Mother West Wind Where Stories (Illustrated) by Thornton W. Burgess

Mother West Wind Where Stories (Illustrated)

byThornton W. Burgess, Harrison Cady, Illustrator

Kobo ebook | March 12, 2016

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In Mother West Wind "Where" Stories, Thornton Burgess writes about talking animals, but his characters remain true to their real-life counterparts. Each story explains how Old Mother Nature gives special attention to each creature's needs -- where Grandfather Frog got his big mouth, for example, and where Mr. Quack the duck got his webbed feet. Burgess sets his tales "when the world was young," back when Peter Rabbit's "great-great-ever-so-great grandfather" was a young hopper, and Old Mother Nature still had some work to do on basic designs. She sees that a duck needs webbed feet to swim, and a prairie dog needs a burrow designed to keep dry. Burgess's animals are proud of their unique features and abilities, but the real voice of enthusiasm is the author's own, sharing the delights he found in the woods of New England. Typical of the book's charm is the story of where "Dippy the loon got the name of being crazy." The bird is smarter than he looks -- and that's how Dippy always gets the last laugh.

This edition of the book contains the four original, rejuvenated illustrations by Harrison Cade, and seven subject-relevant ones unique to this edition.

Thornton Waldo Burgess (January 14, 1874 – June 5, 1965) was a conservationist and author of children's stories. Burgess loved the beauty of nature and its living creatures so much that he wrote about them for 50 years in books and his newspaper column, "Bedtime Stories". He was sometimes known as the Bedtime Story-Man. By the time he retired, he had written more than 170 books and 15,000 stories for the daily newspaper column.

Born in Sandwich, Massachusetts, Burgess was the son of Caroline F. Haywood and Thornton W. Burgess Sr., a direct descendant of Thomas Burgess, one of the first Sandwich settlers in 1637. Thornton W. Burgess, Sr., died the same year his son was born, and the young Thornton Burgess was brought up by his mother in Sandwich. They both lived in humble circumstances with relatives or paying rent. As a youth, he worked year round in order to earn money. Some of his jobs included tending cows, picking trailing arbutus or berries, shipping water lilies from local ponds, selling candy and trapping muskrats. William C. Chipman, one of his employers, lived on Discovery Hill Road, a wildlife habitat of woodland and wetland. This habitat became the setting of many stories in which Burgess refers to Smiling Pool and the Old Briar Patch.

Graduating from Sandwich High School in 1891, Burgess briefly attended a business college in Boston from 1892 to 1893, living in Somerville, Massachusetts, at that time. But he disliked studying business and wanted to write. He moved to Springfield, Massachusetts, where he took a job as an editorial assistant at the Phelps Publishing Company. His first stories were written under the pen name W. B. Thornton.

Burgess married Nina Osborne in 1905, but she died only a year later, leaving him to raise their son alone. It is said that he began writing bedtime stories to entertain his young son, Thornton III. Burgess remarried in 1911; his wife Fannie had two children by a previous marriage. The couple later bought a home in Hampden, Massachusetts, in 1925 that became Burgess' permanent residence in 1957. His second wife died in August 1950. Burgess returned frequently to Sandwich, which he always claimed as his birthplace and spiritual home.

In 1960, Burgess published his last book, "Now I Remember, Autobiography of an Amateur Naturalist," depicting memories of his early life in Sandwich, as well as his career highlights. That same year, Burgess, at the age of 86, had published his 15,000th story. He died on June 5, 1965, at the age of 91.

Title:Mother West Wind Where Stories (Illustrated)Format:Kobo ebookPublished:March 12, 2016Publisher:Steve GabanyLanguage:English

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