Art, Books

Bibliophilia: Child Stories


I make no secret that I love Kipling. So it shouldn’t surprise my readers I have a collection of antique Kipling books. I don’t usually read them, but as you’ll see, they are beautiful, not just space-fillers on my shelf. 

And I love gilding on books. So luxurious. 

This collection, published in 1899, contains some of Kipling’s tales intended for children, or at least about children, but not the very familiar Jungle Book. 
When was the last time you saw a publisher’s name so casual like that? Who knew Grosset Books was run by an Alex? 
I found it fascinating that this seems to be unfinished. If not, it’s an interesting artistic choice. 
Speaking of art, how is that for lovely, elegant, minimalist cover art? 
Speaking of art, there are a few illustrations in the book. They were glued in – doubtless by hand, in an age pre-automation – and one of them has disappeared, only a trace of glue remaining. The ones that are still extant are an interesting glimpse into the costumes of the era. 
The heavy paper has mostly escaped yellowing over the last 120 years, but there is some buckling as that soft fiber takes up humidity. 
Kipling’s grasp of dialect might make for heavy reading for today’s child! 

4 thoughts on “Bibliophilia: Child Stories

  1. If you can get them to “just say it, and listen to what you say,” it’s not bad.

    I use it to get the kids to recognize puns, and be comfortable doign things “wrong.”

  2. Your review of “Child Stories” popped up Goodreads when I went looking for an online copy, and your review lists the titles of the stories.
    Project Guttenberg provided a few of them to start my Sunday reading project.
    “Wee Willie Winkie,” was easy to find, I’d read it some time before, and now after rereading it I have to wait for the, aah, pollen attack to pass.

    Holding your copy means a physical and mental connection with every person who read those stories aloud.
    And is simply wonderful.

    1. It is wonderful. That’s part of why I started doing this series. I feel like I say so often that I read ebooks, I publish ebooks, but it isn’t that paper is dead. Just that things have changed. Books are practical art. I’ll have a shelf full of antique books where someone else might have a big painting. The topography of the books gives you more depth for the space 🤣

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