Friday, June 24, 2011

Today's Treasures from the Used Book Store

Grandma and grandpa have baby Jackson on Friday afternoons and I left work early--let's say it was because of the company's official Summer Fridays policy and not because I could give a fig about my job--so I had a little time to hit a couple of thrift stores on the way home, looking for more books for the kiddo's library. Because of the early hour I dared brave Santa Monica Blvd. in the vicinity of the 405, which takes me past the NCJW shop and a Goodwill. The NCJW was a total wash, with horrible parking to boot, but the Goodwill had a couple of gifts to give up. I have to stop shopping there though, since the prices are quite high as far as used books go.

(1) Horton Hears a Who adds to the collection of Seuss I'm building for the kiddo. I was afraid I already had it, but upon double-check, I was thinking of its predecessor Horton Hatches an Egg. Jackson spotted the book immediately when I put him in the car, and happily flipped through the pages from his carseat on the way home. I tried a formal read when we got home, but he wasn't having it no matter how much I emphasized, "But...elephants!"

(2) I've long heard tell of The 13 Clocks by James Thurber and I couldn't be more in love with this copy, which is a treasure of character. I barreled through the whole thing tonight, and this book is like one long language-gasm. Your child will get a perfect verbal SAT score just from standing near the vocabulary words, and he or she will know everything there is to know about the hero's journey without ever having encountered Joseph Campbell. There are apparently two illustrated versions of The 13 Clocks, this is the earlier version by Marc Simont, and his work reminds me of another one of my mid-century faves, Joan Kiddell-Monroe.

No dustjacket on this volume (I believe this is the original dustjacket artwork) but don't worry, a helpful past owner has written the title on the front board!

Illustrated endpaper with note: "I had this book since i was in 8th grade. I am 13 years old going to 14. When i grow up i will pass this to my kids"

Just when you think it couldn't get any cuter, you find a Hello Kitty bookmark securing pages 31 through 38. 

And now, for you illustration junkies...

The lady Saralinda

The 13 clocks of the title

The dastardly Duke

The Golux's alcoholic stag-horned wizard father (what--doesn't everybody have one of those?)

The road to Hagga's hut

Spoiler alert: Saralinda's nurse was a spell-casting witch!

The hero of the tale, and his mysterious advisor, the Golux.

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