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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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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