Books are my bag. My thing, my hobby, my escape, pastime, lifetime love.
I can’t think of a time in my life where I haven’t been reading a book. Or two. Or, when I was young and had more time, three on the go at once!
Of course, Mum and Dad encouraged me endlessly, but I do remember hearing the phrase, particularly on family holidays, “Take your nose out of your book! Look around you!” which I’d usually adhere to for at least 30 seconds before my eyes
would find the page again…
I wanted to share with you just a few of my favourite children’s books I remember from my own childhood, ranging from just discovering books to reading for pleasure – ages are approximated!
This series is just so adorable. Meet Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy, a scruffy terrier type who lives on, you guessed it – Donaldson’s Dairy. His friends, a mixture of breeds from a sausage dog to an old english sheepdog are the top dogs (!) of the neighbourhood with only Scarface Claw (a black tom cat) taking top seat.
His fearful caterwauling terrifies Hairy Maclary and friends and sends them running back home. A gorgeous read with beautiful illustrations, this one is special as Mum tells me I learnt to read with this book. (Best get practicing your meows and woofs!)
Age 3 -7
This incredibly atmospheric book still stays with me, at least 20 years later. The illustrations are so beautifully painted, even looking at them now draws me back into the sleepy world of bedtime stories curled up with Mum.
Lilly’s grandmother tells her the story of the whales who filled the ocean and how just once, a long time ago, she heard them singing. Lilly dreams of the whales and they come to her, dancing across the water and singing.
Age 2 – 5
Again this one brings so many memories flooding back even as I type the title.
With gorgeous illustrations and a really soothing storyline, Big Bear tries to convince Baby Bear he doesn’t need to be afraid of the dark, there’s light all around him.
Starting with the lamps in the cave, they work their way through all the light bright things before discovering there’s one light that will never go out – the moon.
Age 8 – 12
I can’t even tell you how many times I read and re-read this book, I lost count.
Protagonist Milo finds a mysterious game in a box in his bedroom one day. On opening the game, he finds himself sitting inside the little toy car! Suddenly he’s in a magical world of numbers and letters. His journey takes him from Dictionopolis to Digitopolis meeting a heap of rather interesting characters along the way and saving the day more than once or twice.
The narrative is chock full of clever puns and imaginative twists, and Milo is a perfect character for young readers to empathise with as along his journey, his new friends convince him there is more to life and learning than he thinks.
I’m sure this one is on your list as well! Such a classic.
A group of children have a magic tree at the bottom of their garden which, when you climb to the top, has a different magical world waiting for you to explore every week.
The multitude of fantastical worlds and the mind-bending imagination of Blyton just astounded and delighted me as a kid, and of course, dear Moonface.
This is the third in the 4 book series and we’ve just discovered it’s to be made into a film this year! How very exciting!
These are literally just a handful of my favourite children’s books and obviously they range in ages but I firmly believe any reading you do with your little ones is good reading and if you enjoy the story too – even better!
This was a lovely blog post to write and we had such a giggle in the office talking about books from our childhoods and of course, what we now read to our children.
What were your favourite books as children?
Can you remember?