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
https://www.worldcat.org/advancedsearch 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.) If you have access to a university reference library, you can access a more WorldCat reliable search.

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 an image. 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 with an ISBN 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 Abebooks Advanced Search https://www.abebooks.com/servlet/SearchEntry 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 /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: https://www.abebooks.com/jeryl-metz%2C-books-new-york-ny/6872/sf

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: US Pacific Standard Time.

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.



possible answer for children's bk involving summoning monsters

It may be A SPECIAL TRICK by Mercer Mayer. See http://www.vintagechildrensbooksmykidloves.com/2009/04/special-trick.html
for illustrations and details about plot.

Yes, that's it!

Yes, that's it!

Childrens book from the 70's

I'm looking for the name of a book that I had when I was about 4 yrs old (1973). I remember it being hard cover with maybe a blue cover. It was about a family of mice that lived in a wall of a large house and it was Christmas Eve. The mice children were waiting for Santa Mouse while the human children were waiting for their Santa to arrive. (or something like that). I remember that the pictures in the book were really cool!

Was it called "Santa Mouse"?

Was it called "Santa Mouse"? I remember that one from my childhood. It's at

Old thin hardcover Book

I remember the title as YOU ARE YOUR BIRTHDAY...

it has one page per date and month with a few paragraphs for each day and month... ppg one about your early years, ppg 2 about your middle life and ppg 3 about your later years. It was think and reddish brown hard cover.... I think written in the 1950s or earlier.....

Childrens Picture Book about Coloring his world


I have been looking for ages for the title of a book I read about 30 years ago. The story started out in black and white, and slowly, the boy added additional colors to his world. It was a story about how different elements of life (color) make the world an interesting and better place. I know it isn't The Giver as it was a very colorfully illustrated book. I would be so grateful if someone knew the title!

Many thanks,


Musical childrens lullaby book from the 90's

Hello, I have been trying desperately to find a book a had as a child. I remember it was one of those books that had the buttons down the right side and each one played the music to a different lullaby/nursery rhyme. I believe the cover had two owls on it and I remember all of the illustrations were animals and honestly I could describe some of them in detail. I know most of the songs in it as well- rock a bye baby, good night ladies, cat and the fiddle, bye baby bunting, sleep baby sleep, etc.. for the life of me I can't find this book or even the name of it. Any help is appreciated

book about boy with horrible brother

I read it in the 80s, though I don't know when it was actually published. It was a funny story about a boy whose brother kept making his life miserable. There was a scene where his brother dumped a large number of spiders into his bed. There was another scene where the boy was admiring his new underwear while looking in the mirror, and his brother was spying on him while he was doing it, perhaps even took a picture. The funniest book of my childhood, but I can't remember the name.

more info? re: "book about boy with horrible brother"

Was the book a picture book or a chapter book? Was the horrible brother younger or older. Judy Blume's chapter books about Peter and his younger brother Fudge were very funny, but I don't recall those specif incidents (TALES OF A FOURTH GRADE NOTHING; SUPERFUDGE).
If this isn't it, please post additional info.

I remember reading a book I

I remember reading a book I checked out from my elementary school library called Dump the Chump or Operation Dump the Chump. I don't remember much about it except that it was a boy trying to come up with a plan to get rid of his younger brother. Something like that. Btw I read it in the 90s so maybe it's your book?

answer to "I remember reading a book I"

Sounds like OPERATION: DUMP THE CHUMP by Barbara Park.

Another book I am trying to

Another book I am trying to find is a teenage book I read at school, it was about a class room experiment that got went wrong and some of the pupils became segregated and sort of developed a nazi attitude.

The book is called The Wave

The book is called The Wave by Morton Rhue or Todd Strasser. It is still available.

Blue Eyes/Brown Eyes experiment

I don't know the name of the book, but there were several variations on this as a classroom experiment, or curriculum. Here's a page with information and links:


Please help me, I am looking for a book I used to have when I was younger, it was a poetry book but I can only remember the cover, it was orange with small black figures on it of witches on broomsticks and cats, I can remember it had the poem the highwayman in it but that is all.

