Bibliophiliac is the space where one passionate, voracious reader reflects on books and the reading life. You will find reviews, analysis, links, and reflections on poetry and prose both in and out of the mainstream.

A book must be the axe for the frozen sea within us. Franz Kafka

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Top Ten Tuesday: Childhood Favorites

Top Ten Tuesday is a bookish meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.
I love a good list. This week's topic from the folks at The Broke and the Bookish makes me wax nostalgic: when I first fell in love with books, with reading, with the instant escape to other worlds. I was the child who would hide under the dining room table, beneath a desk, or anywhere else I could find to become lost in a book. I longed for a window seat with a soft red cushion and curtains I could hide behind. When my mother found me with my nose in a book she would force me to go outside--whereupon I would take my book up into the higher branches of some tree, and read undisturbed (while getting the "fresh air" my mother believed in).

Here are just ten of the books I remember finding magical.

1. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis. How I wished I had a wardrobe that opened onto another land.
2. Tales of Hans Christian Anderson, illustrated by Arthur Rackham. This was a beautiful old book that once belonged to my father. If you haven't seen Arthur Rackham's exquisite illustrations, you need to seek them out.
3. Black Beauty by Anna Sewell.
4. The Princess and the Goblins by George MacDonald.
5. The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner. I devoured every book in this series.
6. Nancy Drew and the....Carolyn Keene. Nancy had Titian hair, whatever that was. She had a blue roadster, a housekeeper, and a father who seemed awfully genial and lenient. I read the Nancy Drew mysteries one after the other. When I ran out of those I would borrow my brother's Hardy Boys.
7. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle.
8. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. I know, I was precocious.
9. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell. I read and loved this book at age eleven, too young to question some of the more romantic premises of the novel.
10. A Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton Porter. I don't remember much about this book except that I loved, loved, loved it.

These are the books that first come to mind when I think about my childhood favorites, but there were more than I could list. Then when I became a parent, I got to experience some of those same books all over again. My daughters loved books the way I did, and I remember a few of their favorites: Caddie Woodlawn, Little House on the Prairie, and many more. Some day I'll be reading these favorites to their children...

Do you remember being enthralled by books as a child? What were your favorites?


bermudaonion said...

I didn't read Gone with the Wind until I was an adult. One book from childhood that really sticks with me is Mrs. Piggle Wiggle.

LBC said...

My grandparents had an entire shelf of Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew on a shelf in their garage. In fact, now I'm wondering what happened to all those books, because I loved them.

I hope you come visit me at The Scarlet Letter.

Madigan Mirza said...

Great list! I had a lot of these on my list too.

I've never read The Princess and the Goblin - I've always meant to.

Sarah at SmallWorld said...

Definitely some duplicates on my list! I love that you listed The Princess and the Goblin. I loved this and read it to my kiddos last year.

ImageNations said...

It's good to remind yourself of books you used to enjoy and how you relate to it now. Has perspectives change? etc.

Rummanah Aasi said...

YAY for Nancy Drew! I was her for Halloween and it seemed that only the adults got my costume. LOL! I didn't care for The Boxcar Children. Lot of eye rolling involved. :)

Betty said...

I recently read Girl of the Limberlost for the first time. I thought it held up very well. My favorite childhood read was Charlotte's Web. Some pig. And of course I read every Nancy Drew in the library. When I ran out, I graduated to Perry Mason.

bibliophiliac said...

@bermudaonion-I think I remember that book too!
@LBC-my grandparents had lots of books too-one of the reasons I loved to visit them.
@Madigan-I don't know why, but I just loved the MacDonald book. Maybe all those underground tunnels and secret rooms.
@smallworld-I'm glad kids are still reading and loving some of my old faves.
@Nana=good question! I'm certainly not the same person who fell in love with those books, but at the same time those books formed me in a way.
@Rummanah-I'd love to see the Nancy Drew costume!
@Betty-why didn't I think of Charlotte's Web? Another beautiful book.

Admin said...

Enid Blyton for me. I had a book of the Brothers Grimm but I wasn't allowed to read it.