Hello, all. Do you have children or grandchildren involved in the summer reading program at their local library? Our Heights Branch is very busy with programs for all ages, babies to teens. In fact, the teens have a separate zone to hang out in completely away from the regular children's section. Watching all the activity when I was in to pick up some holds reminded me of all the summer days spent reading when in my childhood (shortly after the earth's crust began to harden). Some of those were such favorites I either still have them or have sought them out in recent years.
There are probably plenty of you who remember Ballet Shoes, by Noel Streatfeild:
She wrote many others in the series, all with shoes in the titles for the US market. Skating Shoes is excellent.
Authors who wrote many books were among my favorites, like Edward Eager.
Half Magic was there first, but there are many excellent sequels; all are fun and engaging.
Betty MacDonald of The Egg and I fame wrote wonderful children's books many people still recall fondly, featuring the character Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle, who had magical cures for misbehavior.
Most children like animals, so it's not surprising Doctor Doolittle was a hit:.
I especially enjoyed later volumes in the series like Doctor Doolittle and the Green Canary and Doctor Doolittle in the Moon.
In another post I mentioned the Betsy-Tacy series by Maud Hart Lovelace; another one nearly as dear to my heart was set in Denver, by Lenora Mattingly Weber.
Featuring the lovable Malone family, the series begins during WWII and continues till after Beany is married with a family of her own.
With fewer entries, another family you want to join can be found starting here:
Although there are plenty of adventures and fun in the subsequent volumes, this was always my favorite. Why anyone would want to move away from a house with a trapeze inside and a tub full of clay is a mystery to me.
A friend told me about fifteen years ago about a series by a British author, Helen Cresswell that is a hoot, too.
This is the second title, but my favorite when the eccentric Bagthorpe family go into a frenzy of entering contests and trying to outdo one another.
After years of searching I've found exactly one of the Dean Marshall books well recalled from childhood. Maybe the others will turn up one of these days.
There are plenty of other books that were one offs, or nearly so that I read and re-read often as well.
The Chestry Oak was exciting, about a refugee boy from Hungary after WWII.
Daddy-Long-Legs by Jean Webster had one sequel, but it didn't feature Jerusha, so it seemed more a separate book to me.
Jessamyn West wrote a number of books for adults, but I glommed onto this one early and re-read it many times:
Last, but not least, a book I loved and checked out of the library dozens of times:
My copy was found at a yard sale and given to me as a birthday gift by a friend. There was one sequel to it, but I've never seen it anywhere.
Not mentioned in this post are the Anne of Green Gables books, not because I didn't like or read them, but rather, I don't remember where in the house mine are and was too lazy to rummage around to find them.
What childhood favorites would you like to pass along? Do you ever re-read those most special ones? Have you recommended the best beloved to friends and relatives?In the age of technology, are books destined to become extinct, like dinosaurs? Horrors, what a terrible thought! I hope not.