Wednesday January 21, 2004

Childhood Memories, Childhood Books

A friend of mine wrote to me
... Clare Turlay Newberry - one of my all time favorite authors of children's books/illustrator of cats. She wrote and illustrated Pandora, the book from my childhood. ... I finally, after many years, have purchased Pandora and am looking forward to receiving the book. As a child, I wanted Pandora as my cat so much.

From my friend's glowing description, I hunted up a copy of Pandora for myself and am now also a fan of the drawings of Clare Turlay Newberry. Her cats are so real; how could I resist them?

A few days later my friend wrote

[My copy of Pandora] arrived today too. I almost cried when I opened it - like seeing an old friend. I don't remember there being color on the cover! Does yours have the paper cover? This one does. It shows its age - geez almost as old as I am (I was two when it was published)! Let's just say it shows much less wear than I do...

But as I reread Pandora's story...well, you know. Finally getting this book is a small treasure to the little girl that lies within...yes, still there even after 60 years...isn't that amazing?

My little girl within is still with me, too. Occasionally, I give her a book as well. Four years ago I found her a copy of Junior Jamboree for Boys :-)

When I was 5 years old, a colleague of my Dad's (Bob Allen) invited our family (Mom, Dad, my younger sister, and me) to spend 2 weeks at his parent's cabin in the Adirondacks in upper New York State on the Great Sacandaga Lake. Oh, it's lovely up there.

We went back the next year and every year thereafter until I was 18.

There were a lot of books at the cabin (well, not "a lot" but plenty enough to interest a child who had two weeks to explore). The Allens had two sons, my Dad's colleague and his older brother, much older than my sister and I; several of their old favorites were at the cabin. I don't recall how old I was when I discovered Junior Jamboree for Boys. It quickly became a great favorite of mine; I read through it every year.

Four years ago this month it occurred to me to look for a copy on the web and I found one! Actually, I found two and bought one for my sister. She hadn't read it as thoroughly or as many times as I did, all those years ago, but it brought back memories for her too.

Just having that book is special to me.

What childhood books evoke special memories for you?

Childhood Memories, Childhood Books ( in category Books, Movies, Music ) - posted at Wed, 21 Jan, 17:50 Pacific | «e»