Monday, March 23, 2015

Top Ten Books From My Childhood That I Would Love To Revisit

I'm linking up with The Broke and the Bookish for another Top Ten Tuesday.

This week's topic is books from my childhood I want to revisit. A few of the books on my list of books I want to reread are books from childhood, but now that we have a kid the day is just around the corner when it will be time to revisit many of my childhood books. I've picked out some that I look forward to reading again.

1. The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner
I loved the Boxcar Children mysteries growing up, but I always thought the first one (which doesn't have any mystery) was kind of boring. I reread it to my sister when she was little but I don't think we ever finished it. I remember reading something recently by someone who revisited this book with their kid and ended up having a whole conversation about how the children conform to traditional gender roles even when they're on their own. I would be interested to reread this now and see what I think.

2. Encyclopedia Brown, Boy Detective by Donald J. Sobol
I've loved mysteries for almost as long as I could read, and the Encyclopedia Brown books were some of the chapter books that got me hooked (along with the Boxcar Children mysteries and the Babysitter's Club mysteries). I still remember some of the clues that gave away the culprits, including a few that I thought were pretty flimsy at the time and still think aren't very compelling. I wonder if these would hold up for an adult reader.

3. From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg
This was one of the ones I mentioned wanting to reread because I remember liking it — and I know a lot of people like it — but I remember so little about it.

4. Mr. Popper's Penguins by Richard Atwater
I read this in school — maybe fifth grade? — and don't remember particularly liking it, but it's been popular for a long time and made into a movie by now, so I would reread it with my kids to see what makes it a classic.

5. Muggie Maggie by Beverly Cleary
This was one of my favorite Beverly Cleary books, so I was surprised to find that the reviews of it aren't great. A lot of people say that kids who can't read cursive will miss out on important parts of the story, and by the time they can they'll have outgrown the story. Maybe I liked it because I could read at a younger age than most, so my comprehension and age happened to be in the right spot. Now that a lot of schools are abandoning cursive, I'd be interested to see how the story holds up.

6. Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren
This is another book that I'm pretty sure I liked, and I know a lot of people like, but I remember very little of it. I'm sure it's a classic for a reason, so I'd love to reread it.

7. Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Louis Sachar
I adored this series growing up, but when I think back on some of the stories I'm surprised how much I liked it because it doesn't seem like my kind of humor, so I think it was the writing and the wordplay. (I love wordplay... The Phantom Tollbooth is one of my favorite books of all time.) I flipped through this book recently while rereading Catch-22 because I think the tone is similar (one a satire of the bureaucracy of war and the other a satire of the bureaucracy of school) and was reminded of some of the clever stories. I want to reread this series with my kids to see if they like it as much as I did.

8. Summer of My German Soldier by Bette Greene
Another planned reread because of how much I loved this when I was younger.

9. The Trumpet of the Swan by E.B. White
I remember almost nothing about this book except for the part where the swan's webbing gets sliced so that he can operate the keys on his trumpet, which was and remains a horrifying image. I presume the rest of the book is great, but I would have to reread it to remember why.

10. The Twits by Roald Dahl
Roald Dahl's stuff is pretty dark generally, but this one, if I remember correctly, is basically about a husband and wife doing horrible things to each other. I seem to remember liking it as a kid, but I wonder if I would have a different perspective reading it now as a parent and deciding if/when it was appropriate for my kids to read.

What books from your childhood would you like to revisit?

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  1. Erica @ Read It. Note It.March 23, 2015 at 9:53 PM

    We loved a lot of the same books! Roald Dahl, Beverly Cleary and Sachar's Wayside Stories made my list as well. My favorite of E.B. White's was Charlotte's Web! Great picks

    Here's My List!
    Erica @ Read It. Note It.

  2. I read a lot of Roald Dahl in primary school, and I vaguely remember reading The Twits!

    Pippi Longstocking was a childhood idol though!

    My WoW

  3. I've never read The Boxcar Children before. I don't think it's too late to read them, right? Oh, Pippi Longstocking...I used to try to do my hair like her.
    My TTT

  4. I absolutely adored Roald Dahl as a child. I love that children still really enjoy his books. :-)

  5. I wondered why I'd never heard of Muggie Maggie...turns out it was published when I was in college, so I wasn't reading kids' books myself and wasn't babysitting! I've enjoyed Beverly Cleary's books about Ramona, Henry, Otis, and Ralph S. Mouse all over again through reading them to my son, as well as many many other books.

    We recently read From the Mixed-up Files... which I had never read before, although I remember seeing it around a lot when I was young. It was pretty good but not a new favorite of mine or his.

    At this point I feel we've read almost everything from my childhood that isn't super-girly that he's ready for...but I'm looking forward to his being old enough for the Tripod trilogy by John Christopher, which so far he's certain will be too scary, although I don't think it's any scarier than Percy Jackson which he's been reading lately.

  6. OOoooo Summer of my German Soldier! I need to re-read that one too. I feel like I'd love it even more now that I'm an adult.