Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Scholastic Fest: #25, Frog and Toad Are Friends

As I explained a couple of days ago, I spent some time this year, for nostalgia's sake, acquiring vintage Scholastic books, the kind you got through the Scholastic Book Club. Starting today, I'm going to count down, in reverse order like the late Casey Kasem, my Top 25 favorite covers. I'll have a new post at 1 p.m. (EDT) each day. (I still be blogging about ephemera this month, of course. Consider this a bonus feature.)

Here's #25...

  • Title: Frog and Toad Are Friends
  • Author/illustrator: Arnold Lobel (1933-1987)
  • Publisher: Scholastic Book Services
  • Year: First printing, December 1971
  • Excerpt:
    Toad was sitting on his front porch.
    Frog came along and said,
    "What is the matter, Toad?"
    You are looking sad."

    "Yes," said Toad.
    "This is my sad time of the day,
    It is the time
    when I wait for the mail to come.
    It always makes me very unhappy."

    "Why is that?" asked Frog.

    "Because I never get any mail,"
    said Toad.
  • Notes: Lobel's Frog and Toad books are among the most well-known and beloved children's books of the second half of the 20th century. There were four books in all, published between 1970 and 1979. This first one, Frog and Toad Are Friends, earned a Caldecott Honor award (essentially a runner-up to the Randolph Caldecott Medal). All of the books remain in print in various formats and remain top sellers. How many of you received your first book in this series through the Scholastic Book Club? How many of you still have that copy? ... Additional reading: This excellent June 2012 blog post on the School Library Journal website discusses Frog and Toad Are Friends and its origins.

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