Something for everyone: Book reviews from The Book Loft

Here are the happy books I bought from The Book Loft, as I wrote in my recent post. My goal was to gather a collection in which every member of my family could find something to savor.

Some of the titles are special not only because they are classics, but because they are special editions. At discount prices. If you don’t like the online rates, which incidentally are not too shabby, visit The Book Loft yourself, try your local library, or borrow my copies. Grin.

Great Expectations

By Charles Dickens

This remains my favorite of Charles Dickens’ novels, probably because it is the first one I understood. I mentioned before how sometimes one book unlocks an author. In Great Expectations, I finally connected with Dickens’ humor, his willful caricatures of otherwise normal people, and his carefully blended brew of the disturbing and the winsome. (Though at times I still resent the way he painted women: invariably sheer angels, or fiends.)

I owned this book only on Kindle, and I like paper best.

A Wrinkle in Time

By Madeleine L’Engle

Part reality, part social commentary,* and part sci-fi, the Murry family books are now classic stories of children’s battles toward maturity and peace on earth. I like L’Engle, though her ideas regularly push me around. I thought my older boys were ready for this set.

*(I made that up about it being social commentary. It sounds good though, and seems mostly true to me.)

Some readers are put off by the fantastical elements, including questionable characters. I find the children endearing and the issues real.

I bought a 50th anniversary commemorative edition.

stopping woods snowy evening robert frost

Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening

By Robert Frost and Susan Jeffers

Here is a really special edition of one of my favorite poems: a children’s picture book. Jeffers creates beautiful illustrations to accompany Frost’s simple text.

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

By Arthur Conan Doyle
1887 and following

Online, I cannot find the exact edition I purchased. The subtitle of mine is “twelve sparkling stories from the master of detective fiction.” It’s hardcover, and beautifully illustrated. The closest I can find is the one I linked here, which contains additional Holmes stories and is set up similarly, with a two-column page and good illustrations. Charming!

winnie pooh giant lift flap book milne shepard

Winnie-the-Pooh’s Giant Lift-the-Flap Book

Inspired by Milne and Shepard

Fun learning about shapes, alphabets, opposites, and more, with 70 flaps to open. Good for 2- to 4-year-old hands. I like the classic Pooh illustrations.

A Little House Picture Book Treasury: six stories of life on the prairie

Adapted from the books by Laura Ingalls Wilder

Though I will always love the original Little House books best, I really like the picture books too, released by HarperCollins. This edition is a gilt-edged treasury of six, with lovely illustrations and easy-to-read text. Excellent for reading aloud.

Counting by 7’s also appears in my stack and was purchased at The Book Loft, but I will publicly review it later with other books on fostering and adoption. Worth reading. That’s all for now.

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Geneva Eby
4 years ago

Love what you said about L’Engle pushing you around. I feel the same way. 🙂

Tabitha Schmidt
4 years ago

I always enjoy your book reviews. Such lovely books! This makes me want to go back the The Book Loft. I was there years ago with my husband, and I also loved German Village.
Have you read the Austin family series by L’Engle? I consider her a favorite author, but your description of her ideas pushing you around is an apt one.
Can’t wait to hear more about Counting by Sevens! I loved that book.

4 years ago

Finding a treasure for every member of the family to savor… That sounds like my infrequent trips to Chester Creek Books in Duluth. It’s one of my best places. 😉

Needing Miracles
4 years ago

Right now, I am enjoying listening to Counting by 7s, book on CD I borrowed from the library. I have also, at your recommendation, borrowed and listened to A Wrinkle in Time and Great Expectations. Thank you for the suggestions. I especially like Counting by 7s. I’m enjoying these while driving, which is when I have time for the luxury of a story just for fun.
Now, about your most recent post:
May God give you a sense of knowing His Presence is “there” even when you can’t feel it. It takes more faith to believe when you can’t feel Him than what it does when you can feel Him. I love how you are clinging to Him in the midst of the pain. Clinging to Him too, in my need for miracles. Suffering does not have easy answers.

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