Hello To All My Wonderful Stumper Friends

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Hello everybody,

Thanks for all of your patience and support as we have been catching up on the deluge of stumper requests sent to us while also preparing our store for the holiday season!  I am pleased to report that we are back on track to answer requests within a week of being sent.  My name is Julie and am happy to take over this page on behalf of Loganberry Books.  As a voracious reader, it makes me happy to see others find books they have been seeking for years.  On that note, I hope that everyone keeps reading all new posts and contributes where they can, to maximize the usefulness of crowdsourcing.  The more people commenting, the merrier!  I look forward to continuing to work with all of you, and if you have a question or concern please feel free to e-mail me at julie@logan.com

Thanks everybody!

Welcome to Stump the Bookseller by Loganberry Books!

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Welcome to the Stump the Bookseller blog!  Stump the Bookseller is a service offered by Loganberry Books to reconnect people to the books they love but can’t quite remember. In brief (for more detailed information see our About page), people can post their memories here, and the hivemind goes to work. After all, the collective mind of bibliophiles, readers, parents and librarians around the world is much better than just a few of us thinking. Together with these wonderful Stumper Magicians, we have a nearly 50% success rate in finding these long lost but treasured books. The more concrete the book description, the better the success rate, of course.  It is a labor of love to keep it going, and there is a modest fee.  Please see the How To page to find price information and details on how to submit your Book Stumper and payment.

Thanks to everyone involved to keep this forum going: our blogging team, the well-read Stumper Magicians, the many referrals, and of course to everyone who fondly remembers the wonder of books from their childhood and wants to share or revisit that wonder.  Isn’t it amazing, the magic of a book?

323Z: Girl Grows Up In Coastal Town, Where Body Is Found On Beach

The book I am looking for I read between 2006 and 2010. I believe it was a young adult novel/ coming of age and had a dark blue/purple cover with cursive writing. Looked to be a night image above the sea, maybe?

Plot was about a girl that, I believe, lived in coastal town (maybe northeast) with her family. They ran some sort of store (deli, small grocery or something) and they lived in back or above the store. She had a sister who got pregnant and married. I think her sister might have moved back home after she had the baby. She also had a couple brothers or one who was missing or had died. Tommy is ringing a bell of a character.

The main girl made friends with another prettier girl who was popular, and they were friends with a couple boys. They went to a dance at a local country club or golf club and I remember the main girl having issues over picking out the dress she wore. Something either yellow or with eyelets maybe?

I think someone died or drowned in the book? There was something that happened where a body was found down on the beach…Maybe related to the town trouble maker (his brother ?).

Sorry this is fuzzy and I think some plots of books I read during the same time running together. I thought a man wrote the book and it was out of his normal genre but I could be wrong.

I would greatly appreciate your help! I have been searching for this off and on for years. My friend has recommended it but she cannot remember it either.

323Y: Cream Puff Craziness

My parents read this book to me in the early- to mid-1970s. It was probably published around then, though earlier is also possible. It was a children’s picture book, fiction, and I remember that it had something to do with cream puffs. Not sure if cream puffs were in the title or not. To be honest, although to me cream puffs were very important to the book, I also wonder if that was just what my child-brain clung to. Thank you!

323X: Suspected Witch Is Really The Hexed One

I am looking for a children’s chapter book from the late 70s or early 80’s.  It was about a girl who gets sent to stay with a strange lady.  The girl thinks she is a witch, but it turns out some other lady is jealous of her and was placing spells on her.  I remember a scary scene when the girl is forced to drive the car to save her but the evil woman is in the back seat…

323W: Small White Teddy Bear Looking For A Home

I am looking for a book that I read in the mid 80s to early 90s. It is a book about a tiny white teddy bear who is lost and/or looking for a home. There are scenes of him wandering throughout a field. They also have him staged in a birdhouse…perhaps a dollhouse. This book is not illustrated. It is a series of photographs of a tiny white teddy bear staged in different locations. One of the locations is a birdhouse or dollhouse, one of the locations is a field. I don’t remember anything else. I submitted a query nearly 10 years ago, now 🙁 I’ve been looking since! Thank you

 

323T: Wise Dad Comforts Heartbroken Girl Who Was Denied Doll

I’m looking for a children’s book. I think the title may be “The Pinks” but I don’t know the author. It’s about a girl who is saving money for a doll in a store window. Before she can buy the doll, a rich girl from her school buys her. The girl is heartbroken and her dad says some wise things. The dad is a truck driver and he likes music. He says something like “strife makes good art”.  The book was probably written in the late 90’s or early 2000’s.

