347Y: Galoshes Raincoat Boy

A picture of my grandson reminded both me and my son of a book (two books at least in the series) by an English author that centered on a young boy who lived in the city with his mother. We both have vivid memories of him in his raincoat and putting on his galoshes. Everything about the book was quintessentially English – sort of Paddington mood. The boy lived in an urban setting, maybe working to middle class (not as posh as Paddington’s digs). The stories were about routine things – doing errands, the mail, etc. It’s driving us both crazy!

347V: Shape Shifting Amnesiac Becomes The Thunderbird

I read this book in the 1970s or early 1980s. It is fiction/fantasy about a man with amnesia (modern times of the 1970s or 80s) who through adventures eventually discovers that he is a shape shifter who morphs into the SW Native (Indian) god/entity the Thunderbird. I think there are two books in the series and I seem to recall a female protagonist who also turns into a Thunderbird and the two characters go off into the sunrise together, but don’t quote me on that! The cover art was intriguing. And the end was sad because to become Himself as the Thunderbird the guy with amnesia had to give up the self he had become while in human form.

347K: Chapter book with some illustrations about a possessed plush Easter rabbit, with a human agoraphobic girl as the main character, possibly part of a holiday themed horror series? (Solved!)

The book is a chapter book, probably about elementary school reading level? Along the lines of goosebumps. I think I remember black and white illustrations scattered throughout the book, but not more than four or five I think. I remember some of the details pretty vividly because it was a very weird book, but I can’t remember the name and google searches for it just sort of turn into word salad.
 The main character is a girl who expresses a fear of almost everything (I remember that alien abduction is specifically mentioned as a reason she doesn’t want to go outside?). Her name was Katie or Emma or some other names that can have a lot of different nicknames. Her family goes to a mall where a mysterious/creepy Easter Bunny mascot gives her younger brother a plush Easter bunny, which he loves and she despises. The girl begins to hear “thumping” in the hallway and finds the plush in odd places, leading her to believe that the plush is alive and malevolent. Unrelated to the rabbit, there is a scene where she participates in a class play about the myth of Hades and Persephone and hallucinates that she sees the myth occurring out the window of the classroom.
The back half of the book is fuzzier for me. On Easter night (or the night before?), her brother goes missing (presumably kidnapped by the plush) and she has to go down a rabbit hole in her backyard(?) to follow the plush rabbit and save her brother. Somewhere along the way she finds a table setting with name cards that are all variations of her name, but none of them are the nickname she prefers and I think it’s probably symbolic of something? At some point in this journey she ends up on the moon. I think she has to make a declaration about how she will be brave and face her fears in order for the bunny/the universe (???) to give her brother back to her? I think the lesson learned was that you shouldn’t be scared of the unknown.
The blurb on the back of the book seemed to give me the impression that it was part of a holiday themed children’s horror series, but I don’t recall ever seeing anything that looked like it was from the same series

347C: Book series about a magic school for teens

The first book has a scene where the student almost dies due to a werewolf-like creature and is saved and recruited to a magic school. The school has a sanctuary for animals. The cooks at the school are Bob the troll and a hag who tries to eat the students on occasion. The main character learns how to the fight the werewolf-like creatures. The students play soccer on a magic field that changes (hills are added to the field during play). In one scene, the main character is in an art gallery and is almost killed, and the school is under attack in the last book of the series

345Z: Teen paperback series about pioneer girl

I read this probably 30+ years ago. It was a short series—3 or 4 books–normal sized paperbacks, not very thick, in the teen section of the library. I believe they were shelved in the last part of the alphabet, so the author’s last name will begin with something further along than M. I have a feeling that the name Sherwood was part of the author’s name, but I think it was the first name, not the last one, and I could be totally imagining that detail.

The one I remember best follows a early teen or tween girl who has been growing up as a tomboy in the West. Her mother is distressed at the rough behavior the girl has picked up from playing with her brothers and not being exposed to the more refined aspects of life. The girl is sent back east to spend an extended amount of time with relatives who are going to teach her to be “a lady”. I’m pretty sure she gets put into corsets, and there is a scene in which what sounds like some sort of torture device is used to “cure” her pigeon-toed gait. Her schooling appears to be focused on things like posture, and dancing and etiquette, and have almost no academic content. The girl is miserable and although I don’t remember how/why, she returns to her family in the west after a few months, instead of a few years as had been originally planned and there is a scene where as part of a dare from her brothers she walks the ridgepole of one of their buildings, and afterwards declares that all that fuss about posture and grace, and the “ladylike” way to walk was good for something since she won the dare.

I don’t remember if the other books in the series are about the same characters, or if they are about different people but set in the same time period/location.

344X: Secret Pointe Shoes

I had a flash of a memory of a childhood book.  I have googled and googled but can’t find it, and it is driving me crazy!!!  So here goes the parts I remember:

It was a book about girls, not sure how many, that take ballet classes at a studio which I think was located in a mall or a strip mall.  Rival studio that is fancier is a possibility but more vague memory of that so could be wrong.  One of the girls sees a pair of pointe shoes in the store that are an unusual color, maybe purple?  And she decides she wants to get them and learn how to use them, but she does it in secret because her ballet teacher says she is not at all ready to start with pointe.  There is something that makes her feel like she is less than the other girls and that leads her to use the pointe shoes in secret.  I think she even ruins her feet and ballet progress in the process.  I also want to say that it is a part of a series, either a ballet series or as a ballet focused book in a larger series.  Also very good chance it was a book fair book , I got a lot of books that way.

344W: Young Adults in Frontier America

I am searching for a young adult adventure series I read in the 70's, although I think the series was several decades old at the time. It was based on the adventures of young adults on the frontier of colonial, American Revolution and Post American Revolution America. Debby Boone was the main character of one book, and she leaves the message "D Boone cilled a bar" carved into a tree after dispatching a bear. Another book had the heir to the French throne being brought up in a cabin in the remote mountains of frontier America. The title of the series was something like "The Young Rifles" or the "Young Frontiersmen". I've never run across the series, but would love to find them.

344M: Historical Women Biographies For Kids

During the 1968-69 school year, when I was in fourth grade, I read a series of biographies on famous historical women from my school library. The ones I remember are Harriet Tubman, Joan of Arc, Florence Nightingale, and Clara Barton, but I think there were others as well. I believe they were hardcover in the style of Nancy Drew books, but possibly a different size. I’ve found many books about these women on Ebay from that time frame, but none that “match” as parts of a series. Does anyone recognize this book series? Thank you for any assistance.