Saturday, November 17, 2007

Books that we have loved

I love books, I really, really love them and I have spent many happy hours reading to my girls. I have passed on my love of reading to my youngest daughter Paula, but unfortunately Rox is not a reader (sob, sob) – I think she inherited more of her Dad’s genes than mine and tends more towards hair-raising sports than curling up with a book!

Although we have read countless wonderful books over the years, some stand out head and shoulders above the rest; these are the books my children never tired of, even though we read them again and again; they are the books that they have fond memories of, the books that I am sure they will read to their own children one day. What follows is a list of these books that we have loved:

When my girls were little:

“Jesse Bear, what will you wear?” by N.W Carlstrom

“The very hungry caterpillar” by Eric Carle

“Corduroy” by Don Freeman

The Poky Little Puppy” by Janette Sebring Lowrey

The “Angus” books by Marjorie Flack

“Make way for ducklings” by Robert McCloskey

“The Big Green Pocketbook” by Candice Ransom

“Katie No-Pocket” by Emmy Payne

“Blueberries for Sal” by Robert McCloskey

When they were a little bigger:

The “Madeleine” books by Ludwig Bemelmans

The ‘Amelia Bedelia’ books by Peggy Parish

“The Faraway Tree” series by Enid Blyton

“Pippi Longstocking” by Astrid Lindgren

“Papa Piccolo” by Carol Talley and Itoko Maeno

As they got older:

The “Little House on the Prairie” series by Laura Ingalls Wilder

“The Boxcar Children” by Gertrude Chandler Warner

The “Anne of Green Gables” books by L M Montgomery

“The Tender Years” series by Janette Oke

I am sure there are some books I have forgotten to put on this list, I will probably edit this post as I think of them. In the meantime, I would love to hear about the books that have been special to your families – please leave a comment about them!

Those of you who homeschool and are familiar with Five in a Row, will notice that many of our favourite books for young children are those used in “Before Five in a Row”, I used this wonderful book to plan my daily reading and activities with Paula when she was 2-5 years old and I can’t recommend it highly enough, it has given her a lasting love of books and it is SO much fun to use. It is not only for homeschoolers, it can be used by any mom who enjoys reading to her little ones and doing craft type activities with them.


Charlotte said...

You've mentioned many of our family favourites. I can't wait for the Anne of Green Gables phase, as I loved them so much as a child.

I have one reader, and am waiting with bated breath to see if the other two turn out to be so too. Time will tell!

parlance said...

Hi, Gill.
I've taught primary-aged children for 35 years and many of the books were favorites of mine also.

Did you ever read the books about Harry the Dirty Dog? They were fun.

I'm not sure how old your girls are now, but a book I've recently read with a thirteen-year old is "Once" by Maurice Gleitzman. I mention it because it is by an Australian and you might not have come across it. However, it is not to be read lightly - you would definitely want to read it yourself, first, as it deals with the Holocaust from the point of view of a young boy.

By the way, my favorite thing about Pippi Longstocking was that she wanted to go to school so that she, too, could have holidays from school.

Mrs Coetser said...

Great - My husband and I were just wondering what book to buy next.
Thanks for sharing.

Jeanne said...

The best-loved (well, loved to death, judging by the state of them!) young children's books in our house were the Richard Scarry books. I particularly rememebr Cars & Trucks & Things That Go; the book where you had to find Goldbug hiding somewhere on the page, and a book where the characters travelled to all the European capitals - I remember drawings of the Eiffel Tower and Collosseum long before I knew what they were. We also loved all the Dr Seuss books, the Beatrix Potters (in Afrikaans translation, nogal!) and the Berenstains' bear books - especially the wonderful B Book (

I also loved the Faraway Tree, and when I got a little older, the Hardy Boys & Nancy Drew. I read Paul Gallico's Jenni when I was about 13 and loved it, rereading it a few times. And as a slightly older teenager, I adored SE Hinton's 4 coming of age books (The Outsiders; Tex; Rumblefish; and That was Then This is Now)