Looking for a Childhood Book? Here's How.

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Whoops! Flat Stanley is looking for a book! His own book, first issued in 1964, with illustrations by Tomi Ungerer. He won't find a nice copy!  It's a very rare book.

Every day we receive emails from people searching for childhood books.  I'm sorry but we no longer research emailed book queries. Please read this page carefully and you may find some alternate ways of searching for your book yourself.
You can also post your query on the Comment section below. Since I personally moderate Disqus Comments daily, I will see any query you post and will answer if I am familiar with the book. However, there are several contributers to this page who are more knowledgeable about modern books than I am. We also highly recommend  www.Loganberrybooks.com.


Searching for a Book Online
Selling One or Two Books
Finding and Valuing an Older Book
Describing a book for your query
Followed by a Comments section, which you may use to post a query.

Searching for a Book Online:

Our Old Children's Books Search:
First, it's worth trying our own Advanced Search.  About 3/4 of our children's books, are on this site.  Although only about 500 have pictures, almost all contain plot descriptions and Keywords (tags). These can be searched using the Description and Keyword field or the simple search on the website.

We are specialist children's booksellers. There are better sources on the net for inquiring about most children's books, especially readers, series, modern, or mass market books. Please try the links below before contacting us:

Absolute Best: Loganberry Books
Loganberry Books home page.

Select "Nostalgia" from the menu.
Look through other people's queries and Solved Mysteries; post your own book query.
See this Loganberry page for children's storybooks or anthologies:
Loganberry Books Anthology Page,

It's in there somewhere: ABE Books Advanced Search
Abebooks Advanced Search.
For best results use only: Title, Author, Date Range, and Keywords. You will be able to limit your search further once you reach the results page. This is the best book search engine on the net, from a huge Canadian company originally started by booksellers.
Millions of books of all kinds from dealers all over the world, some not found in libraries.

Most of the English language books ever published: WorldCat
WorldCat.org lists entries from catalogues of libraries in English speaking countries around the world. You should limit your search at least to Format:Book, and Audience:Juvenile. You can do this on the advanced search page or once you arrive at the results, using the left hand column, as with abe. Often you can find more about the content of a title by going to an individual library holding. (Because you won't get as many duplicate titles, Worldcat works better for common titles than Abe or Amazon.)

Ask the experts: Steve Santi
For a Little Golden, Elf, or similar book, try the forum on:

Pictures are best:
Once you have narrowed down a possible title, try Amazon.com or Google.com Images for a picture. The colour option on Google is working better and better. It's a real help. I have started using Images on bing.com also, something about the quality and the layout makes IDs easier.  Amazon and Google pictures are not accurate though, so use the "Seller Supplied Pictures"  (not the Stock pictures) on Abebooks for specific editions. (Look in the left hand column to limit your search to these.)

A few words can help:
If all you can remember is a few words, try Google.com.
Put the words in quotes.
Use only one or two, essential, easily-spelled, keywords.
Try this sample Google search:   "I think I can"  train
Remember that one?

Selling One or Two Books.

Probably the easiest place for an individual to sell books like those above is on Amazon. Look up your book, click on the picture, then look in the blue box for "Have one to sell?" and click on "Sell yours here." Amazon's instructions for selling are very clear. If, and only if, Amazon has listed the book in the past, will you be able to list also.  Ebay is also very easy and inexpensive to use for a few books and it allows you more room to describe the books.

For pricing your book, it is easier and more accurate to use the Abebooks.com Advanced Search to find a price. Then double check on Amazon because prices there are sometimes higher.  Amazon's Search is really not set up for out of print books.

Condition, especially the presence of a jacket if called for,  and publication data are extremely important, but just record what you see, don't try to grade or ascertain edition and printing. The more care you put into describing your books, the more likely you are to sell them. Note: We do not purchase books online, sight unseen. Please do not offer them to us. Thank you. If you have a collection or several rare books you are interested in selling to us, especially if you live in the Northwest, please look on http://oldchildrensbooks.com/buying-and-pricing-childrens-books

Finding and Valuing an Older Book.

