What's the Name of That Book??? discussion

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UNSOLVED: One specific book > Children's Book - Father worked in prison in another town or state – and was often not at home for long periods because of this job.

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message 1: by Anne (new)

Anne (critteranne) | 71 comments This was either a children’s book, or a short story in one of those children’s readers. (If it’s a short story, I’m sure I’m out of luck.) I read it in the 1970s, but it was probably older. (Something about the way the characters acted seemed from an earlier decade.)

The hero was a boy whose father worked at a prison in another town or state – and was often not at home for long periods because of this job. (He might have been a warden.) One day, he noticed that the fellow students started acting differently around him – not talking to him, etc. He later learned it was because someone (possibly an adult?) had seen a letter or package he was sending to his father, addressed to his father at the prison. Someone assumed his father was one of the prisoners, and of course, other adults were told next, people told their kids not to play with him, etc., etc.

I know it's not a lot to go on, but this group is full of book ID superheroes!

Thanks!


message 2: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 39275 comments Mod
Anne, are you still looking for this or did you find it?


message 3: by Anne (new)

Anne (critteranne) | 71 comments I never did find it. I didn't know enough about the book to add more details. :(

It might have been a short story in one of those classroom books. Those often had moral points -- like "Don't judge your classmate because he sends packages to prison." :)


message 4: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 39275 comments Mod
Still looking now?


message 5: by Anne (new)

Anne (critteranne) | 71 comments Yup. But I remember so little about it. That's why I think it might have been a story in one of those classroom "reader" books. Once or twice, I bought a used textbook with children's stories at school fairs.

Or it could have been a smaller incident in a longer book. Looking back, I seem to remember that some of the children's books from the 1950s through 1970s seemed more episodic than many children's books today. There might be a loose central plot (like a story about a boy moving into town or visiting relatives on a ranch), but no "overarching" plot.


message 6: by Rainbowheart (new)

Rainbowheart | 19026 comments The Girl of Black Island sounds kinda similar, but the MC is a girl.


message 7: by Anne (new)

Anne (critteranne) | 71 comments Thanks! That sounds interesting anyway. It’s too recent for the story I’m remembering, but I also remember that author was hugely popular in the 1980s and 1990s.


message 8: by Rainbowheart (new)

Rainbowheart | 19026 comments It was first pubbed in 1964, but that particular edition was released in the '80s.

Was the boy a preteen?


message 9: by Anne (new)

Anne (critteranne) | 71 comments Rainbowheart wrote: "It was first pubbed in 1964, but that particular edition was released in the '80s.

Was the boy a preteen?"

I sure he was. At the time I read it, I was reading primarily about kids who were my age (except for Nancy Drew).


message 10: by Rainbowheart (new)

Rainbowheart | 19026 comments If it was a story in a Language Arts reader, it could be harder to track down. Many of those were not published as stand alone novels.

Some textbook publishers from that era would be Houghton Mifflin, Harcourt Brace, Silver Burdett Ginn, Scott Foresman, and McGraw-Hill.

Do any of those look familiar? Do you remember anything about the textbooks your elementary school used?


message 11: by Anne (new)

Anne (critteranne) | 71 comments Language Arts reader! That's what they're called. :) I think this was in an older one that I bought used. (I was a nerdy kid!) The school used something else (which I don't remember). And later, they started passing out Read magazine from Scholastic.

My hope is that I'll run into it in a used bookstore or at one of those antique malls. I found some at an antique mall a few years ago and tried looking for stories I remembered.


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