"BUT MOST OF ALL, STAY ON THE RAILS NO MATTER WHAT": FIRST EDITION OF TOOTLE, 1945, WITH THE RARE TOOTLE PICTURE PUZZLE
CRAMPTON, Gertrude. Tootle. WITH: Tootle Picture Puzzle. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1945. Square octavo, original half blue cloth, original pictorial boards, pictorial endpapers, original dust jacket. WITH: Nine-piece jigsaw puzzle, measuring 6-1/4 by 7-3/4 inches.
First edition of this early Little Golden Book emphasizing the importance of conformity, with the scarce original dust jacket. Accompanied by Little Golden Book's Tootle Picture Puzzle, in original pictorial publisher's box.
"Sociologist David Riesman cited Tootle as an emblematic fable of mid-20th-century Americans' growing preference for conformist, or 'other directed,' style of decision-making and group behavior… [It was] a theme that countless first-generation Golden readers would live out for themselves in the years to come, whether as go-getting 'organization men' and suburban Republican cloth-coat homemakers' or (for those who chose to reject the story's lesson about the rewards of staying on track) as alienated, Jack Kerouac-inflected rebels and partisans of the 1960s counterculture" (Marcus, 96). Little Golden Books, which sold for only 25 cents in 1945, were intended to be both durable and affordable. At the time, most children's books sold for $2-$3 and were considered a luxury by many American families, especially given the strictures of the wartime economy. "Little Golden Books, with their colorful, bright pages, were designed to be handled by children, and inexpensive enough that children could read or handle their books whenever they wanted. With these qualities and many more, the books became very popular with parents… For the first time, a quality children's book was made available to children who normally couldn't have afforded one" (Santi, 9). Tootle was number 21 in the series. With the War Bonds mention on the inside rear flap of price-clipped dust jacket. Jones 747. Santi, 447.
Book with shallow dampstain along bottom edge of book, a few spots of soiling to spine, bright, fragile dust jacket with light wear to extremities and a few tape repairs to verso. Puzzle completely intact with only slight wear. An exceptionally good copy with matching puzzle.