I’m stealing just one question from Ally’s Meme this week.
What books were your childhood favorites?
I have loved books for as long as I can remember. I think my mom probably read to me before I was born. I have this vague memory which probably isn’t a memory of learning to read – I think it’s just my brain trying to make sense of the facts as I know them. But memory notwithstanding, I do know I was reading on my own by 3 1/2. I couldn’t read out loud to save my life and that’s something I still hate to do.
The library was a place of wonder for me. I maxed out every summer reading program – I think until high school when it probably wasn’t cool to be in the summer reading program. I lived at the school library, however, even then. The first thing I do after finding the grocery store in a new town is to find the library.
What I’m saying is – I love books. I love reading. I’ve never not been a reader and I honestly don’t understand people who don’t read for pleasure.
I’ve recently re-read a couple of my favorite books from childhood, ostensibly because I am considering sending them to a young friend of mine. It was a good excuse to buy them at any rate.
Island of the Blue Dolphins is certainly in my top five books from childhood. Depending on when you ask me, it may be number one. Sometimes when you re-read an old favorite, it disappoints. Not so Island of the Blue Dolphins. It’s been so long since I read it that I only remembered the general storyline and it re-captured my imagination and desire to know what happened next. I used to pretend to be Karana, alone on that island and fighting to survive. That’s something I love, too, by the way – crawling into my favorite books and making them real in my mind.
The Search for Delicious was possibly my first encounter with the fantasy genre. I mean, outside of fairytales, this was my first epic story of adventure. And still today, when people around me start arguing about what the most delicious thing in the world is – I think that it must be a drink of cool water when you’re very, very thirsty.
I have re-read A Walk Out of the World many times, even as an adult. It might, I suppose, be consider Tolkien-lite. Another fantasy adventure story of a different world, but this one you get to enter as a person living in the today-world. Oh how I wanted to walk through the woods near my home to find her world and meet the lake people myself.
A Wrinkle in Time makes me think that I must have particularly loved escapist fiction. It’s another story where we find ourselves inexplicably transported to another reality. And in pulling up the link for this post, I discovered that it’s actually a series – what? I’ve never read the rest of the books and perhaps I need to do that.
Okay, so it’s not surprising that The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe rounds out my list of favorite books from childhood. I borrowed this so many times from the library that I’m amazed that I never read the rest of the chronicles of Narnia. I haven’t read this one as an adult – but I saw the movie. The story holds up well so I guess I will have to read the rest of the books.
And I’m going to tack on Charlotte’s Web since it popped up while I was looking up links for this post. I loathe spiders but I loved Charlotte – and I guess I would have had to make friends with the spider in order to save poor Wilbur.
What were your favorite books from childhood? Do you still love them today?