The Fire Brigade

I read this picture book about 10 years ago. It was about a Rabbit and a Squirrel (I've forgotten their names, but I think that they alliterated, like Ronald Rabbit and Sammy Squirrel or something like that). Anyway, they realize that their forest/woodland didn't have a fire brigade. So they decide to build one, and they ask for donations from all the woodland creatures. Everyone in the forest decides to help out, except for one miser who's also the richest creature in the forest. (One of the illustrations I loved the most was one where all the creatures except the miser were queueing up to donate to the cause). So they build the fire brigade and colour it red, and it looks all nice. Then the miser's house catches on fire because he was smoking and forgot to put it out or something like that. The fire brigade comes and saves his house and he's grateful and decides to contribute to their cause after all.

I loved this book especially for it's lovely drawings, and I used to stare and them and try to redraw them. Unfortunately, I lost it when we moved a long time ago. I've tried looking for it, but it's stayed elusive. It would be great if you could help me out. =)

Humorous childrens story about a big sandwich

I used to read this book to kndg. kids in the early 90's....they loved it! a man is really hungry and he or his wife build a huge sandwich...each page gets items added and it repeats every item layer by layer. I would love to find it to read to my grandbabies! Thanks!

a book about a little horse or pony called brownie

Hi there..Am looking for a book from aprox 20 years agowith i think a white outer cover about a pony called brownie..he goes to the school playground to fetch the litte boy and girl because their dad has fallen into a lake or pond or something..he gpes to fetch them..Would be very grateful for your help...I think the book may have contained other storys to..Many Thanks

70's-80's children's novel

The book I'm looking for was a book my teacher read aloud to our class in 6th grade which was aroun 1984-1985. It told by a girl who was in 5th or 6th grade and was overweight. She was witty and humorous and wanted to just fit in. Sorry, that' all I can recall. I thought it was possibly by Judy Blume, but not sure. It was a paperback and I think there was a picture of a girl on the cover who was the main, overweight character. It also might have been one of the books that has an apple on it.


Perhaps this is Blubber, by Judy Blume. Blubber was told by a classmate of the overweight girl, who went along with the teasing because she wanted to fit in. This book has been reissued a couple of times, but if you go to the Amazon listing you can see a picture of the older Scholastic paperback with the cover you described. Many of the comments on Amazon come from modern children who have suffered or observed teasing and bullying, and these are worth reading in themselves. The children don't see the book as dated.

A boy has an adventure beginning in his bedroom

I'm looking for a book. The details are very vague because I haven't seen it since I was very young. A young boy is on his bed, possibly jumping on his bed, putting on a "space helmet," which he either imagines or uses a bowl. At some point something makes the hair on his neck stand up, and I want to say he's descending a staircase. He encounters a bat (possibly at the library), and there's a discussion about the bat getting a nosebleed from hanging upside down. I seem to remember the illustrations being black and white and being reminiscent of Maurice Sendak. The book could have been published anytime up until the late 1980s. It's possible that these are memories of multiple books that I've condensed in my memory, but I doubt it. Any information would be appreciated.

posssible answer A boy has an adventure beginning in his bedroom

Sounds like it could be A GHOST NAMED FRED by Nathaniel Benchley. A boy named George is pretending to have space adventures. He gets caught in the rain and takes shelter in an abandonned house. A ghost named Fred is haunting the house to protect hhis gold coins, but he has forgotten where he hid them. I'm pretty sure he has a bat for company and that's where that line comes in. It is an easy reader book, not scary.

Children's book

I'm trying to find the name of a book that I loved as a child. The name has something to do with a star. In the book about a little girl her mum had a baby on her birthday but then the baby died. I remember the babies name was something like Tanya. Please help!!

Childhood memory

The book I am trying to find I read as child, probably 59 years ago. It was an old, used book - a collection of stories which often addressed the reader as...dear reader. I believe the stories were intended to teach a lesson. The only story I remember from it was about a boy who had a kitten that he adored. His father threatened to give it away to a family of cruel boys if the boy didn't take care of it properly. One day the boy had forgotten to care for the kitten and he was so terrified that the kitten would live a life of abuse with the family of boys, that he took the kitten to the shore and drowned it, in order to spare it a terrible existence. When the father learned what had happened he was devastated , as he had never really meant to give the kitten away. A terribly sad story, first story I read that made me cry.
Any ideas?

a book of poems

Can anyone help me? My girlfriend was born in 1967 and her father used to read her a poem every night from a book of poems. Sorry to say all she remembers is it was a green book. Her dad sadly passed away when she was 12 years old and her mother doesn't recall either.

