March 14, 2012

The Giant Golden Book of Elves and Fairies

I talk about a lot of books. Now I hope you know that I’m not proposing you go out and buy all of those books. LIBRARIES, my lovelies. The library is your friend. But there are some books you check out, borrow or share, and there are some books that you want to own. Forever.

‘The Giant Golden Book of Elves and Fairies’ is one to own. FOREVER. And hopefully one that your grandchildren will own forever.

(Do you see this? ‘Assorted Pixies, Mermaids, Brownies, Witches, and Leprechauns’ !!!!!!!!)


IS THIS ART BLOWING YOUR MIND? My mind is blown already, as you can tell.

I always wanted to find a brownie in the garden when I was little. Hey! All you parents with boys! Most of the stories in this book have boy protagonists. Read them this book so they’ll grow up and be able to talk coherently about fairies to their daughters and then their girls will think they ARE SO RAD.


‘The Cannery Bear’ is my favorite. There’s a FAIRY BEAR! FAIRY BEAR!!!!! With little wings!

MERMAID BABY!!!!!!!!!!!! MERMAID BABY!!!!!!!!!! MERMAID BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!

The ONLY way to travel is with a leprechaun because then he can make your horsie fly.

I don’t even know how to contain all the verbal and emotional squealing that I want to do with this book.  (SO I DIDN’T.)

I bought it 3 years ago and have been saving it until Julia was old enough for it. As you can see, it’s text intensive, so I think it would be best for ages 4 and up. Maybe 5 and up if your kiddo is antsy like mine.

The art by Garth Williams is JUST THE BEST EVER. I wanted to put this book on the agenda before St. Paddy’s Day because there are several leprechaun stories in it. The title is somewhat misleading actually, because there are far more stories about leprechauns and pixies than fairies and elves, but hey, I’ll take it!

THIS BOOK IS FULL OF MAGIC. It’s the kind of book that you’ll remember when you’re a bazillion years old. (So is this one but it’s a million dollars and impossible to get -- I tried to stealth-ninja bid on it on Ebay and got so freaked out that I forgot my password and lost my bid, so don’t go get it, or if you do don’t tell me about it because I WILL COME TO YOUR HOUSE AND STEAL IT.)


  1. I had to pin both books. They're GORGEOUS! If you do a search on Etsy in the vintage section for "The Tall Book" you'll find other lovelies (though I didn't find the one you mentioned).

  2. This was one of the last purchases I made with my employee discount, before my bookstore closed. It's pretty wonderful!

  3. @Michelle: I have GOT to start poking around Etsy for books! Actually, on Amazon, The Tall Book of Make Believe is cheaper than it was, it's down to $175 from $300 but gasp, that is still a LOT.

    @Danzel: Habbawhah? Did you have a bookstore??? COOL! That's my big life dream, to have my own bookshop.

  4. I'm hopeless in the face of anything Giant Golden book related. sigh...

  5. Oh man! I feel like this should have been a book I read all the time as a kid... but guess what??? this is the FIRST TIME I EVER SAW IT! what??? Oh I want it bad. So great.

  6. You have made me want this book badly!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. I got this book based on the cover alone, and only after it arrived into my hot little hands did I discover how incredible everything INSIDE the book was!

    It is BEYOND MY COMPREHENSION as to how/why the Tall Book of Make Believe hasn't been reissued...

  8. It wasn't mine, just the one I worked at for 11 years. My dream is to someday own a children's bookstore. Maybe after the novelty of the so-called digital revolution wears off...

  9. Totally my life dream too, Danzel! You have amazing book taste, I'm so happy that we found each other on Pinterest....

  10. My absolute favorite book, too, Melissa!! And yes, The Cannery Bear my favorite story. I happened on your site because I was looking for some references to that story in something i'm working on for a monthly "President's Column" I write as current president of my local bicycle club...(Grizzly Peak Cyclists....our motto is "Ride to Eat, Eat to Ride") now I'm using a link to your website for that reference.. and the photo..... i was so happy to find your site and blog about the Giant Golden Book of Elves and Fairies, and all the wonderful photos... Your captions represent exactly the way I feel about the book and those wonderful stories.....I still have my Giant Golden Book, too!

    1. oh fun!! so happy you found my site, i'm always amazed when that happens, ha ha ha! this book is really a treasure, it's one of my big big BIG favorites.

  11. Linda McBride. I used to own this book as a child and absolutely loved it. I learned all the poems and can still quote most of them. My Mum threw the book away when I left home and I have been looking for it ever since. I am now 63. I didn't know the full title which made it difficult so I typed in one of the story titles, The Cannery Bear and found the book in your book store. Needles to say I bought it. Can't wait to get it Thank you so much Julia for your wonderful shop