The Milly-Molly-Mandy Storybook is a gem about the utter simplicity of being young, innocent, and in love with the world.


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The Milly-Molly-Mandy Storybook << Prev page
Joyce Lankester Brisley
Illustrated by Joyce Lankester Brisley

When a favorite book of ours goes out of print, we usually take a few minutes to do some serious grumbling and bemoaning. And then we have to move on. If it's a picture book, there's always a chance it will be resurrected by Walker Publishing in its Chinaberry Classics imprint. But if it's not a picture book, we've become resigned to the fact that we'll never see it in print again, most likely. Yet on two occasions we felt so strongly about an out-of-print book that we actually called the books' last publisher to inquire about buying the rights so we could print them ourselves.

Milly Molly Mandy was one of those two books. .

And the fates were smiling on us the day we made that call, only to find out that a British publisher had already, yes, made the world a better place by bringing this gem back into print. And here it is.

Milly Molly Mandy is a book that you should read to your child the minute s/he can sit and listen to text without a lot of illustrations. The heroine, after whom the book is named, is a young girl of many-years-ago England. (Most of the stories in this collection were written in the late 1920's.) She is 6-ish and lives with an extended family in the country. Her joys and challenges and disappointments and adventures are of the sort a child of that age should have to deal with. (Unlike what our culture routinely puts on our children's plates and tells adults something to the effect that ''they can handle it,'' that this is ''real life,'' etc.) In this book Milly Molly Mandy tackles things like spending her first night away from home, successfully remembering all of the things on her lengthy errand list, being helpful to her neighbors, attending her first wedding, taking joy in being given trust and responsibility, etc.

There are 21 different stories in this storybook and every single one of them begins with ''Once upon a time...'' It is a truly charming book. Gentle, simple, innocent. The text and setting are a bit British, the stereotypes are 1920ish, Milly Molly Mandy and her family and friends are heartwarming in their generosity and in the way they live their lives. This book is a beautiful example of the ways in which stories can show graciousness, the exploration of conscience, the realization that not one of us is the center of the universe.

Simple black and white drawings can be found every couple of pages or so. As I said before, this is the perfect book to read to a child who is ready to listen rather than to look and listen. Milly Molly Mandy has an innocence to it that is refreshing and will help keep alive a small child's sense of wonder and belief in the simple pleasures of life

(Ages: 3 - 7 years)

#7503 - Hardcover Book - 224 pgs
Regularly $13.99   Sale price $5.97

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