I hope I have the pleasure of introducing author/illustrator Peter Newell‘s (1862-1924) work to someone here, as I only recently discovered it myself. He began his artist’s life using crayons to ‘paint’ portraits, before turning to children’s books. The following two classics are the ones I could get through my library system – maybe you can get The Hole Book through yours. If you can’t – go to Project Gutenberg to view all three ebooks.
Author/Illustrator: Peter Newell
Publisher: Harper & Brothers, 1910; Tuttle Publishing, 1969
Age Level: 4 and up, way up!
Themes: shaped/novelty book, American town life, story in rhyme
Opening: Where Bobby lives there is a hill-, A hill so steep and high, ‘Twould fill the bill for Jack and Jill, Their famous act to try
Summary: (From Tuttle) In The Slant Book, a go cart, a newsboy, and the force of gravity make for a most excellent adventure in a busy American town. As an added bonus, the book is actually set on a slant!!
Buy a new edition direct from Tuttle for $16.95
Publisher: Harper & Brothers, 1912; Tuttle Publishing, 1969
Age Level: 4 and up, way WAY up!
Themes: novelty book, story in rhyme, rockets
Opening: The Basement: When Fritz, the janitor’s bad kid, Went snooping in the basement, He found a rocket snugly hid Beneath the window casement.
Summary: (From Library of Congress) The upward progress of a rocket, lit in the basement by the janitor’s son, causes some strange situations as it passes through 20 floors of apartments!
Why I like these books: Are you kidding? You don’t think I have to explain it, do you? Didn’t think so!
Resources/Activities: make your own novelty books or cards – HERE is a link to the how-to site of the contemporary pop-up master: Robert Sabuda; introduce turn-of-the-(20th)-century kids’ life with both books; use the The Slant book to discuss gravity and make a list of items in the classroom that might roll first if the room were on a slant.
As a treat for hanging with me this long – the trailer to this SNAP animated app: