Friday, September 3, 2010

Friday Favorites: Childhood Revisited - Louise Tripp

There are days that I feel sad and that sadness leads to nostalgia. I get nostalgic for a childhood where I was free to balance between tree branches, run after ice cream trucks, get so high on the swings that I felt like I'd touch the sun and play with my imaginary friends - one of which came in the form of a to-the-hip tall plastic doll named Sara. At six years old, you could not tell me that Sara was a doll, though. Sara was real. She had black braids, pouty red lips and eyes that opened and closed. My parents had to set a place at the table for her, too, or I wouldn't eat. It just wouldn't have been fair to Sara. 

I guess that's part of the reason that, to this day, The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams remains one of my favorite picture books of all time. If I ever had children, it would be an essential part of their personal childhood library. For now, it's an essential part of mine - one that I do revisit from time to time. And it still makes me cry. 

My copy has beautiful pictures in it. The book itself is about a child who loves his velveteen rabbit so much that he thinks of the rabbit as "real." But when the boy becomes ill, the little rabbit doll must be parted from him. It's a classic tale of unconditional love and what a gift it can be. 

If you've never read it, you're never too old. 

Louise Tripp grew up in North Carolina. She currently lives in Chicago, where she is revising her first YA novel and working in a public library. You can read her regular blog at

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