Thursday, June 19, 2008

Peter Collects Children's Books

The other night I stumbled across a blog called Collecting Children's Books, and knew I had found a place where I would be spending a bunch of time. Right off the bat, I saw that its writer, Peter, had written about Sylvia Louise Engdahl, one of my favorite young adult science fiction writers.

And tonight I found his post about all of M.E. Kerr's books, from the classic Dinky Hocker Shoots Smack to her most recent titles (which I have not read). And he even mentioned her writings under other names, which I had just learned about recently. I haven't read much of her more recent work, but I am a big fan of the early stuff. So I guess I should get to it and read everything else!

Peter has also written about his affection for ex-library titles, although he doesn't go as far as I would in actually preferring them in most ways. I know I am not a collector's collector... I don't mind the stickers and rubber stamp markings. I enjoy thinking of the schools, libraries and even churches where some of my books have come from, and the kids who read the books. And the books all have heavy-duty bindings, so they won't fall apart.

It looks like Peter started his blog in December 2007, just after I started this one. When I first thought about starting a blog, I was planning to call it Book By Its Cover, and I intended to focus on my obsession with young adult fiction, reminiscing about books I loved, and particularly spotlighting illustrators and cover art that I think is under-recognized. I still plan to do that a bit, but reading Peter's blog makes me realize how little I know!

Peter has visited the Kerlan Collection at the University of Minnesota, and reminds me that I should take more advantage of the fact that I live about five miles away from it (not just to see the recent Ellen Raskin acquisitions that I mentioned recently).

Peter's blog is obviously being read by people in the children's book industry, since I've seen comments on his posts from Newbery-winning authors. I can see why -- I feel an urge to comment on at least half of his posts myself. It's like finding someone who's read all the books you read at an impressionable age, and at last you have someone to talk to about it!

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