Sunday, 12 May 2013

My book of the week: Scotty in Gumnut Land by May Gibbs

Oh good lord this is so adorable I just had to share it with you. I'm sure books by May Gibbs are very familiar in Australia, but we don't see that many of them in the UK. I've seen copies of Snugglepot & Cuddlepie and the Gum-Nut Babies in the past, but this is the first time I've seen Scotty in Gumnut Land. I'm a dog lover so anything about dogs always appeals, but this particular little dog is just wonderful!  I'm sure you've already guessed that Scotty is a Scottish Terrier, but this is a terrier with attitude!


Scotty lives with his humans in a town in Australia. He’s happy enough but is bored with staying in one place. When a visitor leaves the gate open Scotty grabs his chance to escape.


It’s not long before he’s set upon by two other dogs and ends up with an injured paw. Miles from home and lonely, Scotty meets a strange creature called Tiggy Touchwood who dresses in a conical black hat and scarf. Tiggy can conjure up spells that change the shape of things, bring them alive or turn them to stone. She has a friend called Mifrend (my friend), who works in a vast cavern filled with jewels. At one stage in the story, Mifrend, Tiggy and Scotty have to face a monster in the depths of the caves. But, as in all good stories the three friends end up living happily ever after!

Sometimes the covers are every bit as beautiful as the dust wrapper, and that is certainly true of this book.

Now that’s something you don’t see every day!

Scotty in Gumnut Land is now sold, thank you for your interest.

Have you read this, or anything else by May Gibbs?


47 comments:

  1. I'm pleased you found a May Gibbs book Barbara. I also have this one and I'm a May Gibbs fan.

    I've read a lot of her books and Little Obelia is a favourite.

    I hope you find many more:)

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    1. Hi Michelle, it’s a super little book I can understand why you are a fan. I'm pretty sure I've never seen a copy of Little Obelia, or if I have I've forgotten it. I don’t mind at all if this one doesn't sell, it would be very easy to find a home for it on my shelves! Thanks for calling in.

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    1. Hello Kandy, pleased to meet you. I will be over to visit your blog asap. It really is an adorable book. Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment. Barbara

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  3. ~ I am thinking I am quite possibly in love with this, 'wee' book, Barbara....Just looked at your website....I was looking through the annuals... and wondered about 'Twinkle'**** Do you ever see this particular annual Barbara... Precious memories come with this book for me....~ With kindest thoughts,.....Maria x

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    1. Hello Maria, it’s certainly very easy to fall in love with, and I have to admit I feel the same way!
      I have had copies of Twinkle in the past, but I don't have any now.There are some for sale at www.abebooks.com so you might find the one you are looking for there. Precious memories are the best kind!
      Thank you for visiting my website, I really appreciate it Barbara xx

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  4. I have NEVER seen this, ever! But I am a great lover of scottie dogs, any terrier really, who wears a striped t-shirt! Oh how utterly darling is this collection! Barbara, I am so glad I discovered your blog. Your posts are happy and sweet and this is the world that my husband and I have reveled in for all of our 31 years of marriage: the world of childrens' books. Thank you for this LIFT today, and I wish you a fabulous Mother's Day!!!!! Anita

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    1. Hello Anita, isn't that stripy T-shirt just adorable! Our last little dog (Rosie) was a Cairn terrier. She had the same kind of character as Scotty, mischievous but oh so loving and oh so loved.
      I’m so glad you discovered my blog too Anita. I love ‘talking’ with you, and visiting your blog. Collectors of children’s books are some of the nicest people around! Happy Mother’s Day Barbara x

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  5. What a lovely looking book. I do so hate being old (as my daughter constantly reminds me) because I would love to read one of these.

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    1. Hello Roger, The person who first though of producing children’s books with adult covers was certainly on to a winner. It makes it much easier to read them on the train!

      You will have to find a book you don’t mind damaging then hollow out the middle and conceal one of these inside. Problem solved! Barbara


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  6. Oh my Barbara - this is just the cutest ever! I have never heard of her before - did she write the stories as well as doing the illustrations? (I suppose I should visit your web page first before asking questions - I'm off there now!) That cover is so adorable - I love the little bare bottoms - don't suppose you would be allowed to put out a cover like that now.

