The other day, I was reflecting on a great book I loved when I was a kid – Lazy Tommy Pumpkinhead, by William Pene Du Bois. It’s a fun tale of a spoiled kid who had everything done for him – until things went wrong. The illustrations of Mr. Pene Du Bois were partly responsible for my choice of career.
I thought how fun it would be to share the book with my third-grader. Alas, it’s priced out of my range. Finding out made me wish I had hung onto everything from my childhood. (But the practical side of me said I couldn’t pay the storage warehouse fees.)
These days, publishers are having to be even more choosy about which titles they reprint, so I don’t fault them.
By the way, his most popular title, The Twenty-One Balloons, is in print – and you can get it for about $4 shipped via Amazon.
One Reply to “It will just have to stay in my memories”
WPDB is the greatest illustrator ever. I hunted for Peter Graves with similar results… then found a used copy for a buck at a library sale! The best pictures in Childcraft are his as well. Never saw the book you mentioned, but we have a couple of others: The Three Policemen (?), one about a boy giant, 21 Balloons, can’t remember what else.
I also hunted for years for Heroes of Bear Creek, hilarious Western tall tales by the author of Conan. Prices were usually $80-$120, and then suddenly there was a copy under $15 so I jumped on it. I originally discovered it in Honduras in the paperbacks brought down for the volunteers. A friend had ended up with it, so I had him send it and I photocopied it. Started to scan and OCR it, but found the paperback by the time I had gotten to page 80. (Sample line: “Nothing sours the milk of human kindness worse’n getting pitchforked by a raging relative…”)
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