We are happy to assist you in finding a half-remembered book from the 1930s  or before. Our email address is on the Contact Us page. We do not run a formal Book Search and we will not order books for you, but we'll try to point you in the right direction. For a more modern book read the suggestions above or post a Comment/query on this page..

We never value a book over the net, nor do other reputable booksellers. If you have an older book which seems to have value, you might want to look at our page Buying and Selling Children's Books.

Look through the suggestions below. If the process seems too complicated, we are pleased to recommend an very experienced children's specialist bookseller who does formal book searches and keeps a want list for customers.

Jeryl Metz Woitach
dba Jeryl Metz, Books
697 West End Ave, #13A
New York, NY 10025-6921
Tel. (212) 864-3055
Email: Jmwbooks@aol.com
Website: www.abebooks.com/home/SUNNY

Describing a Book.

-Basic Information:
    The latest possible year of publication, i. e. before (date).
    Your estimate as to the range of possible publication dates.
    Picture book or children's novel
    Source: Library? School? An older family book?

- Anything at all you remember about the book:
    Phrases or refrains,
    Bits of plot.
-Illustrations: the quickest way to ID, the hardest quality to describe.
    Separate plates or in text?
    Other illustrators the pictures call to mind?

Choose your search words carefully:
Unusual words really help: wallaby works better than bear as a search word.
Names which could be spelled in various ways are hard to search; Peatie Peety Petey Peetie Peaty
Words which could be hyphenated or not also take time, especially with older books which may follow different conventions: dog house, dog-house, doghouse
Avoid abbreviations, they could be spelled out or not: Dr/Doctor. Mr./Mister Co./Company  Inc./
Avoid possessives, although sometimes it doesn't matter.

See also our Links for Collectors in the Collector's Corner.


Guidelines: This forum is monitored by the owner of this site, Old Children's Books. Only a few book sleuths are whitelisted on this forum. All other pending posts are reviewed individually and approved at least daily.

Please understand that direct contact information and/or commercial solicitations will be removed from your post.

* Post only bookID-related posts or links. No sales offers, please.
* Include no contact information in the body of your comment.
* Sign up for Disqus to be notified of responses.

Many, many thanks to all the wonderful readers who help to ID these books!  We also appreciate those who take the time to thank the contributors for researching their books.



Children's picture book

Hello. I'm searching for a children's picture book from the late 1970s early 80s. I believe it has a white cover. It is beautifully illustrated. It has an elf whose name I believe is Norton. He hides on each page and is tricky to find. It was a school library book at a public school in Canada. I'm looking for this for a childhood friend. I have tried many other search methods. Thanks in advance for any help. Cheers!

Childrens book

All I remember about this book is that it was about neighborhood and the grocery store/market was owned by a man named Mr. Elefantopolis (sp?)

Historical fiction

My husband remembers reading a book in the 1960's in grade school, which was set in perhaps the 1500s. In it there is a priest and a group of people who at some point cross a bridge. The priest gets across, but some time later it collapses while this group of people are on it and they all die. For the rest of the book the priest tries to figure out why the bridge collapsed for this particular group of people, but he was spared. He would love to figure out what that book was called. He believes he remembers reading it in school.

I think you might be

I think you might be describing 'The Bridge of San Luis Rey' by Thornton Wilder.


The book I'm looking for is about a kid that goes to a new school which is being haunted by another little boy. The boy sees the ghost in like green glowing light. I dont remember much details i just know the ghost of the boy haunted him cause he died in the school. Got locked in a room and died there, everyone thought he had ran away, vanished etc....please if you know the title or author, tell me. I've been looking for this book for ages! Thanks in advance!!

Can't Remember The Name

I'm looking for a book I read in the 70's. A child goes to live with her grandmother/aunt who runs a boarding house. 2 men and a woman live in the house as well. The girl finds the elderly people to be boring and bad tempered by day but discovers that by night they go by different names (the woman is called Miss Marsh by day but at night she is Mrs Marshmallow)and are totally opposite to their day time characters. There is also a magic tree in the back yard which blossoms with wishes and these people pick "ripe" wishes and grant them. I had thought it was called "The Wishing Tree" but haven't found it under that name. Does anyone else know this book? Thanks :-)

House like a Balloon

I am looking for a childrens book about a man who moves into a neighborhood, and redesign's his house like I believe a balloon. At first his neighbors are mad, but then he convinces them that their house is an expression of themselves, so one turns his into a ship. ect. Any idea's the name of the book?


