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I was thinking about it the other day — I can’t actually remember a time when I didn’t know how to read. I knew the alphabet at eighteen months. At three, I was reading the TV Guide. Mom got me into Kindergarten at four, where a teacher’s assistant told my father, “Alethea can spell words I don’t even know.” By the time I was five I was reading myself sick. There’s photographic evidence.

My library card was smoking. I never checked out less than 20 books every two weeks (20 was the limit) — I started at the Juvenile section of the Richland County Public Library and worked my way through. My parents went to almost every single Friends of the Library book sale they could find…in every town we ever visited.

So, yeah. I read a lot. I read some really good books that are still around and some really obscure books you might never have heard of that are long out of print. Every time I think of one of these books I don’t have, I send it to my mother to add to her list. Every holiday I receive a blast from the past, as my mother pieces together the favorite library of my childhood. Some books, the cherished ones, I’ve kept from way back when.

So what am I going to do with all these books?

Well, I’ve decided to start a new section on this blog called BOOKS ON THE BED (an homage to that 5-year-old with one serious addiction). I hope to remind you of some old books and possibly introduce you to some gems you’ve never heard of to keep an eye out for at your next Friends of the Library book sale. If you have kids, they’ll thank you. If you are still a kid like me…you’re welcome.

Title: They Call me Boober Fraggle
Author: Michaela Muntean
Pub date: 1983
Status: Out of Print

Boober was always my favorite. He was the Eeyore of Fraggle Rock, always worrying about this thing or that. In this little hardcover given to me in 1984 and inscribed by my grandmother, Boober worries about what exactly makes him special. All of his friends have something special: Gobo is adventurous, Wembley is happy and easygoing (and essentially Wash from Firefly), Mokey is the poet, and Red is the life of the party. But what–other than socks and laundry–is Boober good for?

I have a special place in my heart for books that force kids to do a little soul searching. What exactly is it that makes YOU unique? Because you are, you know. Unique and special and awesome. Just like Boober.

[Edit: Apparently, I'm not the only one who's realized this. But it's Wembley pictured here, not Boober.]

Originally published at AletheaKontis.com. You can comment here or there.

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