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Which "adult" classics are suitable for children

(24 Posts)
MrsFogi Wed 12-Nov-14 17:08:03

The dcs are devouring audiobooks at quite a pace on car journeys and whilst I do get them lots of "children's books" (e.g. Michael Morpurgo which I love) they've also enjoyed things like The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings series, a few of the Jules Verne classics, Oliver Twist etc. So I'm wondering what else I can get them to listen to that will appeal to their imaginations. Do any of you with a better knowledge of English literature have any ideas? I was thinking about Great Expectations as I remember the beginning being rather gripping but must admit I can't remember where it went after that….Whilst I'd love to find an excuse to listen to Pride and Prejudice I suspect this will not appeal to them yet as it doesn't involve children or an adventurous saga.

Jessbags001 Wed 12-Nov-14 18:22:01

What ages are they? I remember enjoying HG Wells Time Machine but it is a little creepy in places.

KimSlazinger Wed 12-Nov-14 18:55:48

How about Black Beauty, or Alice in Wonderland?

sourdrawers Wed 12-Nov-14 19:07:51

Huckleberry Finn, Tom sawyer.

skolastica Thu 13-Nov-14 09:40:34

Not adult classic, but Wind in the Willows read by Alan Bennet was a favourite in our house. Look for the BBC radio collection.

Also Just William.

I think that we might also have listened to Jeeves and Wooster.

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Thu 13-Nov-14 09:44:35

How old are they?
Funny books usually go down well, even without children in them. P.G.Wodehouse, Saki, The Diary of a Nobody (I discovered this aged about 8 through an extract in a school reading book and was thrilled to discover my dad had the whole book!), Cold Comfort Farm.

Agree about Just William - the Martin Jarvis audiobooks are terrific and though it's mostly nominally for kids, she did write the first few for adults and the vocabulary throughout the series reflects that.

agoodbook Thu 13-Nov-14 09:50:50

As they are children, how about
Philip Pullman trilogy
C S Lewis Narnia series
Goodnight Mr Tom
The Railway Children
The Borrowers
Terry Pratchett

agoodbook Thu 13-Nov-14 09:56:04

Oh- I didn't read the post properly - sorry!

I loved Walter Scott , Robert Louis Stevenson and Alexander Dumas as a teenager, but they don't have children in them ...

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Thu 13-Nov-14 09:59:03

Treasure Island does!
In a similar spirit, Moonfleet by J.Meade Faulkner (technically it is a kids' book, as is Treasure Island, but probably more read by adults these days.)
And continuing the island theme, Robinson Crusoe and Swiss Family Robinson.
Sherlock Holmes!

MarrogfromMars Thu 13-Nov-14 10:09:21

A Christmas Carol? (In a few weeks, maybe) - other suggestions:
39 Steps - not exactly great literature but a good yarn, some attitudes that jar for the modern reader but it is a century old!
Terry Pratchett? Equal Rites maybe?

agoodbook Thu 13-Nov-14 12:01:58

true thecountess brain not working this morning smile- I was thinking of Robinson Crusoe and Treasure Island and mixed it up !

MrsFogi Fri 14-Nov-14 18:46:42

Thanks for all the suggestions, they've enjoyed a few of them but your answers have given me some great ideas!

FriendlyLadybird Sat 15-Nov-14 16:15:20

The Prisoner of Zenda?
Children of the New Forest?
How about Ivanhoe? No children but loads of adventure ...
I think a lot of Dickens would be great, but it would depend on how alert they would be to some of the rather disturbing things going on in them
Are there audiobooks of John Buchan? My nephew has enjoyed those.
Also -- how about Hornblower?

LeBearPolar Sat 15-Nov-14 16:17:44

If they haven't listened to the William stories read by Martin Jarvis, that is a must. Richmal Crompton of course wrote them for adults.

Missrabbitshouldjoinaunion Sat 15-Nov-14 16:43:10

Not an audiobook, but we used to have Blackadder on in the car which we loved. Can't think of anything worse than Gt Expectations though - by far and away the most boring 809 page trudge of my life! Hard Times might be a good one though.

Missrabbitshouldjoinaunion Sat 15-Nov-14 16:44:42

Oh and the When Hitler Stole Ponk Rabbit trilogy is a good one - re-read it recently. Really good for children and adults.

Becca19962014 Sat 15-Nov-14 16:55:34

Was The Hobbit/Lord of the rings the radio play? I really enjoyed those!!

There are a lot of the radio four radio plays (if they were readings then get the radio plays they are really good) which are similar that they might enjoy, I know they did the secret garden and the wizard of oz both are good adaptions in my opinion. I do also have where someone is just reading the books as well. A tale of two cities was done as a radio play as well and works well as it is four or five disks and moves at quite a pace.

I have a lot of audio books and I love the play versions done by radio four. I've rarely listened to a poor one (though I expect someone will come along now and list some bad ones wink)

LittleBairn Sat 15-Nov-14 17:04:20

I'm another one for Philip Pullmans His Dark Material trilogy, possibily depending on the age only the first book for now.
The BBC full cast one is great as well as the full audio book one.
I've listened to them again and again so been well worth the money.

If they like the Hobbit I would look for an audio version of Beowulf.

Oliver Twist
The secret Garden

LittleBairn Sat 15-Nov-14 17:08:31

The book thief

LeBearPolar Sat 15-Nov-14 17:18:52

Sean Bean reading the Arthurian legends; Simon Armitage reading Gawain and the Green Knight? Sam West reading Peter Pan.

HappydaysArehere Sun 16-Nov-14 15:28:58

Loved and still do the William books. Reread some recently and still laughed my head off. Loved Little Women and Good Wives which are my favourite books of all time. Great Expectations is wonderful but having read more Dickensi of late I was struck by the different style of language which often needed rereading to get the hang of. Don't remember any difficulty with Great Expectations which I read as a youngster and it is one of his shorter books. So much by Dickens was written to fulfil his obligation to provide a certain number of instalments for periodicals. They can be real tomes. Perhaps you can get abridged editions for children.

MorelliOrRanger Sun 30-Nov-14 09:43:00

Swallows and amazons?

mummytime Sun 30-Nov-14 10:11:43

Please don't ruin Jane Austin by giving it too young - at 17 I was too young, I got it at 21 - but I might just be a late developer. Jane Eyre is fun. Great Expectations - was my set book for O'level - I only just got to the end having read an audio book read by Hugh Laurie - the beginning is okay but it petters off.
Treasure Island? Hucklebury Finn?

WitchesGlove Tue 02-Dec-14 14:28:19

Gullivers travels


Sherlock Holmes

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