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    1. I will find a copy for you Sharon x

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    2. That's so sweet of you Kylie. Sharon has mentioned what a lovely friend you are, and I can see why. Barbara

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  7. Hello Sharon, there is just something so cute and innocent about this little book, but you’re right I don’t think any publisher would use that illustration now. Yes, May Gibbs wrote and illustrated it. I don’t mind how many questions you ask, if I don’t know the answers, I will do my best to find out.

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  8. Not one I've heard of before, but beautiful illustrations :)

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    1. Thanks Nikki-ann it is quite special. Barbara

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  9. Never heard of this either, but how adorable!! The image of the Scotty jumping the rope held by the kangaroos is just too cute!

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    1. I agree Diane. I just love that illustration! It makes me smile every time I look at it.

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  10. This is such a cute story! I don't think I have ever read anything by this author- nor do I recall seeing her illustrations. This is just so fun! I love the cover and the details. Thanks for sharing this treasure!

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    1. Hi Stephanie, I enjoyed sharing, thanks for taking the time to call in. Barbara.

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  11. Hi Barbara, I still have my childhood copy of The Adventures of Snugglepot and Cuddlepie "with lots of love from Mummy and Daddy" from when I was six. May Gibbs lived in Perth (my home town) for a while - if you had the chance to walk through our bush you would clearly see where she got her inspiration from. Thanks for sharing an Aussie classic x

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    1. Hi Kylie, I love the May Gibbs illustrations the little Gumnut babies are adorable! You are so lucky to have the original book given to you by your parents. I can only imagine how special that must be. xx

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  12. Oh my goodness, such wonderful illustrations, simple and yet unbelievably sweet.

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    1. Thanks Tracy, glad you enjoyed them.

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  13. As they would say in the bush "that book is Fair Dinkum" great post well done.Agman

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    1. Thanks Agman, your comment was also Fair Dinkum!

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  14. Geez, just the names alone would be worth reading these books! How fun and cute they are!
    -Jamie
    ChatterBlossom

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    1. Hi Jamie, they certainly are! I feel so lucky to handle them and even luckier to be able to share.

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  15. Gotta love a story about a cute little terrier and a mysterious creature that can cast spells!

    I wanted to let you know that I responded to your Sunshine Award on my blog (finally).

    Cheers, Brandy from http://brandysbustlings.blogspot.ca/

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    1. Thanks Brandy, I'm looking forward to reading your post and will be over shortly. Barbara.

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  16. A lovely blog

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  17. Don't think I have ever seen any books by May Gibbs, and I obviously have been missing out on something. This book looks adorable, Barbara, I have always loved stories about dogs too :) The illustrations are very sweet.

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    1. Hello Hilde, I fell in love the moment I set eyes on this one. It’s just gorgeous. Thanks so much for your comment. Barbara.

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  18. Hello Barbara! I have never seen this book before but that illustrations are so cute!
    As always it's a pleasure to visit your fantastic blog, enjoying beautiful images and learning a lot.
    Besos!

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    1. Thank you for your lovely comment Silvina. I feel just the same way about your blog.

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  19. I've never seen this either but it's so cute, love it! x

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  20. I think you're right about the kangaroos and the terrier jumping rope. Very unique. I'm quite familiar with escape artist pups though....

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  21. Hi Eve, I had no idea your little dog was an escape artist, next thing you know, he will be learning to skip!

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  22. No, I haven't but you're right, it is adorable! Scotty, Tiggy and Mifriend sound like a nice gang to hang out with. And strangely, the name 'Gumnut Land' makes me a bit hungry ...

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    1. Hi Claudine, if it were called Cream Cake Land, I might feel hungry too, but I’m not so sure about Gumnut Land! Thank you for making me smile!

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  23. I love the cover illustration! Yes, we grow up with May Gibbs in Australia, and love the Gumnut babies illustrations.

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    1. They are gorgeous little books I can see why you love them. Thanks for calling in.

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  24. Great illustrations - is May Gibbs the author and illlustrator?

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    1. Hello Jill, yes, May gibbs both wrote and illustrated the Gumnut stories, and very lovely they are too! Thanks for following and commenting.

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  25. I too was given a copy of this book in the 1950s. I loved it and so did my much younger brother and my children. I was hoping to pass it on to my grandchildren but unfortunately over the years it seems to have got lost. I have tried to get another copy but it appears to be out of print. This surprised me as I expected it to be in the same category as Enid Blyton and Beatrix Potter for popularity.

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I really appreciate your comment. Thank you!
Barbara xx

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