I’ve seen these kinds of blogposts around a lot, and I’ve always wanted to go back down memory lane and revisit some childhood favorites! Unfortunately, memory lane is more like an overgrown dirt path. In the dark. And it’s foggy. ANYWAY, once I got my brain to work for me for once, I made a list of my favorite books from my childhood!
Harry Potter – J.K. Rowling
Yes, yes I know. Almost everyone’s favorite childhood book is Harry Potter. However, I was still barely a child when I finally picked the book up. I remember that my mom read it first and wanted me to read it too, but I was so uninterested. It was actually my younger brother that got me to finally read the series, albeit accidentally. I remember he watched the movie of the first book, and like a true twelve year old I got distracted by the pretty colors on TV and ended up watching the movie, too. Surprising myself, I liked it! So I finally read the book. The final book hadn’t even come out back then, but I remember buying the paperbacks from my allowance when I could.
The Famous Five – Enid Blyton
Okay to be honest, I’ve only read one book of this series… And it was the ninth! I got it as a gift from my mom one day I believe, and I did read it. I remember I really liked the book at the time! I think I must have only been around ten years old back then. Unfortunately I read that Enid Blyton was a horrible person in real life and her works have often been criticized for being sexist, elitist and even xenophobic. Obviously since I read only one book and I was only a child, all that went straight over my head, but I do wonder how I would view her books were I to read them now. Nevertheless, this one book of The Famous Five popped up in my head when creating this list.
Basically any book with horses
When I was between the ages of eight and eighteen I was a serious horse girl. I spent most of my free time at the stables cuddling the horses and giving them treats. I took all that love for horses with me into my reading. One of my favorite series was “Romana en Ragebol by Tina Caspari,” or how they were called in their original German “Bille und Zottel.” I think I’ve read all eleven books in the series! Although I couldn’t tell you now what actually happened in those books.. it’s been way too long!
Another one that I LOVED was Heartland by Lauren Brooke. This series is about a ranch that treats abused and traumatized horses with psychological means instead of more traditional ones. The age group is ten years and older, but I remember that it gets pretty dark sometimes, so reader beware. This series is long too; 25 books. I have not read them all, but I’d say I read at least half.
I know there are more, but I can’t remember their titles. It’s especially infuriating when you don’t know the author either, but you know that “it was a red book with an MC named Vicki and it had one snobbish kid, too.” If, by some miracle, you know which book I’m vaguely describing, please let me know!
Any book by Carry Slee
If you’re Dutch then you know who Carry Slee is. Good chance she shaped your early teens as well. To be honest, once you’ve read a few of her books, you’ve read all, but teenage me did not care. Some of her books have been made into movies as well! A lot of common themes in her books are relationships, drugs, and alcohol. Looking back on it these books don’t sound like something you would let your 13 year old read, but I guess Dutch culture is weird like that. And I survived reading a ton of her books without following in her MCs’ footsteps!
How Overleef Ik.. / How do I Survive.. – Francine Oomen
Another Dutch favorite is the “Hoe Overleef Ik…” series. It translates to “How do I survive…” This series is fun, because it includes titles like “how do I survive myself,” “how do I survive my first kiss,” and “how do I survive a broken heart.” The books are not traditionally written; they include lists, text logs, and chat windows. Also little notes and other illustrations. These books are especially great for younger teens!