The books that shaped the way I read…

I spent a lot of time immersed in books as a child.

Frankly it often seemed the better world to occupy. I still love the smell that a new book holds, sweet like sunshine, and the way the crisp paper sounds as you turn the pages.

So when the chance came up to do this challenge – it was okay how quick can I sign up.

I am going to reread the stories that floated through my childhood, carrying me to adventure, new places, interesting people, love, acceptance, other worlds.

One a month.

I am a bit behind so later today a trip to the library will be in order to find the one I have chosen as the first on the list.

There are a lot to chose from:

  • Black Beauty – reread and reviewed February, 2012
  • Little Women – reread and reviewed April, 2012
  • Little Vic
  • Born Free – reread and reviewed the 7th of February, 2012
  • Daktari
  • Peter Pan
  • A Bear Called Paddington
  • The Secret Garden – – being read as we speak
  • Old Yeller
  • Lassie
  • The Call of the Wild
  • White Fang
  • Winnie the Pooh (anything to do with Pooh) – read and adored for the May challenge.
  • The Borrowers
  • A Child’s Garden of Verses
  • Treasure Island – being read as we speak
  • Sherlock Holmes
  • The Three Musketeers
  • Kim
  • Rebecca – reread and reviewed 14th March, 2012
  • Mutiny on the Bounty – – being read as we speak
  • The Yearling
  • The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
  • Around the World in Eighty Days
  • Wuthering Heights – – being read as we speak
  • A Wizard of Earthsea
  • The Swiss Family Robinson
  • Charlotte’s Web – – being read as we speak
  • The Jungle Book – – being read as we speak
  • Gulliver’s Travels

Now those are just some of my reading history…

I hope you’ll join me as I reread and remember some of these wonderful adventures of my past…

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45 thoughts on “The books that shaped the way I read…”

    1. The first to be read is BORN FREE – oh how I loved this book as a child. Found it in a box this morning, and before I knew what I was on page 64. It still thrills me, moves me, and takes me to that longed for place from my childhood – my imagination…


    1. Oh what a grand idea Brynne – do, do, do !!! We can compare. I’ve already dived wholeheartedly into Born Free, and am chasing elephants across the sandy dry soil of Africa before resting under a tree to sooth the sun’s rays from my rapidly browning/reddening skin.


  1. how amazing! an entire world away from you and I read all but two on your list the borrowers and a wizard of earthsea. Of the list, Daktari was my absolute favorite!
    I read absolutely voraciously as a young person; I’m sure it had to do with being an only child of extremely smothering, overprotective parents who barely let me out of the house for fear something would happen to me. My books let me soar…I was totally free when I read, imagining myself as whatever character struck me as interesting or worthy at the time.
    Great post, Jo! this one really struck a chord!
    ps. did you ever read Elsie Dinsmore? I couldn’t imagine why elsie wasn’t madly in love with her life… πŸ˜‰ Thinking about it now, I think feeling that way at age 10 might have been totally twisted!


    1. I know what you mean about books letting you soar !! The first thing I ever bought with my own money was a set of books – The Wonderful World of Walt Disney. There were four of them and I still have them all. I spent hours in them as a child. Just as I still have Daktari, Born Free, Rebecca, and a few others. I can’t bring myself to part with these loved and cherished companions.
      I will have to find Elsie Dinsmore – that is a new one for me !!!


  2. Wendy,
    I, too, love the books that have a purpose…entertainment. If you don’t feel like going to the library on a snowy or rainy day, check out my website, The download costs $3.00 per book because I have to pay a web host, but I can assure you that the selections are interesting. Also, take a moment to glance at the links provided and, maybe, add a comment.


  3. What a great list! Stuart Little and Watership Down were two that captured my heart when I was a wee-un. I just read Whuthering Heights over the last year or so. THAT’S a great book. So dark and gothic. How old were you when your read Whuthering Heights? It’s a pretty tough, sophisticated read. I’m impressed.


    1. I am going to put both Stuart Little (loved the movie) and Watership Down (again a great film) on my to read list.
      My fascination with Wuthering Heights started when I watched the 1970 film with Timothy Dalton as Heathcliffe.

      So I was about 12 – my Mum had recently died and I was into dark and gloomy – I guess that’s what attracted me to the story. As soon as I saw the film – got my hands on the book and have been a huge fan of it ever since. It never fails to draw me in to the story, such a dark disturbing, consuming love !
      Kate Bush also fanned my desire for the story with her song…


  4. Have fun with the reads. It will be interesting just to revisit that which you read and escaped into the youth of years past. It will be a whole different experience this time through I suspect. Not sure if should mention this, but hey what the heck, the one book I often reflect back on is a collection of Fairy Tales. Read it over an over.


