Sunday, September 23, 2007

Question of the Week - What's your favorite book from when you were a child?

Narrowing down my list of favorite books from childhood is a nearly impossible task. I was (and still am!) a serious re-reader, reaching for the same novels over and over again until the page-edges went soft from being turned so many times. My copy of Are You There God? It’s me, Margaret pretty much fell apart at the seams. Ditto the Laura Ingalls Wilder books. I can make a list a mile long of books I couldn’t have lived without. But if I really have to pick just one, it would be A Little Princess, by Frances Hodgsen Burnett.

Yes, seriously.

I adore that book. The tragedy of Sara’s fall from the upper class, her courage and grace even in the midst of the horrifying conditions she’s forced to endure, the irony of her nearness to rescue . . . the happy ending. Burnett’s descriptions are so vivid that to this day I think of one particular passage in A Little Princess every time I see an especially pretty sunset.

And I still reread it every couple of years. And it’s still just as magical as the first time I read it when I was eight. And that’s why if I had to pick just one . . . that’s the one it would be.

No, I don’t know how I ended up writing horror, either.

1 comment:

Patrick said...

I really didn't get into reading until High School, until then I hated it. Around my sophomore year I was assigned the horrible task of reading the Outsiders. Love it. After that I was hooked and have been reading almost non-stop ever since.

I guess it all has to do with teachers assigning the "classics" instead of just trying to instill a love of reading in their students. I encourage my kids to read whatever they want, and they are all insatiable readers.