Author Archives: Lorraine Angus

360D: Historic fiction about a special stone that appears to many different characters in many different centuries (Solved!)

The book I am trying to recall is a novel, historic fiction, about a special stone that appears to many different characters in many different centuries. Each character being from a different era such as ancient Egypt (or was it Rome), southern plantation US … Mostly strong female protagonists who overcome some hurdle or calamity with possession or help of the stone. Not really a magic stone that I recall; no fantasy element to the story -that I recall. But I could be wrong on that point.

354H: Design Your Room

I am trying anyone and anything to find a book (duh) I remember fondly from my childhood (the mid-to-late ’90s). I haven’t had any luck so far, and I have turned to reddit, unfortunately also with no luck.
If I remember correctly:
The book was called Design Your Room.
It was a thin book, with either a silvery cover or perhaps a collage of cool-looling rooms (or possibly even both!).
It was written in English, and I always checked it out from a Bookmobile that would visit my elementary school in the Bay Area (in CA.)
I seem to recall the pages being colorful and fun, and there were different themes for your rooms, depending on what kind of aesthetic you liked (I remember a metallic one, also a more girly one, and maybe a brightly colored one as well).
I have not been able to find anything on google, for all I know this book no longer exists or looks entirely different and unrecognizable now.
Please please please, help me find it.

352N: Little Sister Tidier Than Big Sister Thought She’d Be

This is a small (I think it was green with ivy on the cover) children’s book about a little girl who is not allowed in her sister’s room without permission for fear she will make a mess. She gets in one day and does make a mess while playing, but then cleans it up.  If I remember correctly, her sister is angry when she realizes her little sister went in without permission but then forgives her when she sees how tidy her room was left.

350N: Illustrated children’s book featuring a young boy, alligator/crocodile, and (possibly a second book) other wild animals

It’s possible I’m confounding two children’s books. I remember reading this/these book(s) as a child in the 1980s. Book(s) featured a young boy who has trouble falling asleep. He wakes up or is still awake late at night, fearful of wild animals coming into his house. He is not believed by his parents. After dark he encounters wild animals, including a lion or tiger coming down the stairs of his home. He is afraid but is not harmed. I also remember (possibly from the same book or perhaps from another book) that the boy is at school, daydreaming. He looks out the classroom window and is scolded by the teacher. He sees an alligator/crocodile, who is beckoning him to go on an adventure to return the alligator/crocodile to his home. The boy travels with the alligator/crocodile through water. The alligator/crocodile says goodbye, offering the boy his tooth as a parting gift. The alligator/crocodile has a single tear on his cheek as he says goodbye. The book(s) have a dreamy, whimsical feel and I remember being frightened of the wild animals and enjoying the illustrations.

349S: Picture Book about Spoiled Rotten Princess Who Lives With the Gypsies (Solved!)

Here are all the details I can remember:
It was a picture book, but one with medium to a lot of words. I read it between 1990-1992, and I think it might have been a new copy, but I have no idea when the copyright was. I remember really loving the pictures!
It was a story about a little princess who is so loved by her father, but she is spoiled rotten and for her birthday he hires some gypsies to perform for her. She throws a fit over something and then, after she’s supposed to be in bed, she overhears him say that he wishes she would be a sweet girl (possibly like one of the gypsy girls?) or she will not be fit to run the kingdom.  
She either runs away or is taken by the gypsies, and they live a life of hard work and expect her to do it too. After only a little while, she fits right in and her skin turns brown from being out in the sun, and she almost forgets about her former life. 
The gypsies perform for lots of people, and they teach her to perform too. One day they go to a castle that seems familiar, but it isn’t until she sees her father that she remembers her previous home. She runs to his arms and he commends her for learning to be good. 
Anyway, that’s about all I can remember. I hope you can help!

349P: Forest Girl Falls in Love with City Boy

I read this as a young adult (I was born in 1976). It was a beautiful novel about a girl who grew up in the forest with little / no interaction with the outside world. I remember she had a vivid imagination and maybe had a magical lake or bog she would visit. She meets someone from the “city” and they fall in love. I seem to remember he gave her gloves and she didn’t know what gloves were. I now have teenage daughters and would love to share this novel with them.
I’ve done a lot of searching with the words girl, lost, forest, tree but can’t seem to figure it out.

349H: 60s or 70s Black and White Silhouette Book

I’m trying to find a book for a friend and wanted to see if you might be able to offer any advice. My friend’s late father was a photographer and had a black and white nude silhouettes book published back in the 60s or 70s. Unfortunately, my friend’s copy was lost many years ago and never found. I don’t have the title, but it would have been published under Bill Coco or Francis V. Coco. Any advice on how I might be able to try and find it? All suggestions are welcome! I’d love to try and make my friend’s holiday by finding this! I hope you can help. 


340K: Separates

Looking for a book from about 1960 about a young teen girl. Her mom makes all her dresses, but she wants to babysit for extra money so she can buy “separates.” She babysits children who come down with diphtheria and she must work hard to save them while in quarantine. Good luck!

340G: 1970s book, set in California, the story of a man and his wife, their relationship, divorce, his subsequent wife, Orange Julius

I read this book in the late 1980s, and really enjoyed it, despite finding his wife slightly infuriating.
The story started in the 1960s, and went through to the 1970s. On his first date at a diner with his (red headed? maybe?) girlfriend whom he marries, she tells him the salt and pepper shakers like him and she likes him. Their meeting when they decide to divorce is also in a diner, where she tells him that the salt and pepper shakers love him and he’s breaking their hearts. He leaves her for another woman, whom he marries.
I think that most of the story takes place in California, and during the summer they drink Orange Julius. He may have met his wife at uni.
It’s a quite funny novel, as I recall, and I really enjoyed it. I just cannot find it, even with all my powers of Googlefu.
I have no idea of the name, or when it was written, though I suspect it’s late 1970s or early 1980s, and I think it’s written by a man. The novel is first person from the man’s POV.
If you can find it for me, I will be eternally grateful. I know it isn’t much to go on.