    1. I think that is fabulous – I love Fairy Tales – one of the 4 books I first bought was all fairy tales, and I love the Grimm Brothers – so gory and tragic…just as a fairy tales should be !! Fairy Tales rock !!!!!!!!!!!!!


  5. What a wonderful list, Jo! My favorite on your list would have to be the Earthsea books. Ursula K. LeGuin is one of my favorite authors. There were some on here that I haven’t read but it probably wouldn’t hurt to check them out. I’m currently reading an 850 page novel, but there is a never-ending and always expanding list of “to reads”. πŸ™‚ Enjoy your reading! Born Free is a good one!


    1. So glad you liked it !! Did you ever sea the Earthsea series on TV ?? if so what did you think of it ???
      I’m loving reading Born Free again – it was a wonderful moment when I found the book I used to read as a child in the box – an old friend come back to me !!!


      1. I DID see the TV series of Earthsea, and as I remember, I was disappointed with it. Not that the cast was awful, just that they left so much out (I guess you kind of have to expect that, though – I know they can’t put everything in the books into that small of a time frame). πŸ™‚ Yes, cherished books ARE like old friends!


        1. I wasn’t horrified by the series but like you thought there was much left unsaid…it is always the way with the translation of books to film or TV – I try whenever possible to see the film first these days.


  6. P.S. Wanted to recommend a couple for you: Tailchaser’s Song by Tad Williams and of course, The Princess Bride by William Goldman. Both are fabulous reads and I think you’ll dig them!


      1. So far, I am 177 pages into it and it’s pretty good. It’s the newest Stephen King book, called “11/22/63″…reads like typical King and there are some tie-ins to my favorite King book of all time, “It”, so I love it that those are there. πŸ™‚ The God Delusion is one that is on my list, as well…have a couple of friends who thoroughly enjoyed it. I have to be in the right mood for ‘non-fiction’ though…although, if you like that kind of thing, I can recommend “The God Particle” πŸ™‚ Very cool stuff and fascinating reading re: what we *think* we know about physcis…


          1. I have to read it in spurts – but it has me totally enthralled. I have never really gotten in to Stephen King…don’t know if it is because The Shining scared the crap out of me but since then I can’t enjoy him that much…hmmmmm


    1. I think I will – I do believe that I will most probably end up rereading the lot and a few more besides once I start. I was also a HUGE Agatha Christie fan…still have a box of all of those as well…might be my next challenge to read ALL Agatha’s books !!


  7. Great idea, Jo, and a brilliant list of books. There are a lot of my childhood favourites on there πŸ™‚ I envy you for being able to revisit these reads, I’ve promised myself that one day, when life’s a lot calmer, I’ll do the same. In the meantime, I’m looking forward to your posts about these books. I wonder what the reading experience will be like for you all these years later. x


  8. I can say with complete honesty, that books made me the Pirate I am today, well… at least the good parts. πŸ˜‰ I’m the only person in my family who reads for fun. As a child, I wanted nothing to do with reading. The summer between 4th and 5th grade though, my soon to be 5th grade teacher gave us a summer reading assignment. We each had to pick one book out of her collection, to read over the summer and discuss it when school started. By sheer accident, I picked up The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury. I read it 3 times that summer and I’ve been a reader ever since.

    I sold many of my book collections when I moved aboard my Pirate ship, but I still have 600+ paperbacks on the boat, and I’ve read them all numerous times. I read mostly Sci-Fi and Fantasy, and reading is by far my most enjoyable form of entertainment. As soon as I finish a book, I’ve already started another before the first none is back on the shelf.

    I think the qualities I am most proud of within myself, came from reading, admiring and trying to emulate the heroes in the stories I read as a child. They weren’t perfect, but they had good hearts, they tried, and they were all very real to me. I have sooo many wonderful books and authors that I enjoy. If I had to pick ‘one’ book and call it my favorite, that draws me in every time I read it (just read it again for the 5th-6th time last week), it would be The Book of Joby by Mark J. Ferrari.

    Great post Jo, thanks!!


    1. Books have always held something special for me…stories tell us so much about life, ourselves, others, just as your books speak to the person you are. I will have to try to find The Book of Joby now – to take me inside your heart and head…
      I love that you have so many books. People often ask why I hang on to so many of mine, and there is no way to actually explain to them the reason. you either understand (because you do it as well) or you don’t.


  9. I read so much as a child mom finally forbid books at the breakfast table. I began reading the cereal boxes – until I told her, years later, she never knew I asked for different brands of cereal once I had the box memorized!

    My favorite childhood book was ‘Heidi”. I wanted to live on a mountain, with the pine trees sighing all around. I drank my milk out of a bowl, like Heidi, for nearly a year. Lucky I was to have tolerant parents who allowed it!


    1. Oh how wonderful…although she isn’t up on this list, Heidi was certainly another favourite of mine. I love that your parents let you drink milk out of the bowl for a year…and I know what you mean about reading cereal packets.


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