Friday, February 03, 2012

My Favorite Kids Books

Sometimes it is really weird how my thought progressions go. Ok, a lot of the time. Sometimes I just stop thinking and think, "how did I get here?" Perhaps I think too much? Or overthink? Anyway, I'm going to let you in on a little bit of my mad thinking skilz today. Bear with me.

I was at a local discount store when I spotted this book:


I told a friend, "Oh my, I have to get this book!" You see, I have many (many many) fond memories of my Grammie reading me this book as a kid. Every.single.time. I was at her house. Ask her, she'll tell ya! And even though I was little, I remember it. The above copy that I found is actually one huge board book (its about the size of a sheet of paper) and in great condition, so I knew that, if nothing else, I should get it and save it for my kids someday! So, I did. :)

I was sitting at home with the book, thinking happy thoughts about my childhood, and that got me to thinking about my new habit of reading to my sisters at each noon meal. Those thoughts caused my eyes to wander to my bookshelf, where I have lots and lots of my chapter books from when I was younger. I began looking through them and thinking about which ones I should read to my sisters, which lead me to realize I have a lot of really good books! SOOOO (are you still with me?) I decided to share with you, my lucky readers, some of my most loved chapter books for kids.

(I warned you...its a scary thing, this thinker of mine)

Let me right up front tell you that I never was a fan of so called "kids books" that took all the innocency out of childhood. Books for 9 year old girls that are all about boy/girl relationships (failing, most of the time) never appealed to me as a kid, and don't appeal to me now. So the following books get a hearty thumbs-up from me as being just what they should be - true KIDS books!



I have always loved horses, and of course Misty of Chincoteague is the ultimate fun horse story! The fun part is, the events are all true!


I have three of the books in this series, and to be honest, I have never noticed them anywhere else. They are fictional stories depicting what life was like for young girls in early American History. 



Another, more well-known series of books about American history. These are written in a diary format and are more detailed, but give such a neat picture into life "back then!"



I am sure you all are familiar with the Grandma's attic series! Some of most hysterical stories you will ever read...and they are all true! The books that detail Mabel's growing up and early-adulthood years are also a joy to read.



Did you know that Janette Oke wrote children's books? Neither did I, until my Nana bought me this one! Each of them is based on the life of a certain kind of animal - this one happens to be a lamb - written from the animal's point of view! Very fun, simple writing style gives you a  neat perspective into what the animal's might be "thinking" if indeed they could! I loved this series!



I read every.single.one. of the Nancy Drew books when I was a teen. Granted, after a while they cease to be exciting (since every plot is basically the same!) but they are clean and my local library had them, so that is what I read. Even though now they would seem like a bore, they are fascinating to a younger person who aspires to solve mysteries! (I was forever looking for hidden rooms in my house, and I blame the influence of these books!) =)



I believe this was the best series I ever read. "Adventures in the Northwoods" chronicles the life of 13-year-old Kate. Based back in the 1800's (if I remember correctly) Kate leaves her city home with her mother and has to adjust to life in "the sticks!" These books are full of interesting historical facts as well as Biblical lessons. I can honestly say these helped mold my spiritual life in my pre-teen years!



This is another book that I have never seen anywhere else and I do not know of anyone else that has read it, but it is a GEM! It is the story of White Ruff, a collie dog that is stolen from his farm and the boy that loves him. He manages to escape from his captors and spends the rest of the book trying to get back to his master. His route leads him into all sorts of excitement, including hitchhiking, and ends him up in a circus act! You'll have to read it to find out how it ends! Told from the dog's perspective, but not in a fairy tale way (as in, the dog doesn't "talk" if you know what I mean) it is an extremely interesting book for young and old alike!

I am sure there are many more I could have mentioned, but those are the ones that stood out to me the most, and the ones that I am sure we will be reading this year! I've posted this list a little late for Christmas, but I know that any of these books would make great gifts for the young people in your life.

What books did you enjoy reading as a kid? What books do your kids enjoy reading now? What is your perspective of the so-called "kids books" that seem to be so popular?


2 comments:

  1. oh. my. goodness- The Saggy Baggy Elephant! I used to LOVE that book! Like you- I am a huge fan of 'real' children's books. (and secret confession...in high school, one of the things I liked most about babysitting was reading the children's books- I think I might have enjoyed some of them more than the kids I was reading too!). There's something about the illustrations that just draws me in :)

    You definitely listed some of my favorites. I read all the Grandma's Attic books, the Janette Oke books, Nancy Drew (and the Hardy boys ;) ), and the Northwoods books.

    And that got me thinking about some of my other favorite series from childhood...

    Did you ever read the Mandie series? How about the American Girl series? When I was in elementary school I also LOVED the Boxcar children books. Anne of Green Gables and all the rest of the series were favorites, as well as A Little Princess and The Secret Garden.

    Now I'm going to be thinking about this all day! It's so fun to reminisce about things like this, isn't it?! And you're never too old to go back and read them again ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I do own many of the Mandy books, American Girls, and 30+ of the Boxcar children! My 12 year old sister just started reading the Boxcar children lately and she can't put them down. I warned her..... :)

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