The Friendly Book

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Overview

I like cars / Red cars, green cars / Sports limousine cars / I like cars . . .Since 1954 parents and children have adored The Friendly Book, where everything is likable, from bugs to boats and from cars to stars. Garth Williams's lively illustrations are a perfect counterpart to Margaret Wise Brown's playful lists of wonderful things.
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Overview

I like cars / Red cars, green cars / Sports limousine cars / I like cars . . .Since 1954 parents and children have adored The Friendly Book, where everything is likable, from bugs to boats and from cars to stars. Garth Williams's lively illustrations are a perfect counterpart to Margaret Wise Brown's playful lists of wonderful things.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Golden Books brings back three Big Little Golden Books, picture books from the 1940s and '50s now available in larger-sized, paper-over-board editions. Originally published in 1954, The Friendly Book by Margaret Wise Brown, illus. by Garth Williams, uses rhyming verse to explore a whole series of likable things. It's a paean to dogs and boats, cars and stars-as in "I like stars/ Far stars/ Quiet stars/ Bright Stars/ Light stars/ I like stars/ A star that is shooting across the dark sky/ A star that is shining right straight in your eye/ I like stars." Williams packs the illustrations with quirky, often hilarious details; for the spread about stars, for example, a rabbit balloonist floats through the night sky in a patched-up balloon, labeled "starship," with a bird's nest on top of it. The Saggy Baggy Elephant by K. & B. Jackson, illus. by Tenggren, debuted in 1947. A happy little elephant named Sooki dances through the jungle until a saucy parrot makes fun of Sooki's saggy, baggy skin. This pachyderm-cum-ugly-duckling story features richly hued artwork against white backgrounds. A spare text tells the tale of a fire and the heroic firemen who rush to put it out, in The Great Big Fire Engine Book (1950) by Tibor Gergely, "Quick! Connect the hoses! S-s-s-s! goes the water." The rescuers swarm over each spread with reassuring efficiency. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Brown's 1954 book is re-issued in this Big Little Golden Book. Each page's verse begins with "I like" and then goes on to list examples. The first page, for example, states "I like cars. Red cars. Green cars. Sport limousine cars." This simple but effective and catchy pattern is followed throughout the book. William's illustrations are colorful and humorous; a child who cannot read will have fun just looking at his pictures. Animals of all types drive cars, ride on trains, and look at snow. Although the animals are fun, it does make for a confusing picture for the "I like dogs" page, but that is a minor flaw. Humans appear on the final two pages of "I like people," providing a nice ending to this book. Fifty years later, Brown's words still have the power to educate and entertain children. 2003 (orig 1954), Golden Book, Ages 3 up.
— Amie Rose Rotruck
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780307605924
  • Publisher: Western Publishing Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/1/1954
  • Series: Big Little Golden Book Series
  • Age range: 4 - 7 Years

Meet the Author

Margaret Wise Brown

MARGARET WISE BROWN (1910-1952), best known as the author of Goodnight Moon, wrote countless children's books inspired by her belief that the very young were fascinated by the simple pleasures of the world around them. Among her many bestselling Golden titles are Mister Dog, The Color Kittens, The Golden Egg Book, Seven Little Postmen, The Friendly Book, and The Sailor Dog.

GARTH WILLIAMS (1912-1996) is known for his realistic yet highly expressive animal characters. His unique style has brought to life some of the best-loved children's books of the 20th century, including E. B. White's Charlotte's Web and Stuart Little, and the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. He illustrated many timeless Golden Books, among them Baby Farm Animals, Mister Dog, The Friendly Book, The Sailor Dog, The Giant Golden Book of Elves and Fairies, and The Kitten Who Thought He Was a Mouse.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Golden MacDonald, Juniper Sage, Timothy Hay
    1. Date of Birth:
      May 23, 1910
    2. Place of Birth:
      Brooklyn, N.Y.
    1. Date of Death:
      November 13, 1952
    2. Place of Death:
      Nice, France

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 4, 2013

    The Best

    We need these kinds of books.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 4, 2005

    my favorite book

    This was my favorite book as a child and even now when reading it I get the same pleasure as I did then. The illustrations are capitvating and the words are simple but true. It remains one of my favorite books. I have a copy of the original and will be reading it to my three year old neighbor.

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