Tag Archives: House

366E: Girl Trapped in Cistern

Sometime in the period 1984-1988, when I was a child, my summer reading subscription (Weekly Reader?) sent me a novel about a girl who lives alone with her mother in a country house. One hot summer day she escapes her chores in the cellar where there is an old-fashioned cistern (unlidded concrete cylinder built into the floor). She climbs it to lie on the rim, but then falls in and remains trapped for hours because her yelling is unheard by her mother vacuuming two floors above. That’s all I remember!

365D: Castle on a Hill

As a small child in the early 2000s I compulsively read a picture book in the school library but for years have been unable to track it down.

It followed the history of a single hilltop in I believe England. Every page would open to a new period of history with a new drawing, as new groups of people would use the hilltop for its advantageous position.

The first were Celts, who built a stockade around the hill along with dirt walls.

Then a Roman fort with intricate buildings and brickwork.

Eventually there was a Manor House with a rudimentary wall.

And finally a huge castle with lots of towers and a moat.

There were other examples I don’t remember but these are what have stuck with me. Each page includes people in the various forts living, working, and doing activities. Parts of roofs and walls were cut out in the drawing so you could see inside.

And there was even a “Where’s Waldo” type game. In each variation of the hill were a pair of “lovers” (for lack of a better word) who were hidden among the people and activities and you had to seek them out.

Around the drawing was information about the time period, the purpose of why they built something (e.g. a drawbridge), and interesting facts like stuff about defending a medieval castle from attack.

I know this sounds like a lot of depth, but I promise this was a children’s picture book. Somewhere between the ages of 5 and 10 I was obsessed with it. Please help!

363O: A picture book about a house with too many books

I am searching for a picture book I really loved as a child, but neither my mother nor I remember the title. It was published, we think, around 1996 (it was given to me as a gift around then). It was about a house with so many books, they piled up to the ceiling, they used books as furniture, and so on. It is a little like the 1980s book TOO MANY BOOKS, but with a very different aesthetic. More pastel or oil painting style art, full color full page paintings, no white space. There were cats and, we think, two ladies (maybe librarians?) who live in the house. I remember being enchanted and a little creeped out, in terms of vibe. We think it was either 8×8″ or 8×10″. We hope you can find it, because we want to give it to a friend who is expecting a baby! 

362L: Sister Turns Out to be Another Personality

I’m looking for a YA book from the late 80’s or early 90’s. It’s about a group of school students that go to an old house. The main character is a girl that has a sister. It’s revealed later that the sister is actually another personality.  I think there was a picture of a girl looking in the mirror on the cover. I think some bad things happen to the other students, but I don’t remember specifics.

362F: Daughter Schemes for Piano from Estate (Solved!)

I am looking for a book that my mother-in-law was reading in the late 60s early 70s. It is a book based in San Francisco.
From what she remembers it is a story about a mother or a family member like a dad who dies. The daughters need to split up the estate.
They start in her house on the top floor.They are assigned an order that they must keep the entire time. One of the daughters desperately wants the piano which is on the bottom floor. Each of them takes a turn. The daughter who wants the piano is constantly negotiating with the other two sisters. She’s making side deals with them by telling them that she’ll get this item but she’ll trade it for the piano.
My mother-in-law never read the end of the book. She went to a wedding and she left the book in the hotel. So she never found out what happened at the end and if the daughter was successful in getting the piano.

360L: Abandoned Lake House

The book I vaguely remember had something to do with a child or maybe siblings going to spend the summer with an elderly aunt (I think) who was living on a lake where most of the houses were abandoned. It had once been a vibrant summer community ca. 1900 (I think), but was now mostly deserted sans aunt’s household. There may or may not have been a mystery component to it. I think I read it around 4th grade maybe ca. 1977?

358M: Children’s book on a boy and too many cats

I’m hoping you can help us find this book we read to my daughters when they were young in the late 1990s, early 2000s:
The book is either a picture book or a beginning readers book about a boy who loses his cat, and decides to put “wanted” posters up around his neighborhood. But he forgets to put a picture of his cat on the poster, and neighbors bring all sorts of cats of every variety to his house and his home fills up with cats. There are lovely illustrations of the different kinds of cats. We can’t remember the author, illustrator, or the title, so this might be a challenge for you.

356Q: The House Made of Plants Blends Inside with Outside

Looking for picture book about a house that was made of plants. The outside world merges surrealy with the inside room (resembles art of Jacek Yerka but it's not him). Book was mostly visual and the color of the art was very green. The story takes place at night. There is an old man with white hair in the house. Likely an older book from the 60s or 70s, or at least has the 60s/70s hippie/spiritual vibe. If you find this with just this info you are unto a god, thank you.