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I Love…Golden Books

Sunday January 22nd, 2012, 2 years, 9 months and 6 days ago

Before I get started singing the praises of Golden Books, I’m happy to announce that my contact page has just been freshly installed on my site! Come & help me test that everything’s working & in order, by sending me an email. Just come & say hi, & I’ll say hi back! I was going to put my info page up today too, but it’s getting late & I have dinner to make (vegan leek & “feta” pastries!), so I’ll make sure to do it during the week.

Just Like Me, written & illustrated by Leonard Weisgard, 1954

Now, down to business… I bet a lot of you grew up reading Golden Books. I love that they were such an accessible way to get kids reading & appreciating great illustration. Earlier this week, I was working on a picture, & it occurred to me that it was strangely reminiscent of the spine & endpapers of a Golden Book. It was purely incidental, but it just goes to show what sponges we are as children. How the things we read impact on us in such a profound way. Googling Golden Books today, I discovered this fabulous blog, sadly no longer updated, but it’s a little gold[en book]mine of mid-20th century illustration. I’ve posted the merest snippet of what you’ll find there, from some of my favourite illustrators, such as Richard Scarry & the amazing Alice & Martin Provensen. I owned this edition of A Child’s Garden of Verses & a few of their other books. I wish I still had them!

A Child’s Garden of Verses, written by Robert Louis Stevenson & illustrated by Alice and Martin Provensen, 1951

The Happy Little Handsaw, written by Robert E. Mahaffay & illustrated by Milli Eaton, 1955

The Golden Calendar, illustrated by Richard Scarry, 1956

14 Responses to I Love…Golden Books

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  1. Kate Nancarrow says:

    Oooohhhhhh – I adore the wonderful Provensen duo! Don’t hate me, hon, bu I have the Child’s Book of Garden Verses by them! What can I say? My opshops are gold mines….i’d be super-happy to keep an eye out for you! I’m just visiting Arizona at the moment, yes, how Lucky Ducky am I….?!, and I’m having the BEST time at their Thrift Stores. Oh. My. Goodness! I also have a few others by Alice & Martin, being far away from my book shelves, I’m struggling for titles, but The William Blake Inn is a very memorable one. A recent publication, too, as in only recently made, not a re-edition. It won one of those lovely big golden children’s book awards. Oh, gawd, Karena, I could talk books with you FOREVER. At this very moment, though, a shower before VEGAS ROAD TRIP (yes, I’m a mixer-upper of life!) Thanks for all your gorgeous blogging, mea culpa for not telling you mid regularly!

    Reply to Kate Nancarrow Jan 23rd 2012, 2 yrs and 9 mths ago
    • Karena (Magic Jelly) says: magicjelly.com.au

      I think I need a quiet moment to go & deal with my Provensen & Vegas road trip envy…

      I hope you’re having a marvelous time over there – hope you don’t get stuck with an enormous excess baggage charge from all the thrift shop treasure you bring home too! :)

      Reply to Karena (Magic Jelly) Jan 23rd 2012, 2 yrs and 9 mths ago
  2. Woow, Thanks so much! what a treasure!

    Reply to Noar Jan 23rd 2012, 2 yrs and 9 mths ago
  3. Stevette says:

    Yay! I love the Golden Books. They really had some of the best illustrators working for them, didn’t they? I can’t remember what it’s called but as a kid I loved the one about a boy who sends a letter to his grandma and it traces the letter’s journey…

    Reply to Stevette Jan 25th 2012, 2 yrs and 9 mths ago
  4. I grew up reading Golden Books and so did my kids. They were always so colorful and that is one thing that really got a child’s attention. The stories were always so good and they were books that you would keep and pass down or just keep therm for yourself.

    Reply to Debra Jan 28th 2012, 2 yrs and 9 mths ago
    • Karena (Magic Jelly) says: magicjelly.com.au

      That’s one of the best things about Golden Books – that you would swap them & pass them down & inherit them. I wish I still had mine!

      Reply to Karena (Magic Jelly) Feb 21st 2012, 2 yrs and 8 mths ago
  5. Drinkmoretea says: pompomparlour.blogspot.com

    Aah Golden Books. Sadly a lot have been re-illustarted for the modern eye.
    I will never grow out of the originals, especially Mary Blair and Richard Scarry’s illustrations.

    Ps: My favourite ever is Pantaloon. I also like the story to Little Boy with a Big Horn & Mr.Dog, a lot, they are both fun to read aloud.

    Reply to Drinkmoretea Feb 4th 2012, 2 yrs and 8 mths ago
    • Karena (Magic Jelly) says: magicjelly.com.au

      Have they?? What a shame! I think the classic illustrations have just as much appeal to kids these days as they did 60 years ago. Ironic that so many illustrators nowadays are influenced by Mary Blair, The Provensens, etc.

      Reply to Karena (Magic Jelly) Feb 21st 2012, 2 yrs and 8 mths ago
  6. I absolutely adore these kinds of illustrations! Especially anything by Mary Blair.

    Reply to Monica Feb 12th 2012, 2 yrs and 8 mths ago
  7. julian says:

    I love the Happy Little Handsaw!

    Reply to julian Feb 13th 2012, 2 yrs and 8 mths ago

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