Between the ages of six to sixteen, I had three definite favourite books: The Naughtiest Girl in the School; Scarlett; The Truth about Forever. Each of the books were “my favourite book” at ages six-nine, ten-twelve, thirteen-seventeen, respectively. Among others, I still consider them to be three of my favourite books. I challenged my mum to read ten of my favourite books, including Scarlett and and The Truth about Forever. After she enjoyed reading them, I decided as soon as exams are over on Friday, I will read all three books to celebrate. Today I thought I’d write a little gift guide for younger readers (or any reader!) regarding these books and explain why we should definitely read our favourite childhood books.
The Naughtiest Girl in the School by Enid Blyton: This timeless story by Enid Blyton follows Elizabeth’s adventures at boarding school. Spoilt and selfish, she cannot and will not get along with boarding school, deciding to be the naughtiest girl in the school. The whole series of books will always be an absolute favourite of mine. They are some of my mum’s favourite childhood books too; both of us are Enid’s number one fangirls. So much so that when we had to dress up as a book character at school, I was repeatedly Elizabeth!
Scarlett by Cathy Cassidy: I would spend all of my pennies on Cathy Cassidy books at the end of junior school. I thought they were super magical and the front covers would give me butterflies (I’ve always been a book nerd). This story is about Scarlett and how her inability to follow the rules and get along at school (she and Elizabeth would make the best of friends) lands her in Ireland with her dad who she desperately tried to cut ties with. But Ireland brings with it a new family she wants to despise and a guy on a horse (what every story ever needs). My mum read it a couple of weeks ago and I think understood why I fell in love with it when I was ten.
The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen: Before last year, I read this book every summer just because it makes me feel so warm and gooey. Macy is silently struggling after her dad (her number one running buddy) died. But a summer she wasn’t expecting provides a kind of coming of age undertone that changes her perspective and helps her grief. I can’t wait to feel like a human chocolate brownie (warm and gooey) when I read this in a week or so.
I feel like these three books (or maybe I’m reading – waheey – too much into it) probably shaped a lot of me. Not only are they three of the reasons I adore reading, they taught me a lot and provided me with some happy memories (especially as I went back to each of them repeatedly- something I don’t do with many books). I think reading our favourite childhood books is important because it provides a different type of escapism to the current books we read. I think it’s why I have read The Truth about Forever so many times. It brings a lovelier, hopefully more stress-free kind of experience that takes us back to those moments as children and allows similar childish thoughts and feelings to enter our minds.
Just because we’ve grown up a little bit, it doesn’t mean things we used to love don’t make us childishly excited anymore. I don’t like the idea of growing out of things that don’t need to grow out of. It’s probably the principle behind why my brother and I still play Star Wars Battlefront 2 on the PS2. It brought us pure happiness and still, to this day, does. I may have read a couple of classics since I was younger and broadened my reading horizons since naughty schoolchildren, summers and boys with crooked grins, but it doesn’t mean the stories don’t still make me feel gloriously giddy. And, still, the protagonists I am reading about (who are now younger than me- ew) teach me a bunch of things. Books don’t age; they stay the same. There’s some comfort in that while the world is ageing around us.
~ Kat ~
P.S. I have been blogging everyday and my last post was a vegetarian recipe!