Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Children,s books

Lists! I love them and when they are lists compiled by experts listing the top 10 of whatever their chosen field is I love them even more. Largely, so I can be outraged by them and feel myself to be morally and intelectually superior. This week all the children's laureate's listed what they considered to be the top five children's books. I can see that JK Rowling and Philip Pullman haven't been round long enough to see how they age. I am very surprised that Roald Dahl isn't included and I would seriously question whether Oliver Twist is suitable for children at all! However on the whole these books reflect the authors' favourite books from their childhoods. So after some thought I have decided to list my favourite books from my childhood( I think - I might change my mind)
The land of Green Ginger by Noel Langley
Jennie by Paul Galico
Black Beauty Anna Sewell
The horse and his boy by C.S Lewis
The House at Pooh corner A.A. Milne

So what are other people's favourites?


Helen said...

Tricky! I'd forgotten the Land of Green Ginger, but loved it so much!
I think :
Winnie the Pooh
Eagle of the Ninth by Rosemary Sutcliffe
One is one by Barbara leonie Picard
Land of Green Ginger
One of the Narnia books but I'm not sure which.

I might change my mind tomorrow when I think it through though

Kate said...

Maybe it's my age but I can't BELIEVE (check out my outrage) that there's no Roald Dahl in there. Point taken about the Harry books and I personally don't think the Philip Pullman books are that accessible for kids, or even that great except the first one. Tough choices, but my recommendations would be:
* Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
* Any of the Famous Five books - Enid Blyton
* What Katy Did (obviously for me!)
* Winnie the Pooh - A.A.Milne
* The Hungry Caterpillar (for the younger readers)

I am genuinely shocked by that list. I'd also add a number or Roald Dahl books as all kids should have a chance to make their own George's Marvellous Medicine and try and move pencils with their mind like Matilda.

I also loved that book Grandma had by Spike Milligan called Badjelly The Witch - do you remember that?!


Kate said...

P.S: Some of this is age specific as I am willing to bet that Erin would include Jacqueline Wilson books in here.

I'd also shamefacedly add the Sweet Valley High books as I just loved them...must've been a pre-cursor to enjoying trash like America's Next Top Model on TV :)


Anonymous said...

Every list must have Alice in Wonderland and Wind in the willows on it!!! Also the Swallows and Amazons books.

Sea Dog

oreneta said...

Yes indeed, the Swallows and Amazons. The Little House on the Praries series. Anne of Green Gables, The Wind in the Willows. ANYTHING by Patricia Polacco, anything at all, the Mr Putter series by Cynthia Rylant, Cheaper by the Dozen, anything I have seen by Shirley Hughes, but most especially the Alfie and Annie Rose books, some Gerald Durrels, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, the two A.A.Milne books of poems, Rosemary Wells' book of nursery rhymes, One Morning in Maine and the other book by that author, Robert McClosky, The Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wrede, I could go on and on and on.....those off the top of my head anyway. I am sure to wake up in the night having thought of more. Right now Eldest and I are reading The Mysterious Benedict Society and it is really good, plus Youngest is in love with Nancy Drews, which I also adored as a kid. They aren't as good now as an adult though. Dahl of course, though my favourite was Danny the Champion of the World.

Helen said...

Chris - it was supposed to be 5! But I can't believe I left out Alan Ahlberg because I love them all. I can recite all of Each Peach Pear Plum and still reread the poetry books. Can we do 5 in each age group? I agree with Kate that Dahl should be in there, and I can never see what the fuss is about Philip Pullman because I can think of loads of better authors. It's interesting that Chris has put in so many different books from her Canadian background.

Boo and Trev said...

Something ironic about spelling intellectually wrong...........

Anonymous said...

This is all very female. The male Grandchildren go for the more intellectual stuff. Captain Underpants is probably top of the list. Lets have some sexual equality here. Katie what does carl have to say?

Sea dog

Helen said...

But Captain Underpants is for that generation. It is very generation biased I think. The Laureates have gone for the books they read/had read to them, and we have done the same Hence Boo and I have no Dahl but Kate has and Matilda was and is one of Nic's favourite ever books. I doubt if 2 of my selection are still in print. However George's generation will certainly include Captain Underpants, or Horrid Henry, or Babette Cole (who I love actually.

Boo and Trev said...

In which case you can't have the Ahlbergs! The only books I can remember from Under 5 are Winnie the Pooh books, Dr Suess books and Mr Hucklebones - which I've still got!

Erin said...

I think they should specify what age range they are talking about!! Because if it was early early childhood then I would put the jolly postman in there and spot the dog and eloise... but I'm guessing they're talking about books which involve more writing than pictures!!

in which case i guess i'd have:
black beauty (childrens edition obviously)
any of the my naughty little sister books
the twits
probably a dick king smith book, but not sure which one
and yes would have to put in a jacqueline wilson one, though again im not sure which!!

OK my list isn't very specific, but never mind....

Hilarious Catastrophes said...

oooo, I like this one...


Dogger by Shirley Hughs
Peepo by Janet and Alan Ahlberg
Alfie and Annie Rose books
The Jolly Postman (although my sister spoiled it as she lost some of the little bits that came with the book.)
Peter Pan.. because my mum read it to me.

There are more I could choose, like Oh Dear by Rod campbell, or the Little Engine that Could, but those are more related to good memories than for the books sake themselves. Pop up books were generally a winner with both my sister and I.

:o) xxxx

Hilarious Catastrophes said...

oh, but I forgot my dearest name-sake... Alice in Wonderland, although I have read it very recently and can't remember it as a child so well.

And wind in the willows...

Ohh, I really cant narrow it down... My initial list was from when I was really very small...

When I was older, so about 11, I think I even liked the "Babysitters Club" books... but they weren't at all good enough to make my official list. And I liked Enid Blytons Naughtiest Girl books, although my memories of those are of a girl who was much more interesting and spoke up for things and had a lot of guts, rather than actually being naughty... On principal I can't say they are very relevant to children now. xxx

Anonymous said...

I paged Peggy on the subject. She used to get annuals which she loved. There was something called the Children's Encyclopedia annual.

But best of all was the Wizard of OZ. I always thought it was just a movie, but Peggy would have been reading it 15-20 years earlier.
Sea Dog

Boo and Trev said...

I remember Mum reading the Wizard of Oz to me and she said that she read it to you, Sea Dog, and you were so scared that she couldn't finish it! Clearly you were too traumatised to remember!

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure I'm old enough for Wizard of Oz yet. I know they took me to the movie as a kid and I howled and they had to leave. I'm better on "Psycho" than "wizard"