I’ve always been book obsessed and, with a baby on the way, this has turned into an obsession with the books I loved as a child. Recently I’ve spent way too much time tracking down my out-of-print favorites. I asked six of my favorite bloggers for their favorite children’s book recommendation and they did not disappoint!
Three bloggers had really strong memories:
• Joanna from Cup of Jo says “I loved Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens by J.M. Barrie, which is the prequel to Peter Pan. It tells the story of how the baby Peter leaves his nursery and goes to live in Kensington gardens, making friends with fairies and birds. It’s heartbreakingly sweet and has gorgeous images by Arthur Rackham. When I was 12 and still believed that peter pan would come to my window, I found a copy of this book for 25 pounds (which was my life savings at that point) in a tiny used bookstore in Cornwall, England, while I was visiting my grandparents. I was totally and completely over the moon. One step closer to never land!”
• M. from Sometime Dresses, Sometimes Jeans says “My favorite was the story of Heidi. My copy was a green-cloth-covered unabridged edition. I loved it for the story of the plucky little milkmaid, the vivid descriptions of the toasted cheese on bread that Heidi’s grandfather would serve them for dinner and the hay-filled mattresses they would fall to sound sleep on… but I really loved it for the full-page illustrations of Heidi. See, in my book, Heidi was a tiny girl with a short crop of brown curls. The illustrator made a point in the illustrator’s note of explaining that that was how Johanna Spryi originally intended her heroine to look, but that over the years Heidi had somehow morphed into the blonde with braids everyone else remembers. And, for one little girl with a short crop of black curls, that made this Heidi all my own.”
• Stephanie from Even*Cleveland who worked as a children’s librarian for awhile and has a million favorite children’s book says her favorite is “without a doubt The Wuggie Norple Story , written by Daniel Manus Pinkwater and illustrated by Tomie DePaola (of Strega Nona fame). It is the story of a family who get a new kitten named Wuggie Norple who grows exponentially fast. Every day when the Dad comes home from work, he says Wuggie Norple is bigger than a new animal, then brings the animal home to prove the point that Wuggie Norple is indeed bigger – he ends up bringing home a bulldog, a donkey, a young razorback hog, and even an elephant – and every animal gets a new, ridiculous name – Laughing Gas Alligator, Exploding Poptart, etc. It’s silly and delightful, and my brother, sister and I loved it. We read it to pieces.”
Other top favorites:
• Brooke from Inchmark vividly remembers Alice in Wonderland and The Wizard of Oz. One of my favorite features on her blog are posts about weekly trips to the local library and the books she finds there with her two children.
Thank you ladies for sharing! Now, D*S readers, it’s your turn: what was your favorite children’s book as a child?