Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Reader Rantings --"The Bumper Book"

In my opinion, reading is, by far, the best pasttime. It is portable, if you read in the daytime it doesn't require electricity, you can read as long as you want or stop when you want -- not subject to network programming schedules and definitely NOT preempted by a "special report" and, if you use the public library systems (which we all should do), it can be free. What more could anybody want in the way of entertainment?

I was a voracious reader as a child and young adult and my love of reading was "inflicted" on my children because I began reading to them the moment they were born. We would visit the library every two weeks, tote home armloads of books and read and re-read our favorites.

One of my favorite books was "The Bumper Book" by Watty Piper and illustrated by Eulalie. It was published in 1946 by Platt & Munk. To my young eyes, this was the most gorgeous book imaginable. The illustrations are very old-fashioned, rich, colorful and interesting -- the more you look at them, the more you see. The stories and the verses are familiar and can be read over and over again.

This book is, sadly, out of print. It can be obtained, for a pretty penny, on Ebay but I found a copy at our local antique mall. I just felt that our Moochi would lose out if he didn't have a copy of this book so I searched until I found one. I think I got it for a reasonable price (define reasonable!) of under $50. It was in pretty good shape and I was pleased that I was able to find it.

I have read the book to Moochi several times and while I think he enjoyed it I know I did! Everytime I read the alphabet verse I get tickled and I still know "Christopher Robin" by heart -- such wonderful memories -- every child should have them!

So, the next time you are looking for a special gift for a child, try to find a copy of "The Bumper Book". It might not be perfect anymore but that worn cover will just be an indication of how much it was loved and used by a child before.