Anywho...this is Children's Book Week, and to celebrate, I'd like to share some of my favorite books from my childhood. Let's hope I can remember them all!
It will surely sound cliche, but as a child, one of my fondest memories was of going to the old Saratoga Springs Public Library children's room. The library was built into a hill, and the lower level was the children's room. The view out the windows was of beautiful Congress Park, full of grass and fountains and ponds and ducks. I remember my Mom, or my Dad (when Mom worked on Saturdays), taking me to the library with my little sister. We would each pick out our pile of books, and carry them up to the check-out desk, where we would present our very worn paper library cards to the librarian. Curious George, Dr. Seuss, all the usual suspects.
But, the titles I really remember are the ones we owned. They are worn and their bindings are falling apart from re-re-re-reading. There are scribbles in pen, pencil and crayon in them. We loved them almost out of existence.
In no particular order...ok, in the order that I'm remembering them (with help from Mom and Sis):
- Hildy's Hideaway by Mabel Watts - Poor Hildy needs to find a place to have her kittens, and every time she thinks she has found the perfect spot, something happens to make her move on.
- Princess Snip Snip And The Puppykittens by Steve Allen (yes, the comedian) - A vain princess learns that she isn't the cutest thing in the kingdom.
- Peppermint by Dorothy Grider - The story of a baby blue kitten - really!
- The Wonderful School by May Justus - I wish I went to this school.
- Strawberry Girl by Lois Lenski
- Bartholomew and the Oobleck by Dr. Seuss - Icky, sticky, green fun, with a moral.
- The Magic Carousel by Dorothy Levenson - Two girls ride the carousel in Central Park, the horses leap off the carousel and take them on a tour of NYC in the wintertime. Beautiful artwork.
- Goldilocks and the Three Bears - Mom says I had to have this read to me every night. :)
- Mother Mother I Feel Sick Send for the Doctor Quick Quick Quick by Remy Charlip & Burton Supree - Weirdness. I love it.
- The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson - Magical and mysterious.
- Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder - Read all the books, and now I live there - weird, huh?
- The Black Stallion series by Walter Farley - We didn't own these, but every time my elementary school class went to the school library, I checked out the next one in the series, until I had read them all. I should really try to get my own copies now....
And then there were the books I loved that made me cry:
- The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis - The final book, The Last Battle - I didn't want Narnia to end.
- The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Andersen - NOT the Disney abomination. The real Little Mermaid is a melancholy tale, with a sad ending.
- Watership Down by Richard Adams - The ending still makes me cry. Do I enjoy sad endings too much?