Tales from Fern Hollow
A hot air balloon in flight at the Mid-Hudson Valley balloon festival along the Hudson River in Poughkeepsie, New York (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
It was 1983. My son was four. In my mother-in-law’s neat, teacher’s hand, she wrote his name on the inside frontispiece, under, “This book belongs to:”
That is probably my favorite part of a book.
It is a personal statement. Someone loved you enough to give you this book.
You can share it. But, it will always be yours.
Later, a companion book came from his grandparents. In this one, a child’s uncertain hand printed his name.
Each time I read these books to my grandson, the boy’s son, we start by reading, “This book belongs to:” I always ask him who that is.
“My father,” he shyly replies.
Only recently has he come to believe his father was once young enough to be read to as I now read to him, torn between believing Grandma and the facts in front of him, his father full-grown.
Where Is Fern Hollow?
Fern Hollow is a forest next to River Ferny where animal adventures take place.
British children’s author and illustrator, John Patience is also a book designer.
The 17 Tales of Fern Hollow animal stories are among his 140 published books.
Brock Gruffy, who looks to be a walking skunk, crashes a hot-air balloon into the church steeple, in Brock, the Balloonist.
Farmer Bramble hosts tug-of-war games, and foot, sack and egg-in-spoon races on his farm and in his house, in the book Sports Day.
Frogs as photographers, hedgehogs as painters, rabbits as bakers, and foxes as judges all seem plausible at Fern Hollow.
Why Do They Still Charm?
To a parent’s eye, these books are delightful to read because of the beautiful paintings of animal characters on each page.
To a grandma’s eye, it is the tie between generations that reading these stories cements.
But, to my grandson’s eye, it is the adventures these animals have every day that makes him bring them to my lap over and over when it is time for bedtime stories.
Click here to order Tales from Fern Hollow: Sports Day
What stories did you read to your children that are now favorites of your grandchildren?
What stories did you read as a child that you now read to your grandchildren?
What are their favorite stories?
To you and the delight of sharing favorite stories with your grandchildren.
Carol Covin, Granny-Guru
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- Just Maybe… I Could Have Sailed Off With Them to a Magical Land! (grannyscolorful.wordpress.com)
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Tales from Fern Hollow. Book Thursday.