Remember the Velveteen Rabbit, so loved that his "beautiful velveteen fur was getting shabbier and shabbier, and his tail becoming unsewn, and all the pink rubbed off his nose where the Boy had kissed him"? Which children's books do you have that are absolutely worn out? The blogger at A Wrung Sponge was asking that question the other day.
My son started loving Alphabet Band when he was a baby. It was a talking book, a hand-me-down from a friend. I can still remember the first line, "Alligator number one/squeezes the accordion." As long as he had his alphabet book and his favorite people in the room, our baby was happy. And if Grandma just happened to be reading the book with him while he pushed the different buttons, well, that was Nirvana.
I have no picture of Alphabet Band because not only is it out of print but our own copy was so well-loved that it gradually fell apart. I wonder if our son would recognize it if he saw the book again. I bet he would.
Today at the school library where I volunteer, I kept an eye out for the most-appreciated (i.e., worn out) books on the shelving cart. The tattered paperback copy of A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, by Mark Twain, makes sense. Twain lived fairly close to here at different times. To judge a book by its cover, the Illustrated Junior Library's edition of Tom Sawyer had seen many a reader, too, as had the anthologies A Hatful of Seuss and Beware!: R.L. Stine Picks His Favorite Scary Stories.
What are the worn-out books in your house or library? You can answer at your own blog or right here in the comments.