I absolutely love vintage books, especially children’s ones. I don’t pick them up very often because of limited storage, but when I see one I like I can’t resist taking it home and keeping it for a while. I especially like ones with inscriptions because they give you a little clue into the books former life.
One children’s book which I picked up in the summer is this copy of School Girl Kitty by Angela Brazil. I was drawn by the twenties style cover, but most of all I loved the little inscription inside.
The book itself is not dated, so this is really helpful when aging a book, although the book was first published in 1923 so the book could have been made any time in between.
Angela Brazil (1868-1947) was one of the first writers to produce school girl stories for girls. She published nearly 50 books in her lifetime, all of which were written for entertainment rather than moral instruction. Most featured boarding schools, and although many books of this style have been written since, her stories were quite innovative in her day. Her books were actually banned in some schools.
Her books were written from the points of view of young teenage girls, who she represented as independent and active in a way they hadn’t been so much before. Her success may well have been because girls could relate to the stories.
I’d love to research her a bit more and read a few of her books. I used to love Enid Blyton’s books especially the ones set in boarding schools, and it’s so interesting knowing where her inspiration came from.
Many of Angela Brazil’s books are available on Kindle.
Do you have any vintage books? Which are your favourites and what did you read growing up?
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Jessica CangianoNovember 8, 2013 at 12:30 pm
That cover is so wonderfully pretty – I would have been drawn to it in a heartbeat, too.
Growing up I read a lot of books that were vintage in age (and a few in actual years when it came to very book I was holding itself), spanning the writings of everyone from Laura Ingalls Wilder to Lucy Maud Montgomery, Charles Dickens to Beatrix Potter. I have no doubt that they each helped contribute in their own way to passion for the past that sprang to life at a very young age.