>The Irresistible Summons


Every year during the first week of March, schools, including daycares, celebrate Dr. Seuss. This is always a fun time, filled with parties, movies, books, and dressing up as characters-at least where I work.

However, this year, I had an idea and presented it to Director, along with Medea’s help. Younger children are much more familiar with Eric Carle books. Brown Bear, Brown Bear, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, etc. We suggested an Eric Carle week. Guess what? It’s this week!

I like to keep my own copies of children’s books to use when I need them for themes throughout the year. I already had The Cloud, From Head to Toe, Does a Kangaroo Have a Mother, Too? and Slowly, Slowly, Slowly Said The Sloth. I wanted a copy of The Very Busy Spider and picked one up at Barnes & Noble last week, their last copy on the shelf. We have all sorts of fun stuff to do this week (pretty great timing since it’s our last week with this group of kids before they move up), among them-hunting for all kinds of spider webs and spiders. Strangely, we’ve only found one spider….hmph.

Anyway, the point of this whole thing is this: when I brought my brand new spider book home, I did the first thing I always do with a new hardback book. I opened it up and put my face between the pages and breathed deeply. That new book smell. Mmmmm!!!! There’s nothing like it in the world. It’s the smell of the unknown and the newly created. A whiff of adventure and mystery. It’s the fragrance of fright, laugher, silliness and tears. An aroma of sorrow and hope.

Another deep breath. Invitation. Beckoning. Summoning…..

The inks, glues, papers and bindings have an essence that embodies and hints. It calls to me from deep within its center to come; to see and partake; experience and relish….and I always answer….

Do you have any ‘new book’ rituals?


About CuriousCat

I love to learn new things-anything from how to create a junk journal to the way light moves through space; why cats present their behinds to us to the effects of chemicals on our endocrine system. If it interests me, I can spend hours reading and learning about it.

Posted on August 17, 2010, in Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. >Eric Carle Week! What a great idea. I adore his books, so colorful and delightful.

  2. >The leather scent of new leather bound books does it for me.It takes me back to my first leather-bound book of childhood : THE COMPLETE ADVENTURES OF SHERLOCK HOLMES. {All his books in one huge volume.}It had taken me all summer mowing the lawns of everyone I could to buy it. I put it on layaway in a small bookstore. Every week faithfully, I would plunk down whatever money I earned.I was so close near the end of the summer I could taste it. I walked in one week with only a meager amount. Grass was getting slow to grow during that drought.I remember mournfully putting my few dollars down on the counter. Smiling warmly, the old bookkeeper put the leather bound book in my hands. She smiled."A tall old man with the strangest hat, long coat, and pipe came in here yesterday. He paid the rest of what you owe."She didn't fool me, but I felt my face beaming as I ran my fingers lovingly over the leather cover. She winked, "I would swear he spoke with an English accent, but he didn't stay long enough to be sure."She had my business until she retired a few years later. You sparked that memory with your post. Thanks, Roland

  3. >when i read a book that speaks to me, i smell the pages as i go along, breathing deeply as you say. it's weird becuz i'd rather buy used books, but if the local used bookstore doesn't have much, i don't hesitate and shop at the giant bookstore around the corner, and i feel slightly guilty about enjoying the smell of the pages of a new book. ray bradbury said he smells oatmeal off the page of a library book. i love that description.word verification: fookin. best word verification of my life:)good to be back here again after a little absence.

  4. >*Tricia-We all love Eric Carle in daycare. His books are designed to teach and they relate so well even to the little two's…and they are colorful!*Roland-What a completely lovely story from your childhood…I can just picture you as a boy, all sweaty from mowing, squirreling away the money. And how wonderful that 'that tall man' should lend a hand…I too, would have been a loyal customer. I'm all warm and fuzzy inside, thanks! I hope you're getting some rest!*Ed-It's good to 'see' you again! I laughed out loud when I saw the 'fookin'….not sure what that says about my blog, LOL. I was telling Co-Teacher that I love to get a book from someone that I know has really enjoyed it. Her son let me have his copy of IT and now, The Stand. It has more meaning that way. I too, prefer to shop used book stores-cheaper, broken in, and they've developed character. I'm going to see if I can smell any oatmeal….take care!

  5. >What a nostalgic read. I remembered all the books of my childhood that I gave away to charity…I still have a few of my childhood books, like DELTORA QUEST on my shelves, but I'm going to miss all my DOCTOR SEUSS, GOOSEBUMPS books, and whatnot. Perhaps when I can, I should buy them all again. Some new book rituals for me would be smelling the fresh ink off the pages, examining the wonderful cover art, and reading the first few pages before putting it down for a future reading, for when I'm ready to read it. Man, this post gave me chills down my spine with that hit of nostalgia! Write on and read on!

  6. >Whenever I get a new book I open it up and flip through the pages and watch them fly from the back to the front. I like feeling the paper in my fingers. 🙂

  7. >No rituals, but I do get a mini-high, a thrill, with each new book. When I flip open the cover, I'm breathless and anticipatory. I love the feel of the book's weight in my hand, the presence. I run my finger along the spine, fan through the pages, catch words as they float by.I buy audio books too, but they don't feed my addiction the way print books do.

  8. >Just reading them…and I put everything else on the 'back burner' until the book is finished.

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