Top Ten Tuesday: TTT Rewind

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

For this week’s TTT, I’ve gone right back to the start of the list on The Broke and the Bookish, and picked out the very first topic there – Childhood Favourites! I’ll be starting with a handful of picture books that I truly loved as a kid.

March 21st: Top Ten Childhood Favourites

Funny Bones by Janet & Allan Ahlberg

This was a much loved book in the classroom when I was a kid, and I remember reading it as much as I could get my hands on it. I especially liked the dog, but also liked singing along with the music for the animated version. Looking over some of Allan Ahlberg’s other books, too, it’s clear this author penned some books that even now bring back warm, fuzzy memories for me.

We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen, Helen Oxenbury

This charming tale of a family searching for a bear was always a favourite. It was originally released the same year I was born, and I’ve taken any excuse to get it for friends or family with little ones – they love it! The repetition works so well for kids who want to join in, and even now I can still hear parts in my head (we can’t go over it, we can’t go under it, we have to go through it!).

Once There Were Giants by Martin Waddell

This book is really heart-warming, about a baby who lives with giants, until one day she realises…she’s a giant, too! It’s a lovely childhood perspective, and a reminder that one day we all grow up and can do the same things adults can (though any one else feel growing up is way overrated?). Something about this book really resonated with me as a kid, and it’s always stuck with me.

The Jolly Postman or Other People’s Letters by Janet & Allan Ahlberg

One of the reasons this book stands out is because I didn’t actually have this! Instead, it was a book I picked whenever I spent the night with my cousins and was allowed to pick a book to have read for us. And, of course, I’d go through it myself when possible, gently pulling out the various letters to see what these characters were saying to each other. I have a lot of happy memories with this book, and it’s no wonder I still love anything that mixes different fairy tale characters and puts them in the same space!

Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell

Ah, Dear Zoo. Another childhood favourite, another book I’ve picked up for friends’ kids in the past. Because it’s such an excellent book! And yes I was slightly animal-obsessed as a kid, so anything with animals was a good book in my eyes.

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis

This one but also the whole Chronicles of Narnia – I had all the books in a boxset as a gift, and I read them, and reread them, and reread most of them again – there was just something about Narnia and the children that drew me back over and over. I loved this one, and adored the animated film, but I got great joy out from The Magician’s Nephew and The Horse and His Boy, too.

Horrible Histories by Terry Deary

I couldn’t pick just one of this series so yes I am including them all. My brother had a decent set of these books, and once I read them I picked up more from the library. I loved them, and they really sparked off a love of history for me. There was a magazine for a time when I was a kid, too, and I had a big hardback Christmas book. Deary’s writing is engaging, light and funny, getting kids interested in history by showing the darker sides teachers weren’t likely to touch. The TV series came out when I was older, so I never did quite catch that, but I have seen a stage show of it, and it’s great to see the books living on in various forms. Such a great way to get kids interested in history, or to encourage and keep that interest growing.

Girls in Love by Jacqueline Wilson

I can’t remember if I had a voucher or birthday money for this book, but I clearly remember standing in WHSmith and trying to pick out a book – books were expensive, and usually we got them from the library, so the process of choosing my very own book to take home was always a bit of a process, because it felt like so much was riding on it. But I loved Wilson, and this was a treat, and when I picked up Girls in Love I just felt something drawing me to it. Then I turned the book over to read the back and…Ellie. It was very, very rare I came across my own name in a book. I was sold. It was probably the most ‘grown up’ book I’d read by that point, and maybe just a touch too old for me, but I loved it, and reread it so often my copy started falling apart.

Love You to Death by Meg Cabot

By the time I picked this up, I’d read some of Cabot’s other books including The Princess Diaries and All-American Girl, and liked them well enough, but this one (and the Missing series) were ones I instantly adored. It was my first real introduction to the idea of Paranormal Romance. I still have my copy of this specific book here, too.

Northern Lights by Philip Pullman

I loved this trilogy. It felt so different and fresh and of course I was mildly obsessed with the dæmons. I didn’t read it until I’d started comp, and picked it up on the recommendation of a friend, but I instantly fell in love with this world. It was also around the time I was questioning the things I’d been taught about religion in the Church in Wales school I’d attended, and no doubt this book really helped me realise some things. Excellent books that tackle some really interesting, dark concepts while managing not to talk down to the target audience.

It’s so fun going back through childhood favourites – are there any books from your own childhood that have always stuck with you? What did you do for this week’s TTT? Let me know in the comments.


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