I don’t do jigsaw puzzles very often these days, but I do enjoy them and thought I would share with you one that I completed recently. It’s called A Reader’s Delight and the picture shows vintage children’s books from the Bodleian Library collection.
While I was working on the jigsaw, I found some of the titles of the books quite amusing and others quite sexist (but very much of their time; none of these are modern books).
For the boys we have Every Boy His Own Mechanic by Bernard E. Jones, The Boy’s Handy Book by D.C Beard and The Monster Book for Boys, while the books for girls include An Incorrigible Girl by M.H. Cornwall Legh (published by the Religious Tract Society in 1899 apparently), A Very Naughty Girl by L.T. Meade and A Wilful Girl by Helen Griffith. On the other hand, we do have The Adventure Book for Girls and Eight Girls and their Adventures…and I was particularly intrigued by Things Worth Doing and How to Do Them by L. and A.B. Beard. I’ve discovered that it’s available on Project Gutenberg – a collection of crafts and other activities aimed at girls.
There are lots of school stories here as well – Bunty of Dormitory B, The Jolliest Term on Record, The Abbey Girls Go Back to School. The ones for boys seem to concentrate on sport – Playing the Game: A Public School Story by Kent Carr, Not Cricket: A School Story by Harold Avery, For School and Country by Ralph Simmonds.
Have you read or heard of any of these books? I wonder what children would think of them today!