Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Childhood Inspiration: Joan Walsh Anglund

I was one of those curious and thoughtful little girls. I always had a question and was a little philosopher. So naturally, the books of author and illustrator Joan Walsh Anglund captured my interest. I just loved, and still do, her adorable illustrations and interpretive prose.  My favorite was "What Color Is Love" (published in the 1966) was a favorite. I think I liked this one in particular so much because it made me wonder and made me wonder what others thought.  And although it may sound silly, I truly believe this little book influenced my writing.

I remember being about six years old copying this book to create a little book of my own. Perhaps it was my first attempt at publishing! :)  It consisted of  4 x 4 inch papers secured with a brass fastener.  I wrote and illustrated my way through the whole book.  I even have it to this day, although it seems to be misplaced or I would show it to you.

To the right you'll see a book review of "What Color is Love" from the Milwaukee Journal - Oct. 22, 1967. 

Since 1958 Joan Walsh Anglund has written and illustrated more than 90 books which have sold more than 40,000,000 copies worldwide. To learn more about her:  Joan Walsh Anglund - How and Why She Writes

Here is a sweet little book of hers you can read online:
Faith is a Flower

Now it's your turn.   Did any of your own childhood reading influence your writing today? And I must ask, what color is love?


  1. I remember these little books and adorable characters. I'd say love isn't one color; it's a rainbow.

  2. I agree with you, Keli. I think it's a rainbow too! Or prisms from a jewel!

  3. What a dear little book. I love the illustrations. And yes, childhood books majorly influenced me. Madeline L'Engle expanded my mind. Laura Ingalls Wilder taught me thankfulness and humility. Noel Streetfield opened up the exciting world of dance, theatre and skating. And the Black Stallion series brought adventure to my life.

  4. Thank you for the links, and for sharing this. I think love is the color of diamonds, where you can see sparkles and all sorts of colors.

  5. I'm sad I've not been introduced to her books before. Worthwhile!

    I can't think of one author from my youth; just that books in general have always done it for me.

  6. My blog home has moved!! Please update your link to me if you have one, if not come see me!!

  7. It's so wonderful that we can carry so many good things with us through our life. Sometimes people tend to focus on the burdens we have carried. And though they are an important part of us, it's nice to know the good things are part of us, too!

  8. Karen, I like your idea of the color of love being like the reflections and refractions of sparkling diamonds!

  9. Hi Carla -

    What cute books! I've never seen them before.

    I loved the Little House on the Prairie series, Anne of Green Gables, Little Women, and so many others. The imaginary trips into the characters' lives sparked my desire to write.

    Susan :)


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