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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Now THAT'S a good book!

Early on in my children's book career, I was out in Greeley, Colorado attending the debut of a musical version of my book, The North Star. A local bookstore invited me to do a book-signing while I was visiting. I ventured to the shop which was located in a mall. I could tell it was a well-loved bookshop with narrow aisles packed to the gills with books. I ventured through the maze looking for someone in charge. I spotted an older woman who looked like she had been working -and perhaps living -in this shop for decades. Her eyebrow went up when she saw me. 

"I'm Peter Reynolds. I'm here for the book-signing."

Her eyebrow lowered and her furrowed brow told me that she had no idea of who I was or what book I might be signing.  I was fairly new at all this and quite ready to help bring her up to speed. I mentioned a new series I was illustrating called "Judy Moody." I told her about my book "The North Star" and how a local Greeley music teacher and an accomplished jazz musician, Tim Beckman, had transformed my story into a musical and how I had attended a performance of it at the Union Colony Civic Center.

I was telling her all this as she shuffled down the aisles in search of, I was guessing, copies of my books to sign. She stopped suddenly and picked up a small blue book and swung around. It was a copy of "Mr. Popper's Penguins" by Richard and Florence Atwater released in 1938.

She pushed it a few inches from my nose for me to get a real good look at it and said, "Now THAT is a good book."



After recovering from my bewildered state, I found the section with my books and signed.  

Before leaving, I did one last thing. 

I bought a copy of "Mr. Popper's Penguins."

On the plane ride home, I read it.  

She was right. It WAS a really good book. 



2 comments:

Patricia T. said...

Love your story. Quite humbling, I imagine. I've not read the book, but will look for it in the library. Looking forward to your teleseminar with Emma Walton Hamilton next week!

Joanna said...

Sweet story! I too will be listening in on the Hub on Tuesday!