Purpose of this Blog...

You may have noticed that not all books are equal in capturing children's imaginations and in cultivating those innocent, tender souls. My goal is to help you find the ones that do!
(Painting by Mary Cassatt: "Mrs Cassatt Reading to her Grandchildren" -1888)

Thursday, November 10, 2011


THE HOUSE OF SIXTY FATHERS, by Meindert DeJong, illustrated by Maurice Sendak, is based on the author's own experiences while growing up in China during World War II.  DeJong's story tells of young Chinese boy named Tien Pao, who is separated from his family after the Japanese attack his village.

Tien Pao's family flees upriver in an abandoned sampan to the town of Hengyang. Tien Pao's attempts to be reunited with them result in some frightening adventures... he must travel over high mountains (and consequently through dangerous Japanese occupied territory) while trying to reach Hengyang.  He refuses to despair as he determinedly holds onto his pet pig, "Glory of the Republic", throughout his long ordeal.

He comes upon an injured American pilot and helps the man return to his unit. The pilot is a member of the Flying Tigers, and the sixty U.S. airmen in the unit become the "sixty fathers" who care for Tien Pao. You'll have to get the book to find out how Tien Pao is finally reunited with his family.

War takes its greatest toll on children, yet children can react to terrifying and dismal situations with great courage - as your children will learn from this amazing story. Books like this also help kids realize the honor and respect due to the brave men and women who have put themselves in harm's way for our protection.
Listening level - ages 8 and up.  This book is a Newbury Honor winner (1957)


  1. Thanks for sharing...looks like a good book...and an old one. I hope our library has it. My husband is a veteran...Iraq in 2003 and 2005.

  2. I didn't know that - tell him thank you from me. Blessings and Happy Veterans Day. :)

  3. Thanks for bringing this book to my attention! We loved The Wheel on the School, so I'll have to track this one down.