an old favorite

There are times, mostly during the winter, that I don't make it to the library. I intended to go inside last week when I dropped off my books, but the police had the street blocked off (?) and I drove around on a fruitless search for a parking space. I gave up looking, slipped my books into the drive-up book drop, and went on my way.

But, that left me with nothing new to read. So, I revisited an old favorite from my bookshelves—The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame. I'd read this a long time ago and picked up this newly-illustrated version at a book sale a couple of years ago.

It's been on my mind to reread this since my friend Camilla posted a picture of one of those weird English animals that we don't seem to have here in the states. When I asked what it was she said it was the same creature that Mr. Rat was based on—a water rat. Perhaps we do have them here but I've never seen one. This week she posted a picture of a toad (just like Mr. Toad!) on her new gardening blog.

Anyway, great book and worth a visit if you've never read it or can't remember when you did. I love the black and white cross-hatchy illustrations done by Patrick Benson in this version. He also did the art for the sequel The Willows in Winter by William Horwood, which I have not read and will add to my running list of books to look for. Yes, I have one of those and regularly carry it with me to the library!


Anonymous said...

I loved this book too, and have fond childhood memories of my mother reading it to me at bed-time. I was very scared by the whole Mr. Toad in prison thing, though. I have not seen this newly illustrated edition and will look for it. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

I have a copy that was given to my husband as a wee one in 1970. The illustrations are by Tasha Tudor. WE just finished this as a read aloud. We read aloud daily at "tea time". Not proper English tea, I am sure. But, good enough. We have tea in a tea pot - often loose! We have a pastry of some sort and fruit. The children love it.


I really like your blog, nice!

Greetings from The Netherlands

Brenda@CoffeeTeaBooks said...

The Wind in the Willows is my favorite "children's book" and one of my all time favorite books.

The illustrations of hospitality and home are among the most charming in all of literature!

Maggie Ann said...

I love this book and keep a copy on my nightstand. Mr.Toad is so down to earth...and charming.

Brahdelt said...

I love this book, too, although I never read it as a child, I found it much later. ^^ And I love the Monty Python's movie!

Anonymous said...

I was searching for a good place to learn embrodiery stitches and was referred to your site. I cannot open the pictures. Is this a function of your blog or do I have to be a member to open pictures?


janet said...

Anonymous - the photos on my Stitch School posts are hosted at Flickr but they are not clickable there. The originals aren't any larger in size than shown here on my blog so there didn't seem any point in linking to them. I also don't want anyone else copying them or hotlinking to them for copyright reasons.

If the photos aren't visible on the blog then that's another problem all together. And one I'm not sure what to do about.

Anonymous said...

It was one of my favorite books as a child, there was a good version of it on the BBC over Christmas which my daughter really enjoyed so it's on the reading list to read with her along with The Secret Garden, Swallows and Amazons and many others that O loved and hope she will too.
Love your stitch library!

Jen said...

There's something about returning to those beloved childhood favourites! That's a beautiful copy of the book, by the way.