Friday, February 10, 2006

Zigger Beans

August 9, 2011 note to readers: for liability reasons, I cannot send you scanned pages of my copy of Zigger Beans. Our best recourse at this time is to petition Scholastic to reprint this book.

John the mouse was feeling mean,
Until he ate a zigger bean.
It made him sing a zigger tune
A ziggering beneath the moon.
A zigger-zigger-ziggering
beneath the golden moon.

As a child, the book Zigger Beans, written and illustrated by Diane Redfield Massie, was one of my favorites. I can quote it by heart. Ten years ago, my mother found the family copy and gave it to me. I wish I could link the book title for you, but it's so "unavailable" that the only copy I saw on a year ago was going for a lot of money. It's not fair. It's simply not fair. I don't want to sell my book for a lot of money-- I don't want to sell it at all. I just want it to be in print so I can use it for storytimes. It would be unfair of me to share the book in storytime, and then have people want to check out copies or buy them.

I finally got around to scanning the pages for my own personal use. If something happens to the physical copy of the book, at least there would be a back-up copy. I should figure out how to go about petitioning a book to come back into print. If I had my own publishing company, I'd be set.

John the mouse put on his skates
And rolled across the dinner-plates.
His mother said, "Good heavens, John!
Whatever are you rolling on!"

"I'm zigger-zigger-ziggering,
I'm ziggering," said John.

Three other out-of-print books that really should be in print:

*"I Can't," said the Ant, by Polly Cameron
*The Pumpkin Man and the Crafty Creeper, by Margaret Mahy, illustrated by Helen Craig
*Dinner at Alberta's, by Russell Hoban, illustrated by James Marshall

Please add to the list.


Melangell said...

Well, "they" republished Massie's book "The Baby Bee-bee Bird" (spelling?) but then got Steven Kellogg to illustrate it anew, thereby almost ruining it. Zounds!

Lone Star Ma said...

Cat in The Mirror

Liz said...

What a coincidence, I posted about a favorite book from childhood myself.

I have been searching in vain for a book from my youth. The closest I can remember it was something like "A Children's Collection of Fairy Tales and Fables". Every time I do an online search I come up empty handed. I've scoured every used bookstore in the county and still no luck. Other books have that title, but this one had the most beautiful illustrations. I imagine it was published in the early seventies. Some of the stories included were "Puss in Boots", "Beauty and the Beast" and "The Princess and the Pea". I can still picture the illustrations-vividly. So my search continues.

Noodle said...

Me and Caleb by Franklin Meyer, about two mischevious brothers growing up in the rural south, Missouri, I think. I absolutely adored it as a child. My childhood library still has the copy that I loved so much, and I've had to stop myself from asking if I could buy that copy.

Saints and Spinners said...

Melangell: I don't even want to think of Steven Kellogg's version. Kellogg might be my least favorite illustrator (or at least, he's way down there). I have the original version of Baby Beebee Bird, which is far more obtainable through the used-book route than Zigger Beans.

Lone Star Ma: I know Cat in the Mirror, if it's the one by Mary Stolz! It made quite the impression on me. It's funny-- I didn't remember the book at all until I saw the "Erin/Irun" connection.

Nonny: As I said to you on your blog, I will be happy to look out for the book for you. Any more information you have, anything at all, is valuable. I love doing book-detective work, and reuniting people with their childhood favorites.

Noodle: I may have some good news for you. It looks as if Me and Caleb has been republished as Caleb and Me. Please follow the link to see if it's what you remember. The price for the paperback ($14) is much, much more reasonable than what they want for the original edition ($95).

Lone Star Ma said...

That's the one. I VERY recently found it after literally years and years of searching - I originally read it at 12. I just loved it, but misremembered the name and was looking for The Egypt Cat (another out of print book, but I have not read it) for some of those years.

Another out-of-print book I love is An Alien Music, which I also found recently.

I also like Sharan Newman's Guinevere books and Persia Wooley's Guinevere books.

I just got hold of all of the out-of-print Myth-O-Manias, too. I rather doubt I will read them but the Lone Star Girl is going to be thrilled!

I read all the Trixie Belden books as a child when I was in my detective phase and they have recently come back in print!

Saints and Spinners said...

Lone Star Ma: I have most of the Myth-o-Mania books in my shopping cart, but am hoping that they will all come back into print before I have to buy them. Most of the prices are reasonable, but they get me on shipping. I did not put "Nice Shot, Cupid!" into my cart because the cheapest copy (for a PAPERBACK) is 20 dollars. There's some store in Atlanta that is asking 300 dollars for this paperback.

What are they thinking? How can they even think this is funny?! I'm certainly not laughing.

But I'll try:

Hah. Hah.


Lone Star Ma said...

I would not have paid that for it...I got them all very cheap but dear shipping, as you said. I was able to get most in groups from some same sellers to cut down on that, though.

Saints and Spinners said...

Lone Star Ma: I think I'm going to go that route, too, if I do get them. I wish I had purchased them earlier, but I thought that they would be popular enough to remain in print.

Noodle said...

Sadly, no, I don't think that's it. It's a different author, in any case. :o( I do sincerely appreciate your looking though!

I keep hoping that somehow I'll run across one in my thrift store rummaging.


Saints and Spinners said...

Noodle: I feel silly. I sent you the wrong link. What happened was that I saw three versions of "Caleb and Me" and mentally filled in the information that they were all by the same author. It's not a good trait for a librarian, but at least I catch my mistakes more often than not (I hope). Please let me know whether or not this link is more accurate.

Anonymous said...

funny that you don't care for steven kellogg. one of my favorite out of print children's books was illustrated by him! the titles is "molly moves out" and it's about a little girl rabbit who is frustrated with her bratty younger sibling rabbits, so she packs all of her worldly belongings into a wagon and moves into her own "house" down the road. it's a charming little story with a happy ending, but i think my favorite part was always the fact that molly had her own place to live that she could decorate and arrange exactly the way she wanted it. and she lived there on her own. that was always my dream as a kid.

Saints and Spinners said...

ABCGirl: That sounds like a lovely book. There is a listing for one copy with SPL, but of course it's "lost" which means that someone never returned it. I'll have to ILL it. By the way, Lucia enjoyed Flyaway Katie. She preferred the parts where Katie was getting dressed to the parts where Katie flew around in the picture.:)

There is a chapterbook I think you would like by Elizabeth Goudge, called The Blue Hills (USA) or Henrietta's House (UK). I would recommend it for any child who ever wanted a house of his or her own.

Anonymous said...

found it in my library's catalog, so it's on its way to my tall book stack right now!

i wondered with flyaway katie if parents would avoid reading the portion of the book where katie decorates her face and other exposed skin. it reminds me of munsch's "purple, green and yellow" which is a story with a great twist at the end, but i always wonder how parents will feel if i read about coloring one's whole body with markers during storytime... although i suppose the consequences of that action are a bit dire in munsch's tale.

Saints and Spinners said...

ABCGirl: While children are always going to get the notion to emulate characters in stories, as a parent, I would be far more worried about what my child saw on tv as far as that goes. With a book, it is assumed (at least for the pre-reading ages) that the caregiver is there with the child during the introduction of the book. There is no such indication with a television program. The book I Ain't Gonna Paint No More takes the body-painting art even further than Flyaway Katie, and I think it works (as does FK) on the level of the absurd. (Insert academic coughing and the sound of important papers rustling on the podium.)

Anonymous said...

I too have been searching for the Zigger Beans book for years. I cant understand why they dont reprint it. I have a partial photostat copy only (black and white). Do you have the naame of the original publisher. Maybe you can write and tell them the book is a collector's item and they should reprint it.
Good luck

Saints and Spinners said...

The name of the publishing company is Parent's Magazine Press. I wonder if they are even still in business anymore. What I keep meaning to do is to write to the author (if she's still alive) and find out what the status is.

Dick Durbin said...

I just came across your piece about Zigger Beans. My younger daughter is now 30, but I can still quote nearly all of Zigger Beans after all these years. I bet you I read it to my girls a couple of hundred times. I look forward to reading it to their children.

Saints and Spinners said...

Dick Durbin: Thanks so much for posting a comment! Zigger Beans really is catchy. I quoted it to my daughter, too, before I found my beloved copy from all those years ago.

lucy2shoes said...

The one book I was dying to get a hold of and read to my kids were Zigger Beans. I was obsessed about this story as a little girl growing up in the 70s. My Mom found one, paid a lot and I keep it in my kids room and still love reading it. It's reasurring that Ma Ma Mouse comes home after partying in her Halston dress and sandals after the zigger bean thing. So many little sweet messages in there. I feel like Ma Ma Mouse often but always remember to come home and be grounding for the baby mouse that is looking for Mom.

Saints and Spinners said...

Lucy2shoes: Hurrah! Another Zigger Beans fan. Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment about it.

Jen Ehinger said...

I am proud to say I still have my original copy of Zigger Beans from when I was a kid and now I read it to my boys. It's our favorite!

Saints and Spinners said...

Hi Jen,
I'm glad you still have your copy and that another generation gets to enjoy it. Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment!