Some of the books we read as children stay with us our whole lives. Here are some of the ones from my younger years that have never left me:
Flossie and Bossie by Eva Gallienne
Maybe it was the barnyard theme of this book that appealed to me so much. Flossie and Bossie are chickens, and Bossie is just as mean and haughty as you’d expect her to be with a name like that. Poor Flossie takes her abuse and doesn’t hold it against her, even saving her chicks when maybe other, lesser chickens wouldn’t have been so nice. I loved this book. Plus, it taught me the difference between a Bantam and a Rhode Island Red.
The Betsy-Tacy series by Maud Hart Lovelace
Betsy, Tacy, and Tib fascinated me, and not just because two out of the three of them had weird names. The girls were fearless, adventurous, and lived in a time when history was happening every day. I read and reread the whole series. Plus, it taught me what a pompadour was and set me up for disappointment when none of the boys I dated lived up to the unrealistic example Betsy’s boyfriend Joe set.
A Summer in the South by James Marshall
Again, blame it on the farm girl thing, but I loved anthropomorphic animal books growing up. I wanted to believe cats could talk and squirrels went furry-dipping. This book was a mystery set at a southern hotel with cats, chickens, pigs, owls, geese, and more. Though I couldn’t get the cats and pigs on our farm to play instruments and wear clothes, it gave me hope that it was possible. Also, this book was hilarious.
Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein
I’m not one for poetry, but hands down, Shel Silverstein is my favorite poet of all time. I still reread this book and A Light in the Attic on occasion. I do find it a bit disturbing as an adult that I’ve turned into Mary Hume, copy editing documents while muttering “Almost perfect . . . but not quite.” Hey, what’s a girl to do when they don’t cross their ‘t’s just right?
The My Father’s Dragon series by Ruth Stiles Gannett
Sure, we had cows and pigs and turkeys and geese and cats and a horse nobody could ride on the farm, but what I really wanted was a dragon. (Or a dinosaur. I would’ve been fine with either.) I wanted to fly away to Blueland and hang out with my dragon’s peeps, have great adventures, and make it home in time for dinner. Alas, this childhood dream has yet to come true. But what I loved most about this series is that it did inspire me to dream.
What are some of your most-loved books from childhood? Leave your favorites in the comments below!