As an adult, I am consumed by anticipation and joy while waiting for World Book Night (which has just expanded to the US), an evening where I get to pitch a favorite read to complete strangers with the hope that it'll be the one that reels them in. But for children, World Book Day, is a day of bookish festivities in classrooms, libraries and book shops in many countries around the world. From book credits that offer free books, to dressing up as their favorite literary characters, to events featuring some magnificent authors, children everywhere get to explore and share their love of reading today.
World Book Day (now celebrating it's 15th year) is, as brought to you by the super snazzy wesbite, "the biggest celebration of its kind, designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and marked in over 100 countries all over the world." (Take a peek, you'll fall in love). All and all, it's a wonderful event, and I'm wishing all participants a day full of imagination and glee!
While exploring the books available, I began to think about all the titles I adored as a child and thought I'd create a little post to share. Here are five books that rocked my young world:
1. The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton
When I was just a tiny thing, I would beg my mother to read this with me every night. My brothers and I dreamed of having a tiny pond that we could swim in during the summer, and skate on during the winter. The cherry blossom trees that bloomed all around the little house during the Spring looked like our own yard. When the little house was neglected as the city grew around it, I pledged to never to do so when I grew up ("I'll never move to the city," and yet, here I am). It made me think of my family and my love for them and the warmth and beauty of the world surrounding us.
2. The Monster at the End of this Book by Jon Stone
Another that I read until the book binding started to crack and the pages turned flimsy. I was initially terrified of what I was going to encounter at the end of the book (I certainly didn't want to find a monster), only to be pleasantly surprised to find Grover's little blue face. I'll go ahead and name it my first mystery title! My obsession with Sesame Street at this age didn't help much. My mom recently grabbed a copy for my niece, and I'm looking forward to the time when we can read it together.
3. A Time for Andrew: A Ghost Story by Mary Down Hahn
Did anyone read this one?!? The school librarian read this aloud, at a few chapters a week, and I was just about dying with anticipation waiting for that period to roll around. I ended up getting my own copy and reading it AGAIN and AGAIN. Boy must live in a creaky old house with his very old grandparents - wakes to find the ghost of a boy waiting for him - switches places and travels back in time - MIGHT BE STUCK!?! It was like an epic suspense novel for that age. I loved it.
4. The Indian in the Cupboard by Lynne Reid Banks
Ok, so I can't remember exactly why I loved this one, but it's one that I always think back on when wandering down memory lane. Put little figurines in the cupboard, and poof! they become living things?! That practically blew my mind when I was younger. I think it was one of the first unputdownable books in my library. When they made a movie, my life was set.
5. Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred D. Taylor
I read this as a group as part of a school library program. I know that this one of the first books that shook me emotionally. Roll of Thunder.. opened another world to me and made me much more aware of the horrors of hate throughout history.
Oh! nostalgia. I'll admit I also indulged in The Babysitter's Club series, The Boxcar Children and Goosebumps. It's been a real treat reliving the memories of time spent curled up with a book as a youngster. I don't think I'll ever stop loving a great story! Feel free to participate and post a list of your favorite childhood reads!