This Is Washington DC

This is Washington, D.C. by M. Sasek.
W.H. Allen, 1969.

We're on our way to Washington, D.C.!  We will be in the city for a couple days before we head on to seaside New Jersey for a few days.  I'm so excited.  Tomorrow is my birthday.  I can't think of anything better than to be on a real "away" vacation with my family over my birthday.

So let's look at one more vintage book.

I love M. Sasek's travel picture books.  They are full of such vintage charm.  We've checked many of them out before, but I thought we might visit this one again before we leave.

I must admit I like the look of the earlier books in the series better.  (Paris, London, New York...)  This one is from 1969.  (There is a new edition available!)  What's nice about Washington, D.C., of course, is how much of the architecture and exhibits remain unchanged.  This book is less dated than some of the others.

We will definitely take in some sights.  We did drive by the Capitol on a Duck Tour on our visit to D.C. last spring...

But I really want the girls to see the Lincoln Memorial this time!

I've been on the White House lawn, but have never been inside.  I doubt we will head that direction this year.

We will visit the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum this time!  One of Amelia Earhart's planes is there, you know.  Little Sis is plane- and Amelia-obsessed!

Last year, we made it through the Museums of American History and Natural History.  It was Easter Sunday.  The Museum of Natural History was packed.  Little Sis couldn't enjoy herself.  Her sister just goes with the flow...

Okay, now I don't think we will be visiting Smokey the Bear...  (I still remember the song we used to sing in Brownies.  "Smokey the Bear, Smokey the Bear/ a-prowlin' and a-growlin' and a-sniffin' at the air/  He can find a fire before it starts to flame/ That's why they call him Smokey/ that is how he got his name.")

Mr. B and I love this page spread the best.  "In Georgetown, there are many strange visitors," the text reads.

So as I said, tomorrow is my birthday.  Last year, I made a just-for-fun wish list for myself.  We were already back from our Branson/Laura Ingalls Wilder vacation by then.  As I said above, I'm so excited for this vacation that I don't really care about presents.  But let's pretend I'm feeling more materialistic, okay?

Tee hee.  That was fun.  The idea of the wish list is to feature what I like, as opposed to what I'd like for the girls.  I notice that Alice and Oz will always appeal to me, though.  (Oh, and expensive dolls.)

I have posts scheduled for next week, including a guest post.  I will try to answer comments, check other blogs, etc., but I can't make any promises!  I wish everyone a wonderful weekend!

Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz

Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz by L. Frank Baum, illustrated by John R. Neill.
Originally published by Reilly & Britton, 1908.
Books Of Wonder edition published by HarperCollins, 1990.

Our travels through the Baum fairylands continue with Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz, the fourth book in the series.  Dorothy is in California when an earthquake hits, sending her carriage through a hole in the earth.  Dorothy, her kitten (Eureka), the boy driving the carriage (Zeb), and the old cab-horse (Jim) find themselves in a strange glass land, deep underground.  It's the Land of the Mangaboos, where the people are really heartless vegetables who grow on vines until they are ripe.  Soon after their arrival, a hot air balloon falls down toward the village.  It's the Wonderful Wizard of Oz himself!  And another adventure through the fairylands begins.

Let us now pause to admire the endpapers.  Drool.  I love beautiful endpapers...

Once again, we are reading the Books of Wonder facsimile edition.  These truly are the best editions currently available new.  Once again, John R. Neill is the illustrator, as he will remain for many years to come.  Neill painted this one in watercolors, one of only two Oz books he illustrated in this manner.

There are many charming bits in this book.  I'm especially fond of the Wizard's nine tiny piglets.  We're zipping through it at a pretty brisk pace, which makes me very happy.  As enjoyable as this one is, the next book in the series, The Road to Oz, is one of my very favorites.  We'll become reacquainted with Toto, and we'll meet The Shaggy Man, Button Bright, and Polychrome, the Rainbow's Daughter.  I'm so excited!


The Little Boy Who Ran Away (A Bonnie Book)

The Little Boy Who Ran Away (A Bonnie Book)
by Lucy [MacDonald], illustrated by Emmo [Martian].
Kenosha, WI:  John Martin's House, Inc./James & Jonathan Company, 1946.

More cheapie children's goodness from the past for you today!  I've shown off quite a few Little Golden Books and Tell-A-Tales, some Elf and Junior Elf, and a Ding Dong School title.  Today's book is a Bonnie Book.  I really need a good children's book collecting guide, but from what I can gather, Bonnie Books were published by James & Jonathan Company of Kenosha, Wisconsin.  (Little Golden Books & Whitmans were printed in Racine.)  John Martin's House was the publishing company of John Martin's Book, a popular children's magazine during the early part of the twentieth century.  Bonnie Books were another line of inexpensive, mass-market books for children.

This book is quite amusing to me.  The illustrations are darling.  When we meet the little boy, Toby, he is almost reminiscent of a Betsey Clark illustration.  Toby is tired of doing all the things he's supposed to do, so he decides to run away.  He winds up in the country, where he explores the farm and has a lot of fun.  Then it starts to rain and he gets scared.  Lucky for him, the familiar neighborhood mail carrier appears, and takes him home, where Toby's sweetly smiling mother awaits him at the door.  On the last page, Toby is contentedly eating a sandwich.  "Guess I like home best of all," said Toby.

I don't really think I need to comment on any of that, tee hee.  Here are a few pictures from the book.

Doll Bones

Doll Bones by Holly Black.

Illustrations by Eliza Wheeler.

Margaret K. McElderry Books,
an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing Division.


This weekend, I discovered I have quite a few friends who are creeped out by dolls.

If you are one of those people, you may or may not want to check out Doll Bones.  

Of course, I am a person who enjoys creepy stuff.  Especially creepy kids' books, which I find are often creepier than books geared toward adults.  (See Splendors and Glooms - scroll down.)

There isn't much I can say about this book without giving too much away.  It's about three friends.  They are at that age.  That horrible age between playing make-believe and growing up.  And it's about a doll.  A doll who may or may not be possessed by a ghost.  

I would guess this book is best for kids aged 9 to 12 or so.  I will say, my girls keep picking it up and looking at it.  (I didn't read it to them.)  Strangely enough, Little Sis expressed her desire this weekend to decorate her room with jars and baskets of old doll heads.  I know this is something she saw at the antique store recently, but it was such a funny request that I started a Pinterest board for her, all about decorating with dolls.  (And doll pieces.)  Friends of mine have even offered their own doll head collections.  Oh, my little ones and their macabre streaks...

I like dolls.  I was never creeped out by them.  Of course, I like clowns, too - especially the old-fashioned variety you see in old Lon Chaney movies and circus posters.  I have dolls hanging out with my books in the living room, in fact.

The bottom one is Scarlett O'Hara, by the way.  My great-aunt made her.

For more doll fun, check out my Pinterest boards:  here, here, here, and here.

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