Thank you for your help!

323S: Reviled Colorful New Neighbor Saves Family From Fire

I’ve tried to track down this book periodically over the past few years with no success. I can’t remember the title or author at all. I don’t know when it was published, but I would have read this in the early 90s—and I don’t remember it seeming physically like an old book. I’m not sure if I can’t find it because it’s rare (hopefully not!), or if I’m just not using the right search terms. Maybe you can help! Here’s what I remember:

It’s a richly illustrated picture book about a quirky, flamboyant man (I’m pretty sure he wears a top hat?) who moves into a drab, stuffy neighborhood where he is ostracized by the uptight parents in the community. The illustrations are somewhat stylized (maybe — but not definitely — collage). One day, neighborhood children, who have been warned by their parents to stay away from this oddball, accidentally break his window with a baseball. (Or maybe they just hit it into is yard… I can’t quite remember.) In any case, when they go to retrieve their ball they discover this guy to be incredibly kind and welcoming. I think he gives them some pink lemonade.

The children, their parents, their houses, and the neighborhood in general are rendered in black and white, but the inside of the stranger’s house is bright and colorful. I can’t remember exactly what happens next, but I think the kids and the man become friends. When the parents find out, they are furious and forbid the children from hanging out with the man, which breaks his heart. I think the inside of his house turns black and white at that point.

But one night, the “ringleader” parent’s house catches on fire, and the strange man saves the family. I think I remember a page where the text is stylized to look like smoke. And I remember an illustration of the family members jumping from the window into a tarp held by firefighters (or maybe townspeople.) This leads the community to accept the strange newcomer, and the entire town bursts into color.

For whatever reason, I cannot figure out what this book is. And it is driving me crazy! If any of this rings a bell, I’d be thrilled. Sincerest apologies for all the vague rambling. And thank you!

323R: Teen Girl Loves Horse But Cannot Ride After Accident

Ya fiction series with a horse, rich girl has an accident and can't ride. Her rich grandmother buys her a brand new Datsun (car), so she's at least 16 or 17, set in the 70s or 80s, published during that period. I think she was nasty to a few girls and tries to make up for it after the accident. I think she may have been in a coma. Her boyfriend might have cheated as well. I think it had a yellow cover with the old style oval centre that contained the image. I think she had a rich sounding name, Courtney or something but I'm not 100% on that. The horse accident was bad and she desperately loved her horse but was too afraid to ride it. I read this series in the late 80s, early 90s, but my sister threw them out before I could finish them. I never forgave my sister, who dares throw out a book? The books were paperback, they had maybe 100 to 150 pages, so not very thick. From the content, I think they were targeted towards ages 16 and up. I think the girl went to college as well. Her grandmother was some type of business woman.

323Q: Town Gets Rid Of Laws And Other Stories (Solved)

Growing up, I was born in 1982, we had a book that was a compilation of short stories and some poems and other things. It was a light blue/teal colored hard back book with a paper cover. It was a bigger book, like maybe more of an 8.5×11 size. There was a story in it about a town that got rid of all the rules and laws for the day and people didn’t wear their seat belts and sped around town. And there were pictures in the book. There was also another story about 2 teenage sisters who got in an argument and one sister ripped the nose on the other sister’s David Lee Roth poster and tried to cover it up. The book was definitely super random with stories ranging from life lessons to fun little kid’s stories. At some point my mom has lost or gotten rid of it and I’ve been trying to remember what this book was for about 3 years now. It’s been driving me nuts and both her and my brother have no recollection of it. Please help!!!!