Sounds like THE BIG ORANGE SPLOT by Daniel Pinkwater. Mr Plumbean has a nice neat house like his neighbors, but when a seagull drops a bucket of orange paint on his roof, it inspires him to create the house of his (apparently psychedlic) dreams. His neighbors are unhappy, but one by one they recreate their houses to look like their dreams. One looks like a castle, another a hot air ballon, another a ship, etc.

Odd Anteater like cartoon book

I don't remember much about this book, I would guess it was published between 1975-1995, most likely in the 80s. I remember it was a story about a man and his odd pet, a rather large, grey, anteater-like creature. It was a picture book, and I remember a specific picture of him taking this pet on a trip to the zoo. All the humans in this book had rather dark, almost demented looking eyes, and if I remember correctly, it was kind of a sad story, the basis being this odd creature. Any help?

shot in the dark

Take a look at Tomi Ungerer's THE BEAST OF MONSIEUR RACINE.

That's it!! Thank you so

That's it!! Thank you so much!!

childrens book

Looking for name and book i read to my son in the 1970s. A childrens hard cover. Story: mom asked son to clean up room and gave him 2 boxes...one marked "to save" & one marked "to throw away". The story has him thinking about each toy as he trys to put in the throw away box....but eventually he places in to save box. When his mom returns....the to save box is overflowing and he asks his mom to throw away the empty "to throw away" box! Now would love to read to grandchildren!

possible answer

It matches the description of THE BIG CLEANUP by Harvey Weiss, 1967.

mum's childhood story ducky went shopping

Looking for ducky went shopping, as bed time tale my mum had read to her when little in UK. It was about a little duck wet by his mum to buy eggs and dropped the basket (see the morale in tale). She was born in 1944, so after that date. It may have been a chapter in a bedtime book however.. HELP

childrens book from the 90's???

hi i'm trying to think of the book title of a book i always used to read, it was about a girl names megan. and everyday she had different monsters come to her house? i know one was named monty but thats all i remember :( plz help!!!!

Looking for a book about a kidnapped girl

I am looking for a book from my childhood. I can;t remember the name, But I do remember it had a blue cover. The story is about a young girl who is kidnapped by a man who believes she is his dead sistr who died in a car crash. The girl's family now lives in his house. A friend sees her being kidnapped and the kidnapper returns and runs her down with his car breaking her leg. The man keeps the girl in an abandoned barn. She later convinces him that she beilieves she is his sister and will not leave and they go to a local campground to shower. She escapes from hm and is picked up by a trucker. I dont remember the author, or publisher, or name of the book. I do believe Kidnapped was in the title but I could be wrong. I believe the book was written either in the 70's or 80's. If anyone knows a book similiar I would greatly appreciate the help.

Teenage books

I read about 40 yearas ago a 17 book set written around a group of teenage children who would investigate things set in and around Salop/Shropshire/the Welsh border. As it got near the end of the series two of the children now in their late teens maybe early twenties got engaged I cannot remember who wrote the books or what any of them were called please help

Teenage books

Would that be Trixie Beldon series?

Good Enough Gizmo (Gismo)

Read this to our son, new in 1963-1966. Hardcover childrens book. About a baby elephant that spun his big ears or he had a topnotch that spun so he could fly.

Looking for "Big World & The Little House" 1956

I am looking for a book from 1956 titled "Big World & The Little House" illustrated by Marc Simont

The Big World and the Little

The Big World and the Little House by Ruth Krauss illustrated by Marc Simont. There are three on abebooks.com, none in particularly nice condition, but the ones on Amazon are in worse condition and cost much more. I'm surprised to find that we don't have it. Suzanne

A big world or it's one o'clock somewhere

My husband read this book as a child in the 1960's. It was about a little boy in a house on the big world and maybe about a clock on the mantle.

ive been looking for this

ive been looking for this book for over 20 years, i cant remeber much only that i bought in used in england in the 80s and it contains several short stories and i think some verses....one story about a little girl who finds a fairy crying, and the fairy says she wants to cook but has no stove/cooker and the little girl lets her use hers. another about a toy shop where the toys come alive at night and theres a naughty doll, glue falls on her head at the end....this book could be from the 70s or could be much older im not sure. thankyou :)

possible answer

Your post made me think of Enid Blyton's stories, so I did some searching and found that ENID BLYTON'S STORIES FOR BEDTIME contains the stories "The Little Toy Stove" and "Connie's Curious Candle". The Enid Blyton Society website is very helpful. Take a look here - it shows the table of contents and different covers http://www.enidblytonsociety.co.uk/book-details.php?id=823&title=Enid+Bl...

20+ years looking for this book

The book im looking for was a book of childrens stories. One story in the book was about a toy shoy where all the toys come to life at night, one of the dolls is naughty...another is about a fairy that wants to cook but her stove cooker is too small and a little girl helps her...theres one story about a candle that melts because hes sad...i honestly cant remember much. I dont know if the book is american or british but i bought it in england in the 80s and it was used and seemed old then so it may date further back.

House with a secret toy room

Book about a house that has a secret toy room. The family moves into the house and finds clues that are rhymes. The clues lead them from one to the next - i remeber one was in an old tree in the front yard and the other had something to do with leaves (of a table, not of a tree)... The children notice that the house has one more window on the exterior than the interior. I think it's 100 vs 99. At the end, an earthquake reveals the hidden room full of toys. I think the cover was blue and brown with yellow. I read it in the late 80's.


This is GO TO THE ROOM OF THE EYES by Betty K. Irwin.

looking for 2 books

Desperatly looking for a book Cricket's Storm by Joy Cowley and The Great Sandwich Swap by Pat Edwards

Australian books.

There is a book by Pat Edwards called The Sandwich, part of a Longman's reading program. I wonder if your book was the trade version of this. According to WorldCat, Cricket's Storm was published by Scholastic in 2000 and Cricket Storm in 2004, although this may be a typo. Interesting that these are so rare.

Looking for a children's book believed its called the Long Summe

I think it was published in late 1970"s. The cover showed a girl on her bike (drawn). All the kids ride their bikes everywhere. Her and her friends were trying to solve some mystery that they had discovered. I think she stepped on a bottle cap and bloodied her foot. I don't remember much of it, but it just keeps lingering in my mind. I'd like to find it, and read it again. Based on the this website: the lesson is, the books we really liked, we should keep. It doesn't matter what you read, you are never to old for any book. Even early childhood books leave their marks on us. Thanks for anyone's help. Appreciate it.

possible answer

Not 100% sure, but definitely worth a look. This book was republished, so the newer cover will not match the memory, but the older cover has 2 girls w/ a bicycle (one girl is seated on the ground so she's not as obvious). It's THE LONG SECRET by Louise Fitzhugh.

The miracle of the loaves and the fishes

I had a copy of this story when I was little. 1950 to 1970. It had beautiful illustrations like a painting. Very realistic. Most of the ones I've seen so far the illustrations look cartoon-y. It may have been a little golden book or Tell A Tale book. Can anyone help me? It's not the Enid Blyton one published in 1948 either. Thanks!

Mint Chocolate Chip

Mint Chocolate Chip. That is the main thing I remember from a favorite children's book I had. I had it in the mid to late 70's, but it may have been written before then. It was an illustrated, hardback book, with a few stories, and I remember it involving swirling visual's of mint chocolate chip ice cream.


Possible answer: Could it be... "The Secret Language" (1960) by Ursula Nordstrom ?
"When Ann leaves, Martha and Victoria become roommates, go to the
Halloween party as ice cream cones...
".. They dress as matching chocolate chip mint ice cream cones for a
Halloween costume party. "
  -- Truman

Thanks for the tip, but that

Thanks for the tip, but that does not sound like the one. This one had two or three stories. And I remember a wave of mint chocolate chip ice cream, a monster, and I think a king and princess. I know its not much to go on, faulty childhood memories.

Book Title and availability

About 40 years ago we used to read a book to our son and he adored it. I cannot recall the title but it started "the trees in the wood were coming down and houses were going up. Can anyone identify?

