I have a weakness for tiny books - anything less than 3" tall (it almost undoubtedly began with the Nutshell Library, but microscopic bibles, teensy flip books...I'll take it.) So a few weeks ago, when I brought home all those nice moldy oldies from the book fair, this 1940s box of the Tiny Nonsense Stories (from the Tiny Golden Library) was one of my prized finds.
These little books are written by Dorothy Kunhardt and illustrated by one of my very favorites, Garth Williams (Little Fur Family, forever and ever.) I already have the 1980 boxed edition, and though the books are the same, the little production details on these boxed sets are so incredibly lovely (and the prices seem to creep up steadily every time I see them) I'm so happy to have this older and more beautiful set.
Everything about these books is perfect...the colors, the type. Everything. Each of the books is about some little misfit animal-child - they are featured on the thumbelina-sized cover, and their parents are illustrated on the back. The whole thing reminds me of Wes Anderson in the nicest way (just look at that squirrel papa above with the caramel-colored suit!)
The design of the box/slipcase is a little apartment building and
neighborhood, with enough tiny details and little implied narratives to
make you crazy - every inch tells a mini-story, from the sunbathers on top of the box (one of my favorite things) to the little bandit cat and bow and arrow-wielding mouse facing off on the left and right corners.
Again, Wes Anderson, do you own this? If you do not, you need one. And I know you can get your mitts on the most pristine copy around.
When you remove the books, this is what you see. Naturally, Garth Williams didn't leave just regular ol' white space here or a simple pattern.
No, it's a corner grocery store with a rabbit family perusing the produce section and a bear cashier!
The endpapers of each book show a playground scene with all the tiny protagonists playing...just another perfect detail among dozens and dozens.
There is another little box from the Tiny Golden Library called Tiny Animal Stories. I had the 40's era set of that one in my collection already - perhaps that one needs a post sometime soon?
I hope you have a nice week! It's (uncharacteristically) hot as blazes here, which isn't good. I need my 60 degree days and grey sky/coffee afternoons to best get my work done.