Tuesday, February 24, 2009

6 books that make me happy

Ooh, I like this meme. These are my comfort reading, mostly books I first read as a child.

Look Through My Window by Jean Little. The first Jean Little book I read. I can remember exactly how I felt reading it, the sun shining through the window. This is my favorite summer book. It's a perfect story of friendship, growing up, and poetry. I never connected to any other "young adult" or "realistic" books growing up, mostly because I could never (and still can't) relate to any of the characters. But I could imagine - and desperately wanted - to have a friend like Kate. And I felt a lot of kinship with Emily. I read this at least once every summer.
The Church Mouse series by Graham Oakley. I adore all of these, don't have a particular favorite. I can spend hours giggling over the detailed pictures, the sly jokes, and expressions, long-suffering Samson, bombastic Humphrey, sturdy Arthur...you get the idea.

The River at Green Knowe by L. M. Boston. This is not the cover I have - mine is a jacket-less, much-taped, old green ex-library copy. The first L. M. Boston book I read was Stranger at Green Knowe, generally considered her finest, but River is my favorite. I love the episodic adventures, the wonder and excitement of the river at night, the magic and mystery of Green Knowe in the moonlight. The huge map, the shrinking scene, the winged horses....I love them all.

Ozma of Oz by L. Frank Baum. I like to re-read all the Oz books regularly and they're all very comforting, but I think this is my favorite. I was very excited when I discovered a Recorded Books audio of it in my library system, read by John McDonough. I'm not sure why this is my favorite...I think it's the dinner-pail tree that resonates with me.
Tangle and the Firesticks by Benedict Blathwayt. This is a rather odd picturebook that I loved as a child. Small furry creatures live in a wood. Tangle, a clumsy trouble-maker is banished, but after many adventures returns in time to save his tribe. I got my current copy - a beautiful hardback from bookmooch.com, much to my delight. I like this mainly because I read it as a child, and because I like small people books.

Bill Bergson and the White Rose Rescue by Astrid Lindgren. I have a much nicer cover of this, it's really purple shades, denoting moonlight, rather than neon pink. Anyways, it's kind of a toss-up between this and Ronia which is my favorite Lindgren book. But I think it might be this one. I love the small town adventure feel, the kids carrying out their elaborate games at night, the real tension of the mystery, and the happy and exuberant ending. It's perfect - and it reads well in Swedish, too....


Infant Bibliophile said...

I'll have to check these out! I left an "award" for you on my site. Apologies for the chain letter nature of these things.

Anamaria (bookstogether) said...

Better than Ronia? I must read it! Although not in Swedish. Also the Lucy M. Boston books. Really, everything on your list sounds lovely. Will post mine today!

Jennifer said...

Well, "better" is probably not the best word. They're both very different - Ronia is a retelling of the traditional Robber's Tale while Bill Bergson is in the juvenile detective genre. They both evoke very different feelings. Yes, if you have not read Lucy Boston you should do so very soon! I had a hard time deciding on a favorite for her.