"My books are friends that never fail me."
These are the books that inspired this posting. They showed up in my Christmas post, and I got letter after letter from book lovers who wanted all the information on them. Then Deborah Jean wrote me and ordered some copies. We decided to do a co-op post about some of the books we love. Oh heavens, what a can of worms I opened. I love so many books, so many topics, and I've collected them my entire life. And, luckily, I inherited or was gifted some of my favorites from my Grandmother Lovejoy, author Ethel Pochocki, my neighbor and dear friend Kate Pemberton Stearns, Lynn Karlin, Susan Branch, Marilyn Brewer, and so many more. The books are memories, cherished treasures, and a part of my life I could never imagine doing without. The ones I'm featuring now are old, but there are so many new and wonderful books that deserve their own place in the sun. Maybe in the coming months?
This is the book of poetry that Grandmother and I shared.
It is dated 1900.
Some of my earliest memories are of my Grandmother Lovejoy snugged into her favorite, over stuffed chair with her tattered book of Robert Louis Stevenson's A Child's Garden of Verses spread open on her lap. I sat beside her as she read to me in a soft, sing-song voice, and I followed along, trying to make sense of the magical black marks called an alphabet that brought the books to life.
I can't imagine a home without books. Their presence is a comfort to me and a promise of hours of joyful and peaceful reading, adventures, discoveries, and so much more.
The title says it all.
Ok, I'll admit it-sometimes I fall in love with a cover, and yes, sometimes you can judge a book by its cover.
Here are some of my favorites, and they're as great inside as they are outside.
I learned about this Edith Wharton book while reading Emelie Tolley's column in the old Victoria magazine. She was right, this is fabulous. Check out what is going on with Emelie now. She is as busy and creative as ever.
A birthday gift from my pal Marilyn.
A gift from Kate, one of my most treasured friends who recently passed away. She wore through some of the pages of this book when she was a child.
Rosebud and Red Flannel, a gift from my dear friend Ethel Pochocki.
A gift from my friend Susan Branch. She found this for me when she and Joe were traveling through England. I love this!
Covers, pages, and sometimes, even the endpapers like the ones below send me into ecstasy.
These are the endpapers drawn by Damariscotta, Maine, artist Jake Day for the book Houseboat Summer by Elizabeth Coatsworth of Nobleboro, Maine. Elizabeth was one of the first authors to win the most important award in children's literature, the Newbery Medal. Elizabeth and her husband Henry Beston (author of The Outermost House-a year on Cape Cod) lived in this houseboat on Damariscotta Lake. I have ALWAYS wanted to live on a houseboat, and this one looks perfect to me.
This is a portion of a poem from my Grandmother's book of Robert Louis Stevenson poetry.
Faretheewell for now. Won't you visit a neighborhood bookshop and enrich your life with a book you love? I promise, you'll never regret the time you spend with them.
P.S. We have great antiquarian bookstores in Maine. Why not meander up our coastline and have a bookish adventure?