6 Books I Loved in Childhood

¡Hola amigos!

Yesterday's post was full of thoughtful details for parents who want to know how to limit their kids' reading; it took me a long time to write -- I spread it out over three days. So today I want to do something quick and easy!

When I asked for ideas of things to post about, a couple friends wanted to hear about what books I enjoyed in my childhood. When I was a kid I saw an episode of Sesame Street where Bert talks about how nobody's favorite number is 6, but it's his favorite (ah! here it is.) I decided 6 was my favorite number, too. So let's have 6 favorite books from my childhood.

My Great Aunt Arizona by Gloria Houston -- I would like to own a copy of this book. Something about the red-headed Arizona captured my imagination. Maybe it was that I lived in Arizona. Maybe it was that I grew up hearing stories about my ancestors from my dad. Maybe it was that she sat reading on the front steps. Maybe it was that she had red hair, like some of my lucky cousins. Anyway, it's a beautiful book.

we're being lazy remember?
so this is the only book I'm linking to.
it's a beauty.

Pickle Things by Marc Brown -- Everybody knows Marc Brown for Arthur, of course, but I love Pickle Things. It's out of print, so it's ridiculously expensive online. It's great though. "Pickle things you never see, like pickles on a Christmas tree. . . . You never hear a pickle sing, or see a pickle leave a ring." It rhymes, it's silly, and it's brilliantly illustrated. What more could a child want?

Swan Lake by Mark Helprin, illustrated by Chris Van Allsburg -- Speaking of awesome books that are out of print, this one is a favorite of mine. I remember my parents reading it aloud to us kids and I remember it being amazing and sad and incomprehensible and so romantic. Rereading it as a teen and as an adult has been a great delight.

A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett -- Speaking of books I reread as an adult, A Little Princess was awesome to reread. I remembered loving it as a child, and watching the movie and thinking the movie was very different from the book. When I picked it up again after I had kids of my own I loved it all over again, and even found myself feeling sorry for Miss Minchin, something I never did in childhood!

Sleeping Beauty by Mercer Mayer -- Oh man, I remember poring over these illustrations for a long, long time. Again, Mercer Mayer is best known for the Little Critter books, but this fairy tale retelling is what captured my imagination. It's been years since I've seen a copy.

Animalia by Graeme Base -- I used to look at these illustrations for hours, too! I'm lucky enough to own a copy of this one, and have shared it with my kids. It goes through each letter of the alphabet, with a rhyme and a ridiculously detailed scene which features innumberable objects that start with that letter. It's kind of like an I Spy book, except less stressful. (I could never find all the things on the I Spy list, you know? But finding everything in these rhymes isn't too hard, and then going above and beyond and finding more and more was just so enjoyable).

What were some of your favorite books in childhood? Of course I've barely scratched the surface of my own childhood, here. I loved The Babysitters Club and Nancy Drew and Madeline L'Engle and so many more.


  1. Pickle up, pickle down, juggled by a pickle clown. Alarming, the things one remembers. This was in one of those books by mail clubs, and my daughters loved it, too.

  2. "You never ride your pickle bike down pickle street or pickle pike."
    Oh man, I wonder if I still have My Great Aunt Arizona out in the garage somewhere or if I gave it away.
    I have some mental pictures of you reading and these favorites bring those to mind. =D You loved reading The Friend magazine, too.


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