Friday, March 11, 2011

Obstreperous spring

I can feel spring lurking.  Our neighbors have some purple hyacinths by their porch, and every time I walk out the door I am greeted by that heady scent, that harbinger of spring.  Thank goodness.  I feel like leaping.


It's still March.  Obstreperous, obstreperous March.  Which leads me to thinking of one of my absolute favorite books from childhood, Obstreperous by Ted Greenwood. It's out of print, and exactly two images seem to have made it online, and they're practically thumbnails so I won't bother.  Suffice it to say, it's a book about a boy, his cantankerous, cranky, difficult kite, and his next-door neighbor Mr. Crinkle.  I mostly loved it because I liked the sound of the word "obstreperous".  Which is, I wager, the real point.  I don't know why the book reminds me of March, aside from the winds and the crankiness...those things spell right-before-Spring-weather to me, plus the outdoorseyness.

It seems like all my super-favorite kids books are out of print.
Rosa Too-Little
The Mouse Who Liked to Read in Bed
Edmond Went Far Away

Sigh.  Luckily, thanks to my mom, Rosa Too-Little and The Mouse Who Liked to Read in Bed are mine (vintage copies ftw), and the other two should still be at my parents' house (crossing fingers for future children there -- I don't know what I'd do if I had to grow up without Obstreperous).

It's a shame.  Edmond Went Far Away is another book that really says "spring" to me.

It's the story of a small boy who takes his first real adventure all by himself.  He lives on a countryside farm, and he tells all of his farmyard animal friends one by one that he going far, far away.  Edmond walks across fields and gets to a small copse of tall trees, and revels on the silence and magic of his first real all-alone wandering.

The book is illustrated by Michael Foreman.  The watercolors just scream spring SPRING SPRING SPRING SPRING to me.  I want a full framed print of Edmond leaping on the hill.  Sigh.

If that turns out to be impossible (as in, I do not find myself wanting to buy an extra copy just to carefully cut out a few pages for framing...), I might have to resort to some other spring-time prints.

Oh, and this tag books + design?  Basically, I like matching books with prints that exude the same sort of feeling.

Golden Field
Yellow bunny
Oak Trees

*"Kites" print used at the top right of this post is by thelittleredhouse

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