a reading rainbow


Yesterday’s post sparked a couple of questions about what books I read as a child and whether I have re-read any of them as an adult. So today’s story is about reading.

The first book that I can remember reading is The Night Before Christmas. I probably simply had it memorized, I was three and a half. But from the Night Before Christmas to other books was a short step. My parents always read to me and my brothers. I expect I listened to stories being read to the boys while I was still cozy in my mother’s tummy.

They enrolled me in a book club as early as I can remember. I think it was part of Doubleday as a matter of fact and the books grew in complexity as I grew older. Looking back, this was really a delightful way of introducing me to different books. A few years ago, I sent copies of a couple of those books, How Fletcher was Hatched and Miss Twiggley’s Tree House to one of my favorite young men. Oh! And Boy Was I Mad! All books that left an impression on my young self. Of course I re-read them. I still love them, especially Miss Twiggley’s Tree House. My young friend was excited last summer to actually visit Miss Twiggley’s Tree House. If his mother drops by perhaps she can give us a link because I can’t seem to find it online.

I think I lived in the library. From our local public library which was located in the Antioch Mall beneath Kroger’s Grocery. I took out as many books as I could carry as often as I could get there – which was usually once per week. And then the school library. And the next. And when I move one of the first things I do is get a new library card.

What did I read? That’s so hard, I know I will forget important books. Of course I read the Nancy Drew books and the Hardy Boys and Bobsy Twins. I owned the corner of the library where The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe lived and yes, I re-read that recently. I also got the rest of the books in that series and decided there’s a reason why no one has ever heard of them. Some of my favorites were Anne of Green Gables and a Wrinkle in Time, like our friend Margaret. I also recently re-read those, partly because it had it’s 50th anniversary a few years ago. It remains an excellent read.

Let’s see, a couple of other books I’ve re-read in the past few years are Island of the Blue Dolphins and The Search for Delicious. And in my personal collection there is A Walk Out of the World. I’ve re-read it many times, it’s a great story.

Dear friends, what did you love to read as a child? What stuck with you? There are so many books I just can’t name them all.


8 thoughts on “a reading rainbow”

  1. When I was a kid I would read pretty much anything once.. but my favourites were read over and over and over again.

    At around age 16, I started reading non fiction and in particular true crime. There was an incident that has stuck with me and it changed me quite a bit, not in a good way. Around 2am in the morning I was reading about a murder in Victorian times, and when I got to the middle of the book I turned the page to be confronted with ye olde worldy photograph taken of the murder victim. It was a truly terrible image and I can still mentally recall it today.. I will not describe it but I absolutely could, in way too much detail!

    After a night of no sleep, I took the book back to the library to mention, perhaps they ought to consider putting a warning in at the front of the book. The librarian was totally unsympathetic even when shown the image and I had to kick up a real stink to get a warning put in that book.

    Ever since then, I have been wary of books with images and will give them to someone else to check over before I will read them. Of course now with the e-reader that is a lot harder than looking at the book pages and seeing the photo section. Thankfully my ebook reader somehow puts images right at the end of the book. Plus, no true crime at “dark time” – only in daylight hours.

    That one incident right there put me off many career paths I was considering – just the year before I had done work experience in the office of the medical examiner! I also crossed off funeral director, doctor, nurse, and paramedic even though I was deeply involved in ambulance cadets as a teenager. I thought I was too squeamish to do those things. It was not until years later via a TV show here called RPA which shows actual surgery that I discovered I was not actually so squeamish and maybe I could have followed those career paths after all.

    Sometimes reading can be bad! 🙂 With that said though, I would only un-read that one book. Maybe I could have had an awesome career in those fields if I had just left that one book on the shelf. 🙂


    1. I used to think I wanted to be a forensic pathologist. While I think I would have been okay with “normal” dead bodies – I think the various states of decomposition would have done me in. I didn’t need a gross picture, just my very active imagination.


  2. I had lots of hand-me-down books, so I read what my mother and her sisters had read: Bobbsey Twins & Beatrix Potter books. I also read, from the library, all the Little House on the Prairie books. Friends seemed to give me Nancy Drew books for gifts, so I read [and adored] those books. Plus I remember lots of assorted biographies, but no one in particular stands out.


    1. Of course, all the Little House books! I got many hand me downs from our neighbor’s children, too. I wish I had seen the Beatrix Potter books, other than Peter Rabbit, when I was younger. She led an interesting life.


  3. The books that go farthest back for me are “Harold and His Purple Crayon” and “Where the Wild Things Are.” I might’ve re-read the latter as an adult to my daughter.

    I actually did read a couple of my sister’s Nancy Drew books and my brother’s Hardy Boys. But I was a fanatic over “The Tom Swift Jr. Adventure Series.” I re-read them (the series) a couple of times.


    1. Didn’t they make a little movie about Harold and his purple crayon? I ran into those stories later in life – but still good stories. I haven’t read Tom Swift. Hmmm.


  4. When I was very little, my poor Dad had to read Mike Mulligan and his steam shovel to me about 1,000 times. I loved that story! In my day, there was no Y/A lit, we read the classics. Little Women was another one of my favorites.


    1. I remember Mike and his steam shovel! Little Women, of course, though I hated that Beth died. In some ways, Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys were the Harry Potter of our day. Sort of.


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