Welcome to the Stump the Bookseller blog! Stump the Bookseller is a service offered by Loganberry Books to reconnect people to the books they love but can’t quite remember. In brief (for more detailed information see our About page), people can post their memories here, and the hivemind goes to work. After all, the collective mind of bibliophiles, readers, parents and librarians around the world is much better than just a few of us thinking. Together with these wonderful Stumper Magicians, we have a nearly 50% success rate in finding these long lost but treasured books. The more concrete the book description, the better the success rate, of course. It is a labor of love to keep it going, and there is a modest fee. Please see the How To page to find price information and details on how to submit your Book Stumper and payment.
Thanks to everyone involved to keep this forum going: our blogging team, the well-read Stumper Magicians, the many referrals, and of course to everyone who fondly remembers the wonder of books from their childhood and wants to share or revisit that wonder. Isn’t it amazing, the magic of a book?
A picture book I read around 1995 about a woman with grown children who lived in different areas – a farm, the city, the mountains, the beach. She retired, bought an airstream(?) and visited each child before returning to the farm. An apple farm?
A fantasy middle-grade novel I read in the mid-80s, with a green Chinese dragon on the cover. The dragon belonged to a Chinese girl who rode it in a circus and put on a thick Chinese accent for the punters, but could actually speak English perfectly.
She was one of the magical characters helping the two child protagonists on their adventure: another was a witch who had long hair which flew about when she was casting spells. She made an illusory double of one of the children (called a Semblance) so they wouldn’t be missed.
At one point the protagonists and their flying carpet were swallowed by some kind of evil spirit that had a dark stormy space inside it. They started calling the spirit the Glutton to make fun of it, and the witch put her head in her hands as if she was despairing so nobody could see her hair flying about when she used her magic to get them out.
Parents go out for the evening to opera (Madame Butterfly?). The child(ren) cope(s) with a babysitter. I think the babysitter is referred to as the onion lady and she wears many layers of clothes?? circa 1970’s.
Just hoping that you can help me locate a book / story…
There was a line about parades, cotton wool in your ears, cotton wool in your mouth and perhaps mention of wooden teeth. The book/story It is at least 45 years old and may have been a German/Russian/Polish or British Fable or Fairytale.
The book is a children’s picture book about a little girl in witch school, or living with witches. But she is not a witch, or she doesn’t look like one, but she is pretending. Every day she puts on her robe and hat, and also a fake witch’s nose to hide her small nose. The book had line drawing illustrations (black and white), and at least one involved spiders and her bed. The girl was swept away by a real witch on Halloween, having been mistaken for a real witch girl, and finds herself at this school quite by mistake. I’m afraid this is quite a stumper, as I have only the fuzziest recollections of the book, but would know the illustrations instantly. I have looked and looked, and can’t find it!
I can’t remember the title of the book but I vaguely remember something about a bird maybe. I do however, remember some plot of the book. There was a boy who grew up from nothing, he is very charming and everyone loves him. He makes a best friend another boy and they travel together. They meet a girl and she is completely devoted to the charming boy, but he doesn’t spare her the time of day. The best friend is taken with her. At the end of the story there is a tournament to win the kingdom and the hand of a lady. The charming boy wants her really bad but she already has a guy and when they fight in the tournament the lady’s guy loses and charming guy wins the kingdom and her hand in marriage. The plot twist was that the lady and her guy stab the charming guy in the back and he ends up dying at the very end. His best friend takes over and gets vengeance on the lady’s guy. And he ends up ruling the kingdom with the girl that charming guy had no time for.
My teacher, in either elementary or middle school, read a book to our class about siblings who went to their grandmothers (or aunt’s) house to live for the summer. If I recall, one of the siblings, maybe the girl didn’t want to go. They play outside in the gardens and orchard and end up trying to solve a mystery which ends up having to do with a dollhouse.
I was born in the late 1960’s. There was a children’s book that had to have been published before 1973 that I remember that had these illustrations it in about either a mole, a rabbit or a mouse whose family lived underground. The book had illustrated cut-aways that showed the ground above, the tunnels going down and their little house down in the earth (like a little kitchen, bed, etc.). For years it has been driving me nuts trying to find this book. So if you have any information please let me know.
I read this book in the late 1950’s or early 1960’s. It was in our school library. It was about a boy who was hired to carry the mail along the Florida coast before any development of the Florida coast took place. Along the way he saw many interesting sights and had various adventures. Finally he met a young girl and the two of them hid under an abandoned rowboat for protection in a hurricane. I don’t remember the title or the author. But I would sure like to be able to read that story again. It must have been written for older children or teens.
An early chapter book, sold by Scholastic in the mid-1980s. A father and son meet a mother and daughter and they crash conventions together. The mom works in a call center (for a 1-900 number?). A llama may be involved.