Teen book

I am looking for a book that I read in the mid 70's it was about a 13 yr. old girl who along with a friend held a seance to answer some unanswered questions hey had, the one girl takes her mothers pearl earrings as her symbol

1990s children's book

I cannot remember the name or author of this book. I remember reading it over and over as a child though. In the book, there is a red curly haired girl. She has friends over, I guess there are 5 or 6 kids in the story. I remember her making heart shaped cookies. I also remember all the kids dressing up. They also dress up the pet dog. I remember the girl getting a pink hat box and getting a hat to put on the dog. The last page of th book is a picture of all the kids and the dog all dressed up. I think they were all holding their heart shaped cookies, but I could be wrong about that part. I have searched everywhere for the title of this book and cannot find anything.

Children's book

I am looking for a book about a little girl named Gertrude who was a late baby in the family. She is a surprise and trial to her older parents. Probably set in late 1800's or early 1900's.
I remember one scene where she rides the banister down to fall into her father and another where she rides on a streetcar and after accepting a marshmellow from a stranger she remembers that she should not take candy from strangers and has the most horrible time holding the marshmellow in her mouth waiting until she can politely spit it out
Thank you;
Kathy Moats

Red hardcover childrens book 1950's with short stories

All I remember is one story in the book about a little girl who was very sick, and she was lying in her bed with her arms propped up on pillows so she could lift her hands up in prayer. The picture from that story has stayed with me my entire life. Anyone remember this book?

a children's library book from the 80's w/ title "best friends"

i remember reading a book when i was about in the 5th grade. about two preschool-kindergarten girls who were classmates and best friends. when a disputes arises between the two girls the teacher settles it and they continue to be best friends.
this book was a picture book. and was in the library about in the early to mid 1980's.it had a title with "Best Friends" in it i think.
if anyone else can remember a children's book from the 1980's with best friends in the title let me know.thanks!!!!!!!

Child/young adult fiction

I read this between 1961-1970. It was about a boy stowaway to France (I think). There may have been storks mentioned in the story.

1950 childrens book

The book had the mother and daughter making a birthday cake for dad. All i can remember is the cake had the most beautiful blue frosting. The dad could be someone in uniform.

Aaron, houseboat, gypsies, currant buns

I remember a character named Aaron. I think there were gypsies and a houseboat in the story and someone eating currant buns. If anybody remembers this childhood book that I read back in the 1960's, please tell me the author and title. Thanks!

This might be it

Hi, I'm not sure if this is the book but it's called Fortune's Journey by Bruce Coville. There was a character named Aaron and I think they were gypsies but I don't remember a house boat, they were a traveling act I think. I thought I
d give it a shot.

We are looking for the name

We are looking for the name of a series of small books about 8 inches by 4 inches about a family of mice. any help please

Are the mice English?

If so, then possibly you are recalling the Brambly Hedge books by Jill Barkham


Picture book about monkeys on a train

When I was in elementary school (1983-1987), I remember asking my parents to read me this particular picture book about monkeys on a train constantly. I believe I must have started around 83-84 when I would have been too young to read to myself.

All I can remember about the book was that it was fairly short (as most children's picture books are), funny or at least upbeat, had hand drawn pictures and it was about monkeys on a train (playing on a train I think).

I got the book from my school's library (Victory Public School in Guelph, Ontario, Canada). I have no idea how it was bound. There's a chance it could have been from that company that sold books to kids through a magazine/leaflet (called Arc En Ciel in French) every year in schools.

It wasn't Summer of the Monkeys, I know that for sure.

Old Firebird Paperback??

This was a paperback collection titled something like "The Firebird and other stories" with an arab influence? It combined where the firebird/phoenix stole the golden pear. Another unique feature was the daughter put beans on the stove to make it sound like a man and woman talking...

The cover was old, off white and green.

Some of the other stories were the Boy with the Golden Hair (leans into the well and his hair turns to gold before he drinks, covers it with a sheepskin hood), the talking horse who changes color and in the end has the boy cut his head off (turns out he was a prince).

Any help at all would mean the world to me! I've been looking for this book for 15 years.

Thanks so much!

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