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Children's books

Which of your favourites from childhood have you re-read recently?

59 replies

5Foot5 · 20/09/2009 16:54

I am lucky in that my DD is a voracious reader and often willing to try books I remember enjoying when I was a kid. This gives me the excuse to have them around the house and enjoy an indulgent re-read occasionally.

All the Malory Towers books have long been favourites, along with Secret Island, The Children Who Lived in a Barn and several Jennings books.

But most recently the old friend I rediscovered was Jill.

We had an old copy of "Jill and the Perfect Pony" and after reading it DD asked me if their were any other books about her. Well I could remember one or two others from when I was a kid but I did the research and found the full list (only 9 in total) and we were able to pick up secondhand copies of all of them fairly cheaply over Amazon Marketplace.

We are both having a bit of a Jill-fest at the moment and I am remembering how much I adored these years ago. I never had a pony or riding lessons but used to turn our back lawn in to an imaginary gymkhana with little jumps and pretend to be Jill!!

What childish delights do others like to read when noone much is looking?

OP posts:
Takver · 20/09/2009 20:13

Didn't you find the language a bit spiffing though 5foot5? I got a copy of Jill's Pony Club for dd at a jumble sale and was tickled pink by the slang (can't remember exactly what, but it made me giggle).
I have to confess that I definitely 'check for suitability' all of my old books before passing them on to dd. Some of them we've had as bedtime stories as well, we even got a few extra Wombles books to add to my old ones.

englishpatient · 21/09/2009 10:50

5foot5, you might like to look at 2 websites - www.ggbp.co.uk and www.fidrabooks.com - both are republishing old books and I have quite a few from both!

I loved most of the ones you mention, especially the Jill books, plus the Jinny series (pony + wild child in Scotland) by Patricia Leitch, more or less anything by the Pullein-Thompson sisters, the Tamzin+Rissa books by Monica Edwards... the list is endless and I read old children's books more than anything else!

I sometimes find some of the language a bit old-fashioned but I love the freedom the children seemed to have and their self-dependence.

5Foot5 · 21/09/2009 13:07

englishpatient: Thanks for those links. I had heard of www.ggbp.co.uk but not the other so I will have to take a look.

I love the old-fashioned vocab that Jill uses and was most amused the other day when I heard DD(13) adopting some of it!

The versions I bought had all been re-printed in the early 1980s and, although the text had been largely left alone (thank goodness), the one thing that was changed was that all sums of money had been converted in to decimal currency.

This seems pretty ridiculous really since it only highlights the difference in worth even more. In the chapter I just read Jill bought jodphurs and a jacket at auction for 62 1/2 pence and worries that her Mum can't afford a sum like that. Even in the 1980s a child would think 62 1/2 p a relatively trifling sum whereas if they had just left it at 12 shillings and sixpence they would just accept that it was quite alot

OP posts:
OrmIrian · 21/09/2009 13:09

Green Smoke and Dragon in Danger by Rosemary Manning.
Kingdom of Carbonel
Little WHite horse (again!)

paddingtonbear1 · 21/09/2009 13:13

I also liked Malory Towers and still have one of the books. My old faves though were the Chalet School books. My mum gave most of them away to charity (without asking, how could she?!) but I still have a few. dd is too young to read them yet.
I recently bought 'The Diddakoi' by Rumer Godden from Amazon, I loved the tv series.
I'd forgotten about the Jinny books!

hotchachachaingbunny · 21/09/2009 13:40

Have just finished When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit by Judith Kerr, and Started the Silver Sword by Ian Serrallier last night.

Must acquire some pony books! Dd is really enjoying The Little Princess ATM, and seems to accept the old-fashioned language as part of the charm!

hanaflowerhatestheDM · 21/09/2009 13:42

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JeffVadar · 21/09/2009 16:39

Re-read Paddington with DS a year or so ago, and actually enjoyed them more than when I read them as a child!

englishpatient · 21/09/2009 19:44

The Silver Sword was read to us superbly by my top-class primary school teacher and has always remained a much loved story.

I also loved Rumer Godden's stories, especially "Miss Happiness and Miss Flower"; I had forgotten about "The Diddakoi" and "The Dolls' House" until DD was given them a couple of years ago - we both enjoyed them.

hotchachachaingbunny - I can suggest loads more pony books if you're interested! As a teenager I came across a much respected adult friend's collection of pony books and was encouraged to feel that even "grown-ups" might read them; as I've got older I have begun my own collection and discovered many "new" old titles, such as Primrose Cumming's books and some more by KM Peyton apart from her Flambards series.

paddingtonbear1 · 21/09/2009 19:57

I also liked Anne of Green Gables..

RosieMBanks · 21/09/2009 21:08

Any of the Mary Plain books by Gwynedd Rae, or Catherine Storr's 'Clever Polly and the Stupid Wolf' series. Also love Elizabeth Goudge's 'The Little White Horse', and 'Towers in the Mist', and M.M. Kaye's 'The Ordinary Princess'. Lorna Hill's ballet books have been a recently re-discovered pleasure...the 'Wells' series.

RosieMBanks · 21/09/2009 21:11

Oh, and anything by Noel Streatfeild or Joan Aiken...'Ballet Shoes', 'White Boots' and 'The Wolves of Willoughby Chase' are favourites.

choosyfloosy · 21/09/2009 21:16

OH MY GOD ORMIRIAN!!!!

i have been trying to remember those Rosemary Manning books for months! I loved them! Thank you thank you thank you!

off to amazon PRONTO

mankyscotslass · 21/09/2009 21:29

Recently re-read all the Laura Ingalls Wilder books, and am reading them to my DD. I love them! And was sad to learn Charles Ingalls line totally died out when his only grandaughter died.

I still revisit the Chalet School Series, and all the Enid Blyton school books.

When I was at mums recently I dug out the Dark is Rising series by Susan Cooper, and the Taran books by Lloyd Alexander.

And I still love the Narnia stories.

choosyfloosy · 21/09/2009 21:29

I have to say though I read Carbonel and Calidor a few months ago and was deeply disappointed.

Ditto to the Fell Farm Campers books - dreadful. The Worlds End four books though were just as lovely as I remembered them, and seem even more radical now than they did then.

Doodlez · 21/09/2009 21:31

Bought Malory Towers first term to read to DD.

I read it to myself!

Just finished reading DS's Michael Murpurgo (sp?) coz DS (aged 8!) wasn't reading it fast enuff .

pollyperkins · 21/09/2009 21:41

I just reread The Worst Witch by Jill Murphy and keep trying to get my DD to name a toy (any toy I honestly don't mind which one) Mildred or Maud. I read the whole series when I was about 8 or so and loved them.

And as for Anne of Green Gables - I loved those and reread the first 3 a little while ago. I forgot that my plan was to marry Gilbert Blythe.

weegiemum · 21/09/2009 21:46

I still read the Anne of Green Gables stuff regularly and am planning on introducing it to dd1 soon!

I am reading the Narnia books to her at the moment (while also reading Harry Potter to all 3) and we are on "Dawn Treader" - I keep having to stop as I am tearing up in so many places - the book was very special to me as a child as I read it while my parents were in the horrible arguing phase of splitting up! It was my escape.

Also love the Chalet School books but will not pay the extortionate online prices for them - though I have a lot from charity shops etc before they got so popular again!

pippel · 21/09/2009 21:54

Ive just read Ramona the pest to dd1 they have never been very popular in the uk though I dont think but I loved them! So did dd, they are lovely books

they are being made in to a film with one of those disney channel girls as beezus so I think they are going to get very popular

I cant wait until shes old enough for the chalet school books!

LadyGlencoraPalliser · 21/09/2009 22:06

I love Ramona!
I have shared my love of Lorna Hill (Sadlers Wells) with DD1 and also Angela Brazil and Antonia Forest. We both reckon Autumn Term and End of Term are the best school stories ever.
DD2 and I share historical fiction - we have just finished reading When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit together and have started The Workhouse Child by Geraldine Symons.
I love Rosemary Sutcliff and Henry Treece too and often reread them as comfort reads.

pollyperkins · 21/09/2009 22:09

Ramona the Pest series was brilliant - I can't say I'm happy with the news they're going to be on a disney channel - boo hiss. Pippel did you try The Mouse and the Motorcycle too? That was good.

HumphreyCobbler · 21/09/2009 22:12

Antonia Forest was quite brilliant.

I love loads mentioned already but have just read all the Greene Knowe series. Fantastic.

mwff · 21/09/2009 22:13

burglar bill asterix, swallows & amazons, all the moomin books. tove jansson is perhaps my favourite author.

LadyGlencoraPalliser · 21/09/2009 22:16

We've only got a few of the Greene Knowe books. I must get the rest.
I reread all the Swallows and Amazons this summer - my fave is We Didn't Mean to Go to Sea. I wish I could get the DC to read them - DD1 read the first one and gave it the thumbs down.

pippel · 21/09/2009 22:17

Ive never read that one but Im always on the look out for good books to read to dd and shes such a good author that I think that I might have to give it a go!

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