As a child my mother used to

As a child my mother used to read to me out of a green book of poems. So I figured I would share in case its the same book. It was called 101 Famous Poems. The poem read to me was called The Duel about a gingham dog and a calico cat.

Hans Christian Andersen , help!

I know this is a shot in the dark but I'm looking for a very specific book.
It's a collection of Hans Christian Andersen fairy tales. From the 50s/60s
The book was published by Whitman, it's either light blue/green and the whole books outside is an underwater setting. There is a mermaid on it, I've had noooo luck! All I keep finding is the dark blue version with a small mermaid. The bottom of the book has seaweed stemming upwards ! Please help

Children's Book

I read a book as a child that must have been written in the 60s or 70s, about an English boy and an African one.
They used to communicate over a wall? The African boy taught him some words in Swahili. I am not sure but the English boy may have had a physical disability? I would really like to find out the title and the book again. Thanks

little girl's busy saturday/weekend book

all i can remember is a little girl whose name was Angie I believe and the book tells the story about her getting up on saturday morning and on each page every thing in all the rooms in the house is labeled (ie. bed, lamp, dresser). She is then with her parents out running errands and goes into a hardware store and a clothing store. It had a store front on the cover like a brick store front but thats all I can remember and I know it had to be from the late 80's since I was born in 86 and I had it from when I was a baby on up. can not find anything like this on amazon or ebay and really wished i could find a copy of it before my baby is born.

also another book I had had a dark hard cover and inside all I can remember was one single saying "ice cream smudges from desert"...I cant remember anything else about the book other then it was made in the early 90's since I got it as a gift around age 6 or 7. trying to find these books for my future children!

Children's book pre-1980s, mother and daughter move to Canada

I am trying to locate a book I read back in 5th grade, will be older than 1985...This is a hardcover book, and a mother and daughter have fallen from the graces (have disgraced) the royal court in France, maybe between 1750-1800. They are being sent away to New World, either Canada (or Louisiana). Mother and daughter may be seamstresses and make their own clothes. Book may be written late 1950s- early 1960s, not sure about date.

Help! Book about a dragon? Part 2

Revised! I THINK the book may have been about an artist who could not draw realistic dragons? He couldn't draw dragons well and then he got a dragon to draw from. He did have a dog but I can't remember if the dog turned into the dragon or maybe he traded it for the dragon, though I strongly suspect the former.

Many thanks!

Help! Book about a dragon?

I cannot remember this book, but I think it was about a man (painter/artist) who had a dog he drew but nobody bought them. Then one day his dog got turned into a dragon that ate lots of coal in bags and the artist painted so many new things that people bought from him. Paintings and sketches of the dragon in so many different poses, breathing fire, flying, etc. Anyone know what this book is?

Drango Dragon! I saw your

Drango Dragon!

I saw your post while trying to find the answer myself. Mum solved the riddle in the end :)

cannot find this book!

I had this book in the 90's about a little girl who wanted to care for the planet. She got upset when people were carving the trees and leaving rubbish in the lakes. She happened to be able to talk to nature and she made all the birds fly away and the grass to stop growing and the lakes to dry out. She wanted to to prove how important nature was and how people had to look after it. Eventually, everyone realised and started to change their behaviour.

It was such a charming book I want to read and see it again because I feel like I have dreamt it! It had lovely crayon type drawings and I remember the little girls name started with a Z and she had red hair. It's all I remember and it's so frustrating!

trying to find kid's book from late 70s?

All I can remember was a boy who was in the forest at night and he witnessed ogres and possibly other types of monsters dancing or having a party? I believe that they captured him. The artwork was big, bold and memorable!

Thank you!

Trying to find kid's book fro 1970s

I think the book you're looking for is called Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak. Good luck.

Are you thinking of 'Where

Are you thinking of 'Where the Wild things are'? Maurice Sendak....It's such a famous book so I'm sure you must know it, so it's probably another book you're looking for, but there is a forest, a small boy, ogre types, and very bold illustrations!

where the wild things are?

where the wild things are?

Where the Wild Things Are?

You don't suppose this was Where the Wild Things Are? Maurice Sendak? Take a look at the pictures on Google Images. They are certainly memorable! Suzanne

Thank you to the children's librarian.

