The other day I was at the library, researching picture books for my next manuscript. Always, I have my idea, I write it then I go see what's in the marketplace that might be similar. I really don't want to redo something that's already been done. I've gotten into trouble by not checking out books that could be similar to mine...SO!
I noticed a book I'd been looking for since I started on this writing journey. I couldn't think of the name but remember the images vividly from my childhood (back in the 70's). This book is entitled, The Big Tidy Up, by Norah Smaridge. After perusing the rhyming text, it most decidely has a moral--Jennifer's room is a big mess! Mom lets her drown in her own mess until at the end, Jennifer decides she better clean up her act.
What transfixed me the most was the artwork done by Les Gray. It was a Golden Book, which is not surprising since my family wasn't rich and all of my books came from the grocery store. I doubt I'd ever entered a bookstore until I was an adult!
Although this book probably couldn't get published today (the moral is way too overt), it's one of those books that brings back heartwarming memories to me. I'm thrilled I found it! (And it's very PINK!)
Here are some of my favorite inside pages:
Jennifer in her state of MESS! (notice the desheveled hair!)
Here's Jennifer all cleaned up. I loved how the illustrator made her match. I, too, liked wearing dresses at the time (I was four) and matching hair ribbons. I never owned a pair of shoes like these, but I slipped into Jennifer's world whenever I'd read this.
Do you have a favorite childhood book?