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broodings from the burrow

September 8, 2020

books i wish i’d read as a kid
posted by soe 12:13 am

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday from That Artsy Reader Girl is a little open ended, inviting us to consider books for our younger selves. However, what I want at the end of a long weekend is simple and concrete (although I kept having to expand my parameters to get to 10, so I failed). Here, then, are ten books that were published before I left middle school that I liked as an adult and probably would have loved as a kid:

  1. The Dark Is Rising series by Susan Cooper: Adolescent and teen me would have loved the moodiness of this series.
  2. The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin: This caper is great for any age, but I would have loved it when I was in elementary school.
  3. Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson: I read Paterson’s teen novels and come up with no reason for why I skipped this one, but I had a penchant for melodramatic death novels as a kid.
  4. The Neverending Story by Michael Ende: I liked the movie a lot.
  5. The Diddakoi by Rumer Godden: I haven’t read this novel about a Romani orphan with a 21st-century lens and don’t remember enough about it to know whether it would be considered offensive by today’s standards. But when I read it in 2001, I loved it and know my younger self would have as well. (I enjoyed several of her doll books as a kid.)
  6. The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster with illustrations by Jules Feiffer: I discovered this fantasy novel when I was in college, skivving off from class in the stacks of children’s books housed between my classroom door and the restroom.
  7. From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L. Konigsburg: This is another book I didn’t discover until college, but this time thanks to my friend Rebecca.
  8. The Tales of Magic series by Edward Eager: My bff, Karen, gave me the first few novels of this series when I moved away to D.C.
  9. The Swallows and the Amazons series by Arthur Ransome: This is a series that just didn’t get the attention in the U.S. that it should have (or maybe it had fallen out of favor, although I don’t see them in used bookstores like I would expect to if that had been the case) until after the first couple Harry Potter books were published.
  10. Matilda by Roald Dahl: Charlie made his rounds in my sixth-grade class, but this book-loving, butt-kicking girl arrived just a little too late for us.

How about you? Are there books that were around when you were a kid that you didn’t get to until years later?

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