Dear Children's Librarian, Thank you so much for your ID's. I should have recognized quite a few! By now there are about 1000 entries on this page and I can't do much more than screen out the false comments. When you answer a query, would you be kind enough to include a reference to the book title or subject in your Subject line? I like to read your ID's but my search works only on all 1000 comments, lots of scrolling and moving to next page.

Note: An expert children's librarian can ID faster than any computer search! Try your public library, if you are fortunate enough to have a library with a strong children's program.

Thank you to the children's librarian

Oops! I thought since each query had a reply button that it would refer to the stumper. I will keep that in mind in the future. Thanks for posting other people's stumpers. Memory can be such a funny thing, especially things we remember as a child. One of my childhood stumpers was JENNY THE HALLOWEEN SPY. You'd think I'd have remembered it since my family called me Jenny!

Lodgers who tell stories to little girl

The book I'm trying to locate was one I borrowed from the library (England) in the late 50's/early 60's, and I think it wasn't very new then. A little girl goes to stay/live in her aunt's boarding house. She visits all the lodgers one by one, and they tell her stories. One lodger is an old sailor. Another is a woman who tells a story about a family necklace that breaks & a bead is lost each time. Another lodger makes the girl ginger tea when she has a cold. Another lodger used to run a shop.
Thank you for reading this, & I hope someone can help me.

Dentist story?

My grandma had a storybook that had a whole bunch of short stories (maybe Richard scarry?) in it there was a story, I thought it was called Upstairs, Downstairs Dentist. Google search = no luck. Anybody remember a story about two dentists, one up and one down, and one would give the kids candy and one wouldn't? Would love to pass this down to my son! Thanks! I remember my grandmas book was hardcover, and I think the cover was blue.

Emma and the Clam Apartments

Hi! I have been looking for this book for years. It was such an odd story it's stuck with me for 30 years.

Emma/Emily??? and the Clam Apartments I think is the title.

It had a blue cloth or hard back cover. I believe it was written in the late 1800's early 1950's or that was the time it was based in. I remember it has ink drawings in it no color just black.
It's about 2 sisters who leave their family house by train, because the older sister is going to be a companion for other family. They move it into an Boarding house that they are serve clams for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I think the son of the family the older sister works for falls in love with her and ask her to marry him and Emma/Emily is so happy because she is very tired of eating clams all the time.

Possibly short story - children killed if they become too clever

Hi all, I am trying to trace a story I read as a child, I was about 7 so it would be early 80s. A child was brought up in a kind of dystopian world, his parents refused to answer any of his questions, i.e. "why is the sky blue", he later finds that the reason for this is that all children sit an intelligence test at a certain age and if they are too clever, they are killed.

Happy stuff, eh?!

Perhaps "Examination Day" by

Perhaps "Examination Day" by Henry Slesar? It was also turned into a Twilight Zone episode. That's definitely a story that sticks with you...


I'm looking for a book about a lazy mouse that was always sleeping late and being late to school One day he the mouse got lost going to school and ended up at a pond with a frog. He becames friends with the frog, but soon started missing his family, and went home. He started getting up early and going to school on time.

Walter the Lazy Mouse

Walter the Lazy Mouse by Marjorie Flack (who wrote the Angus books). It was reissued in paperback fairly recently with new and different illustrations by Cindy Szekeres.

children's book

I am searching for a book my mother had as a child the title is:
'The Little Wee Cupid', given to her in 1923

Story is about a wee cupid set to guard the Faerie treasue of Magical Stardust. He fell asleep and the Faerie treasure was stolen by "the Old Pedlar flying down the sky. He sat squeezed in his basket .....and sixty stinging gnats drew him swiftly along. Find the Old Pedlar, little wee man, and the treasure is yours!"

How to catch a monster??? Help

Help me find the title of this children's book about a boy building a cage/trap for a monster.

I'm trying to find an illustrated children's book that I enjoyed in the early '80s. I don't know if it was published in the US, or only in Canada.

It's about a young boy who sets out into the woods to catch a monster (or dragon?). His friend, or brother, tags along. They start by building a small wooden cage (trap?) for the monster, but keep adding larger and larger extensions onto it as they discuss the probable size of the monster's legs, neck, wings, horns, etc. The resulting wooden cage is enormous – the size of a house. In the end, however, they only catch a rabbit.

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