Can you remember the the first book you ever read, or ever had read to you? No? Me neither. I do remember the little beauty, pictured, which my mother used to loan from the local library and was the staple of many happy pre-school bedtime stories. It's the story of the eponymous Henry, his dog, Laird Angus McAngus, and their adventures aroung the snowy town in which they live. It covers caves and bears and general adventure in about two hundred words and a lot of big pictures. Left is a photo of my copy of the book. Not the one from my childhood, but one I liberated (bought off the internet) from the Shoreline library in Seattle. Innit funny how some things stay with you? Isn't it great that you can track them down and buy them from wherever they are lying forgotten in the world?
As I grew older my tastes followed the traditional routes and I fell in love with Enid Blyton's Famous Five and Secret Seven books. My favourites of hers were the Adventure series. Island of Adventure.. Castle of Adventure.. with Jack and Lucy Ann and Pip and Dinah and Kiki the Parrot. All highly unlikely, but great fun. When I'd done reading all these several times over, I raided my sister's collection of Mallory Towers and St Clare's girls-school adventures. (I wonder if J.K. Rowling read those...?).
I understand films have been made of a couple of my childhood choices. The Secret of Skelton Island which is a tale from my all time fave Alfred Hitchcock and the Three Investigators series. Also The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper, which by all accounts is a bit of a stinker.
There have been some successes is turning the books of my childhood into films. I was a huge fan of the books of S.E. Hinton. All three of her American gang books (That Was Then, This is Now; The Outsiders; Rumblefish) have been filmed. With Rumblefish accorded cult classic status.
Anyone remember reading any of these? Anyone got any other favourites*?
The Silver Sword by Ian Serraillier
Tom's Midnight Garden by Phillipa Pearce
Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome
Carrie's War by Nina Bawden
Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, Penningtons Seventeenth Summer, Marianne Dreams.....