion. Some of them were different colors too like blue. I believe it went something like “I look out the window to see a blue lion in the tree”.

Thank you for your help.

308L: Mole in the hole (Solved)

A mole is asleep in a hole but a bear (I think) thinks that he fell in and is hurt. He tries to get help but has to bargain with other animals e.g. horse has a rope but he wants a brush to swap, so bear goes to squirrel to get a brush but he wants nuts (I think) … eventually bear gets back to mole to find out he was only asleep

307I: Boy and Agoraphobic Sister Orphaned in NYC (Solved)

I am looking for a fiction book I read as a child, probably in the 1970s, about a brother and sister living in New York City (possibly Soho?).  They are left alone and their parents do not come home, so the brother learns to scrounge food on the streets.  His sister is afraid to go outside.  The boy meets a children’s book illustrator in another building, who begins using him in her drawings.  She takes him to the beach (the Rockaways?) in her convertible, and I believe she eventually adopts the boy and girl.

307H: Children’s book with moveable character on a string (Solved)

Last summer, I bought my son a new children’s book which contained several characters which dangled from the book on strings – the concept was that you could move the characters in between pages so they could give “hugs” to the other characters. I bought it because it reminded me so much of a book I loved as a child. When I brought the new book home, my sister had the same reaction: “this is making me think of a book from when we were growing up!”
The best clues I can come up with:
– I was born in 1984 and my sister in 1980 (we also have a younger brother born in 1987).
– Our grandma loved to give us vintage books, so it may have been even older, though I suspect it was from the 1980s.
– There was one character on a string, sturdier than a single sheet of paper but not as thick as a board book. The string–about 6 inches long–was glued into the binding of the book. The concept was to move the character from page to page and bring him throughout the story of the book. He was probably about 2 or 3 inches tall.
– The book had interactive elements – for example, I remember vividly that you could somehow insert him on a slide, and he could “ride” down the slide as you pushed the little character along the page.
– I think the character was an animal (a bear? A weasel? Something brown?) but my memory is so faint on this that it may very well have been a human.