A book is not just for bedtime


With the exception of Rupert the Bear annuals, growing up in the sixties didn’t offer the choice of books available to kids today.

My book collection consisted of a second-hand 1958 Denis Compton annual, an I-Spy Zeppelins (probably third-hand) and three of the set of twenty-four Noddy books;  I remember vividly Noddy Book No. 4, entitled: “Here comes Noddy again” – this was about Noddy being kidnapped, not his sexual prowess.

I have three grandchildren, two of whom are nearly one-year-old. Their combined libraries would rival those of the British, Bodleian and Balham!

One series which dominates the twins’ bookshelves is “That’s not my Something(like puppy, kitten unicorn).  The premise is the first five double-pages features puppies, kittens or unicorns not belonging to the reader.  The sixth double page spread reveals the ostensibly lost puppy/kitten/unicorn with the phase, That’s my unicorn – its head has a massive stick coming out of it!” (or something like that)

We never had books this exciting growing up, and I pondered if we had, what they’d have been?

“That’s not my ration book; all the stamps are missing!”

“That’s not my home-made go-kart; none of the constituent parts are stolen!” or

“That’s not my TV; Bonanza’s never in colour, therefore a valve has blown and the set’s on fire!”

Night, night children everywhere, unless you happen to live in the dark, dark wood, as featured in Noddy Book No. 4.


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