Saturday, December 19, 2015

Favorite Books to Give a Child

Here I go again, as the Saturday Whore, veering off the exact nature of the topic at hand. Hey, that's how I roll, folks!

As a kid, I devoured any and all books and reading material. I HAVE to have something to read at all times or...dire things happen. No, I don't exactly turn into a Gremlin but I do get bored! So I read the usual Heidi, Swiss Family Robinson, all the series from Bobbsey Twins to Nancy Drew to Cherry Ames to Trixie Belden, plus Tom Swift, Tom Corbett and Rick Brant. And some older series of my grandparents' youth along the way. The Dare Boys and Bobby of the Labrador were big in our house...and there was a book, whose title is now sadly lost to me, about the French and Indian War, and a gallant young (fictional) backwoodsman who ended up in every campaign and massacre and hot spot. Oddly he met no girls, which even at that age I found to be a huge plot hole...

The classic books of my youthful reading became conflated in my head with the movies. So when I say Heidi, I see Shirley Temple. The Swiss Family Robinson is forever the Disney family to me, with John Mills, Dorothy McGuire, James MacArthur as Fritz (had a bigtime crush on him for a time), a tiger in a pit and a girl riding a zebra (I was so jealous).

If I was going to settle on one book, it'd probably be the Howard Pyle version of Robin Hood. There again, I see Errol Flynn, who will forever and always be my ultimate version of the Earl of Locksley.

However, when this topic was announced, I immediately thought of  some lovely illustrated books from when my daughters were young, so those are going to be my actual recommendation. In our house we still read Jan Brett's The Wild Christmas Reindeer every year at this season. Her Country Mouse Town Mouse was also a big favorite year round. with stunning illustrations. We were also very wrapped up in the Angelina Ballerina series, including Angelina's Christmas. There's also Tosca's Christmas, by Matthew Sturgis, with great cat illustrations from Anne Mortimer.

The Dinotopia series by James Gurney was also a hit at our house...

Happy holidays to one and all!

1 comment:

  1. Oh, Errol as Robin and Basil as Guy. Love that movie! Eugene Pallette totally stole the show as Friar Tuck.