A Fun Book Fair Story

At one of the book fairs I just attended, a delightful girl perhaps five or six years old  stopped by my table and locked her eyes onto one of my books. I could tell that her mother was somewhere nearby but not next to her. I asked the child if she’d like to hold and look at the book. Her eyes lit up as she vigorously shook her head with a smile that could warm a cold day.

She picked up the story and slowly read it page by page. I got distracted for a moment and when I looked back, out of the corner of my eye I thought I saw the last quarter-inch of my book as it slipped into the cloth book bag that hung on her shoulder. I figured I was probably just imagining things and that she must have put the book back onto the pile on my table before leaving. I moved onto other things and forgot about it.

About an hour later a rushed up to me with a worried look on her face and the little girl in tow. The  woman explained that her daughter had indeed put the book into her bag without paying for it. The embarrassed parent explained that the two of them often went to the library, and there they would collect books, put them into their bags and when they were done take them to the checkout counter. Her little angel thought that’s how it worked at a book fair too. Her mom apologized. I laughed, told her I completely understood, and thanked her for her honesty.

The story had a happy ending. The mom bought the book, her daughter got to keep her treasure, and I got another warm memory and the knowledge that the characters in my story were in loving hands.

With Love,




About russtowne

I'm awed by the beauty of nature and the power of love and gratitude. Some of my favorite sensory experiences include waves crashing on rocky shores, waterways in ancient redwood and fern-filled forests, and rain. My wife and I have been married since 1979. We have 3 adult children and 5 grandchildren. I manage a wealth management firm that I founded in 2003. My Beloved is a Special Education teacher for Kindergartners and First Graders. I'm a published author of approximately 60 books in a variety of genres for grownups and children.
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5 Responses to A Fun Book Fair Story

  1. ksbeth says:

    that’s how much she loved your book. a happy test case and a happy ending –

  2. Mrs. P says:

    That’s when you know you have a great book…a child reads it and liked it enough to take it with her! 😁

  3. JanBeek says:

    Reminds me of the days back in central CA when we had a Bee farm and a shelf on the back porch with jars of honey. One jar was for remuneration. Take your honey and put your money in the jar. Honor system. Every now and then a jar would be missing with no money. Inevitably, within the week, the money would show up. Usually with a note of apology. There are so many good & honest people in this world!

    • russtowne says:

      I love your story, Jan. Thank you for sharing it. When any of our children seemed to be getting overwhelmed by all the negativity in much of the news media and started to think most people must be dishonest, I’d point out many ways where the world couldn’t function if the vast majority of people weren’t basically honest.

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