As promised in an earlier post, below I share a few titles that Penguin Random House has rescued from the Grosset & Dunlap archives and reprinted in time for the holidays. Established in 1898, G&D published many of the English-speaking world’s favorite story books for ages 0-12 years, including the Nancy Drew Series and The Hardy Boys. For the past several years G&D has reprinted several of its Wonder Book bestsellers of the 1940’s, 50’s, and 60’s for folks who want to share their childhood favorites with their children or grandchildren. This year, they have three titles on offer, including one holiday title. The comfortable old-fashioned look and feel of the stories revives some cultural touchstones and values.
The Baby Elephant, written by Benjamin Brewster and Illustrated by Peter Burchard, is the story of a circus baby elephant who wandered away from his mother and found himself following a farmer’s cart away from the fair. Eventually he finds himself back with his mother, after some exhausting adventures. This is surely a book young children will enjoy again and again, imagining the fearsome prospect of wandering away from one’s mother in a crowd, and being returned safely. Ages 3-5.
The Fixit Man written by Irma Wilde and illustrated by George Wilde, tells the story of Jimmy Jinks who travelled far and wide to fix people’s equipment, making everyone happy. This is also billed as Ages 3-5, though it occurred to me that the vocabulary was such that a slightly older child (around 7 years old) could possibly read it to a younger one, learning a few new words along the way.
And finally, this year we also have the story of ”The Christmas Puppy written and illustrated by Irma Wilde. A little girl, Polly, is a little late in sending her gift requests to Santa and he discovers he does not have enough stuffed puppy toys for all the children asking for them. In what would surely be both joy & grief for a parent, Santa instead brings a real puppy, Inky, for Polly’s stocking. This book, with its detailed drawings, is sure to be a favorite, so maybe be careful if you absolutely do not want a pet for Christmas. Ages 3-5.here for a link to the G+D Vintage website.
• Bunny Hopwell’s Frist Spring by Jean Fritz
• The Too Little Fire Engine by Jane Flory
• The Noisy Clock Shop by Jean H. Berg, Illustrated by Art Selden
• My ABC Book Illustrated by Art Selden
• Mr. Wishing Went Fishing by Irma Wilde, Illustrated by George Wilde
• The Animals’ Vacation by Shel Haber; Illustrated by Jan Haber
• The Bingity-Bangity School Bus by Fleur Conkling; Illustrated by Ruth Wood
You can buy this book here: