I’m discovering that if I look hard enough, I’m able to find dozens of wonderful children’s books that have been around for decades but I somehow missed when I was a child. The Milly-Molly-Mandy Storybook by the imaginative Joyce Lankester Brisley is one of those gems. My husband’s parents gave this book to one of our daughters for Christmas last year, and the girls and I have enjoyed it tremendously.
Millicent Margaret Amanda, dubbed Milly-Molly-Mandy for short, is a little girl who lives in a pretty little thatched-roof cottage in a village of long-ago England. Her parents, grandparents, and aunt and uncle all live in the same house, along with a charming little dog. Milly-Molly-Mandy is a cheerful, dutiful little girl who wears pink and white striped dresses and delights in the adventures of everyday life. Errands to the local shops, visits to the creek to fish, and secrets and surprises among a family who truly love one another are all opportunities for Milly-Molly-Mandy and her young friends to have fun together.
I think of this as a sunny book. There are no major troubles, no issues the family can’t solve together, no fights among dear friends. It’s a very pleasant read, enjoyable for its homespun simplicity and gentle humor. My daughters and I laughed out loud during various chapters, and every day they were eager to hear another tale about the little girl with the big name.
The illustrations, also drawn by the author, are a perfect companion to the text, showcasing simple lines and pleasant scenes. Despite the lack of color, my daughters have loved every drawing, carefully examining each one to firmly imprint it in their minds.
Boys and girls will both enjoy this collection of stories about Milly-Molly-Mandy, and my own family has placed the additional tales about this little girl on our list of books to watch for! They’re a favorite in our home and will be read again and again!