kids book: the flying hockey stick

the flying hockey stick

For my 5th birthday, two weeks into Kindergarten, my best friend Douggie gave me what was to become my most treasured book ever:  The Flying Hockey Stick.

lion book

The illustrations are marvelous, of course, but it’s the cheeky humor that got me.  Jolly Roger Bradfield, the author, really had a way with words.  I’d always assumed he was British, mainly because Douggie’s mom was British and I figured I was special enough that she brought it back for my birthday from one of her trips to London.

Turns out, Jolly Roger Bradfield was from Minnesota. 

A girl can dream.

extension cords

My father read The Flying Hockey stick every night at bedtime, only I called it “The Flying Hocking Stick”.  Is there better adventure than an upturned umbrella, a bag of peanut butter sandwiches & a pickle, and a neighborhood’s worth of extension cords?

I think not.

fly fish

In fact, I think the Flying Hockey Stick ignited in me a love of travel really early on.  I had no idea flying fish even existed before I committed this book to heart, and when I finally did see real live flying fish at Catalina Island a couple years ago, it was almost more than I could take.


book binding

The only problem, of course, was that we read the book enough to well and truly destroy it.  The back binding broke sometime around the third grade, and I safeguarded the book from my siblings {there were 8 of us} so I could pass it on in adulthood to my own children.

The first time I read it to my own kids was pretty special.  They both adore it as much as I do, but I haven’t read it to them as much as I’d like in fear of well and truly destroying it.  But I just discovered that there were a whole bunch of re-printings of this book, in addition to a whole slew of other Jolly Roger adventures, hooray!

If you’re building a library for your kiddos, you want this one on board, I guarantee it.

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Hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. I do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, home remodel projects, and cool DIY crafts you totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!


  1. erin :

    Allison, I do bookbinding. I could fix it for you just out of the sheer love of books.

    • Petit Elefant :

      Erin, stop it. Are you serious?

  2. Paula/adhocmom :

    I love finding books from my youth. I love a series called Dorothy the witch. Unfortunately, so do loads other people, they are like a bjillion dollars used! I’m always on the lookout though. I can’t wait until my daughter is old enough to read them.

    • Petit Elefant :

      Paula, this thing has traveled with me near and far and I love it so much it hurts.

      Those books are pretty precious, aren’t they?

  3. allison :

    this book looks adorable! i wish i had saved more books from my youth. i think i sometimes buy books for my kids thinking they we keep them and pass them on…

    • Allison :

      I only have a handful and I wish it were more. I have no idea what I’ll do with all the books I’ve accumulated for them though!

  4. erin :

    Totally. Email me!

  5. Nancy :

    My favorite book when I was little was Jolly Roger Bradfield’s Pickle-Chiffon Pie. I made my dad read it to me over and over and over and over again. It is still in tact, but I have a lot of other favorites falling apart from loving them so much.

    • Allison :

      Oh, that makes my heart happy. I had no idea that book existed until I looked up Flying Hockey Stick on Amazon. The Pickle book is next on my list of purchases. I LOVE Jolly Roger.

  6. Anna-Lisa (The Sister) :

    Best. Book. Ever.