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Blog 12.05.2021

Little Golden Books: A Golden Opportunity For Literacy

Little Golden Books are a series of beloved children’s stories created in 1942 and are now regarded as treasures passed down through generations. With the publication of the first Little Golden Book, the idea of affordable and accessible books for children was novel. The fact that families could afford these adorable, high-quality books (for just 25 cents) immediately caught on, and the rest is history. Little Golden Books are known for their slim size, signature golden foil spines, and cardboard backing. 

With titles like The Poky Little Puppy, Goodnight, Little Bear, Tootle, Scuffy the Tugboat, and The Shy Little Kitten, these sturdy, hard-back books became synonymous with nurseries and bedtime reading. 

Did You Know?

  • Did you know Little Golden Books helped make literacy accessible for all families? Because of the reasonable price, these books became a staple in households.

  • There are now nearly 700 titles in print and over a billion books have been sold! 
  • Many of the early books or “Little Golden Book Classics” are now vintage collector’s items.
  • Margaret Wise Brown (known for Goodnight Moon) wrote several Little Golden Books, including The Whispering Rabbit, The Sleepy Book, and Little Pussycat.

Favorite Characters 

The simple stories—with their charming illustrations—were not at all condescending, and children responded almost immediately.

  • The Poky Little Puppy has sold more copies than any other children’s picture book. The Poky Little Puppy is a story of a white and brown puppy with a curled tail and pink tongue that dawdles while stopping to examine a small green gecko and spotted caterpillar. 
  • Richard Scarry’s Good Night, Little Bear is remembered for its darling cover illustration depicting Little Bear on his Father Bear’s shoulders, heading upstairs for bedtime. Little Bear is clad in blue pajamas with the feet sewn in, while Father Bear dons a bright yellow tie to match the walls in the background. Complete with cozy touches such as a Grandfather clock, Good Night, Little Bear is a favorite for bedtime reading. 
  • Tootle is a little yellow steam engine spilling coal from its caboose as it veers off the train tracks.

Winter Reading

These Little Golden Books are absolutely perfect for this time of year. There’s nothing better than quality reading (that both parents and children will love) for the winter holidays!

  • Once Upon a Wintertime features a couple of ice skating complete with bunny rabbits and an idyllic snow-covered backdrop.
  • Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is a classic that children will be able to memorize and recite by heart. Try reading this holiday favorite before watching the movie!
  • The Animals’ Merry Christmas is fondly remembered mostly for Richard Scarry’s brilliantly charming cover illustration, complete with a bear, owl, rabbit, raccoon, cat, and two small birds singing Christmas carols and playing instruments in the snow.
  • Frosty the Snow Man is, of course, a must for all children during the holidays. How else would they know about this magical character, complete with a corncob pipe, a button nose, and two eyes made out of coal? 
  • The Christmas Story is ideal for anyone looking for a religious Christmas storybook. 
  • The Little Golden Book of Hymns is another perfect winter favorite for little ones who wish to go caroling. 
  • Mickey Mouse Flies the Christmas Mail is a delightful addition to any children’s library as Mickey Mouse is a classic beloved character. Complete with vintage Disney illustrations, this little book is guaranteed to charm young readers.

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