Welcome to Day #2 of the My Life In Books Challenge! Today I’m going to be looking at 5 books that summarise my life as a Child! This was the period of my life where I really got into reading and so many amazing books were released around the same time.
In 5th place is: The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
Originally published in 1911, The Secret Garden is a classic children’s novel about Mary Lennox, who moves to a mysterious house in the Yorkshire moors and makes a variety of discoveries – one of which is a secret garden. At the time, I really loved the descriptions of the plants and animals, although I found the transcribed Yorkshire accent a bit tricky to understand in places (despite being a Yorkshire lass myself).
I never liked Mary or Colin – I still think they are whiny little brats, and my favourite character was always the maid, Martha. Overall though, it’s a nice children’s story and I still watch the various film adaptations you can see on the television.
In 4th place is: The Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett
The Little Princess is another classic children’s novel (by the same author) about Sara, who is sent to a boarding school. She goes through some unfortunate circumstances and her family fortune dwindles. She struggles to settle in and is treated badly because of her previous social status – particularly by Miss Minchin. I enjoyed this story a lot as a child for all the obvious reasons – the protagonist was a girl, there were multiple descriptions of pretty dresses and dolls and there were also adventures to be had too.
In 3rd place is: The Goosebumps Series by R. L. Stine
Thanks to Goosebumps, I really started enjoying scary stories. They were short, and had a variety of different themes – aliens/ghosts/monsters/blood – and they weren’t too gruesome for children. The style of writing and pattern of the narratives could be quite repetitive however, and I wouldn’t re-read them today.
The stories have been adapted into a film, but from the looks of the 2015 trailer, I think it’s quite a disappointment. You can watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Cn716jv61s.
I liked the bright vivid covers given to each book though. These books also spurred me on to read The Forbidden Game series, which I’ve mentioned before in my Book Cover Lover Challenge, so I’m glad they were a part of my childhood!
In 2nd place is: The Story of Tracy Beaker by Jacqueline Wilson
This was the first Jacqueline Wilson book I ever read, and I certainly did not look back! I really identified with Tracy, the notorious, rebellious chatterbox and troublemaker of the Foster Home. I also shared her love of McDonald’s, which was a rare treat as a child! I think, for UK children at least, Tracy Beaker is one of the most memorable children’s characters in the last decade or so. CBBC even adapted the books and made a TV series for children, which I was an avid fan of. I’ve loved Jacqueline Wilson’s stories ever since and I think The Story of Tracy Beaker is a worthy 2nd place.
In 1st place is: The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
I’m sure this choice was obvious. J.K. Rowling is a genius! The magical world of Harry Potter – the characters, the settings, the narrative and the moral undertones throughout all 7 books were completely different to anything else out there.
I haven’t re-read the series in quite a while, but even as I’m writing this post, I’m drawn to re-reading them! My favourite books are The Philosopher’s Stone (#1) because it “kicks off” the start of an amazing magical journey and The Deathly Hallows (#7) because it is the biggest, scariest, and most “real” of all the books. Harry and his friends face huge moral decisions, we see the devastating impact of death, and there are themes like war, evil, and even the afterlife. I loved all the films too, and they truly bring to life the wonderful stories.
And there we have it! Day #2 of the My Life In Books Challenge. If you’ll excuse me, I’m off to read the entire Harry Potter series. Leave me some lovely comments below! Would you have ranked those books differently? What was your favourite book as a child?
Stay tuned for Day #3!