A Book of Fairy Tales

I was searching around online for pages from a vintage book of children’s nursery rhymes recently. I have one page, with an illustration for Three Billy Goats Gruff, from The Mother Goose Book published in 1924 by Frederick Warne & Co. I was hoping to find another page to pair with it. Unfortunately, this book (or pages from it) are very hard to find. The only ones I could find were 3 pages in an Etsy shop, and they weren’t illustrations I wanted. It’s too bad I missed out on The Queen of Hearts and Sing a Song for Sixpence.


While searching, though, I think I stumbled across something better. I found a listing for Dean’s Mother Goose Book of Rhymes, illustrated by Janet and Anne Grahame Johnstone. When I saw the cover, I had such a strong emotional reaction — I had owned this book as a child and forgotten all about it. Seeing it again, I immediately started remembering the illustrations in the book. They were marvelous, and I remembered them vividly. I don’t know where the copy I had as a child is now, but I knew I wanted to own this book again and share it with my daughter, because I had loved it. I searched for other books illustrated by Janet and Anne Grahame Johnstone and found Dean’s A Book of Fairy Tales. I remembered owning this book, too, and loved it very much.

A Book of Fairy Tales I started monitoring Ebay auctions for both books, and quickly learned I’m not the only one who loves them–they can be quite expensive! My wonderful mother found a copy of A Book of Fairy Tales on Etsy at an amazing price, and I bought it right away. I arrived in the mail today, and it is beautiful. It is in excellent condition, and the illustrations are so wonderful.

Jack and the Beanstalk

As I leafed through the book, I felt like I was seeing old friends. I remembered each illustration, each story. I must have spent a lot of time with this book as a child. I know my memory is poor, but I’m surprised that I completely forgot about these books. And I am equally surprised at how quickly and clearly my memories returned once I saw the covers.

The Frog Prince

The Princess and the PeaI am looking forward to sharing this book with Alexis, but I think we will wait until she outgrows her “must eat all the books” phase. Now I just need to get an amazing deal on the Mother Goose Book of Rhymes.

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2 Responses to A Book of Fairy Tales

  1. Jojo says:

    Hey, this was beautiful, I just experienced the same thing pretty much, except I just need to buy it ASAP. It took me 20years to even find the title of this book. I’m so happy im not the only one who also loved this book. I always had in my memory the details of the sleeping beauty story, just the illustrations alone.I have a baby as well, and need to buy this book so I can share it with her when she’s older.

    • Shannon says:

      I’m glad you were able to finally track down the book. It really is a beautiful book… I hope you are able to get a copy and share it with your daughter. 🙂

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