Wednesday 30 January 2008

Bye, Spot!

Amused to see what Adam at Crockatt and Powell Booksellers has been getting up to with some favourite children's books. They really suit my jaundiced mood and made me laugh. (Laugh, that is, with the crazed cackle of the Seasonally Affected Editor whose deadlines are all clashing and whose favourite (ancient) FatFace trousers just fell apart in the wash.)

Here are a couple of examples - there are lots more here and (by special request) here (though please don't click if you're below a certain age or likely to be offended!)

Have any other weary, jaded parents ever got to the stage where they can read The Very Hungry Caterpillar and other favourites aloud while actually thinking about something completely different (and I mean completely different!) and then come to with a start when it's finished and think 'oh, where am I?' - without the hapless young listener having noticed that anything is amiss?

After 14 years I have it down to a fine art.

I do like Eric Carle's books a lot, but I've always seriously had it in for Spot. Hate the pics, hate the bland, unimaginative 'stories', hate (with a deep, brooding, black malevolence) the videos, hate the fact that I have spent several hours of my life laboriously sellotaping and pritt-sticking all the little lift-up flaps back on, time after time.

I finally sent the whole lot of them to the Mersea Island Charity Shop last year - hooray! So this one is very apt.

Thanks Adam. Please come up with more sooooooon!

Oh, and I do commend C&P's lively blog to book lovers everywhere, especially any who have ever worked on the other side of the counter. I particularly enjoyed this recent post on the future of 'real' books.


monix said...

These are very funny, J, and I can recall the tedious sessions with very young children.
However, (hoping not to sound pompous!) I have to defend Spot books. These were the first books to appear in special editions for deaf children. The oh so boringly simple sentences were perfect for depicting in sign language and my pupils were delighted to have books they could 'read' by themselves.
I do love the irreverent take on the titles, though.

Juliet said...

Oh dear, sorry! I take it all back! I had never realised that Spot had been so altruistic, so thank you for stopping my irrational loathing in its tracks!

I've never quite been able to put my finger exactly on *why*, alone amongst the myriad other simple, repetitive, flap-ridden pre-school books my children had, Spot always brought me out in a rash [pun intended]. But he did and I'm still pleased to have elminated him from my house at last!

Ditto the Mister Men. (But don't get me started on those . . .)

monix said...

I don't say I enjoyed 'em, J, but I felt the need to put in a good word.