"The world is so full of a number of things, I'm sure we should all be as happy as kings."
With this "Happy Thought," Robert Louis Stevenson speaks for all the delights of childhood. But he doesn't stop there. A Child's Garden of Verses, written over a century ago, is filled to the brim with what are usually considered to be the first real poems written for children. This classic volume is an old friend to the generations of readers who were brought up on "I have a little shadow that goes in and out with me/ And what can be the use of him is more than I can see." In this perfectly lovely edition, the gossamer art of Jessie Willcox Smith (who first illustrated Stevenson's poems in the early years of the 20th century) is reproduced in all its charming glory. Black and white drawings throughout and eight full-page, warmly colorful paintings show beautiful, yet pleasantly imperfect children, busy at their daily activities--climbing trees, watching their reflections in a river, or sick in bed with an army of toy soldiers on guard. Place this on the shelf next to Mother Goose, Dr. Seuss, and Peter Rabbit. (All ages) --Emilie Coulter