Posted by: chartroose | May 13, 2008

Weekly Geeks # 3 – Fond Memories of Childhood Books


This week’s theme is going to be really fun because the children’s books I once enjoyed are numerous.   Of course, I won’t be able to recall even half of them — just the most influential or the ones that have a memorable story behind them.  Here goes:

Preschool & Early Elementary
     1. 1st book – Green Eggs & Ham.  How I loved that Sam I Am!  I was about 3 or so and would sit on my potty chair yelling it out so that my poor beleagured mother could hear and exclaim about my oratory and readatory talent.
     2. Favorite Dr. Seuss “I Can Read” book – Go Dog Go!  I loved the greenish-bluish and pinkish colors in the illustrations.  I also liked the picture of dogs playing in one of the bluish trees.

     3. Favorite Poetry Book – When We Were Very Young by A. A. Milne.  I read it over and over again until I knew all the poems by heart.

     4. Millions of Cats – I was into cats big time.  This one had great illustrations.

     5. Edith, the Lonely Doll books– I still like to read these now.

     6. Madeline series – Made me want to be a French schoolgirl.

     Grades 3 & 4
     1. The Boxcar Children – I think I read every one of these several times.

     2. The Wizard of Oz Series – They were given to me by my aunt, and I have them stashed away in a special place.
     3. Roald Dahl – I probably read all of them.  My favorites were Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and The Witches.
     4. Winnie the Pooh – My favorite kid’s books of all time, and my favorite characters of all time.  I’m a major Piglet fan, and Eeyore’s really cool too!

     5. Harriet the Spy – This needs no explanation.

     6. Walkabout – A really cool book about some English kids going “walkabout” with an aborigine kid.  It has always stuck in my mind.

     7.  Don Robertson’s Morris Bird books — My Dad found them in a used bookstore.  They moved me so much that they got me started on my 5th & 6th grade “sad book” phase.  It looks like The Greatest Thing Since Sliced Bread has been reissued.  Woot!  The other two in the trilogy are:  The Sum and Total of Now and The Greatest Thing That Almost Happened. 

Grades 5 & 6
     1. The Lord Of the Rings – I read these over and over again until I knew several passages by heart.  I remain absolutely certain that I’ve got Elvish blood in me!
     2. Robert Heinlein – I read so many of his books that I can’t even remember them all.  My favorite is Citizen of the Galaxy.

     3. John Christopher’s “Tripods Trilogy,” The White Mountains, The City of Gold and Lead and The Pool of Fire.  I reread these several years ago and was still quite impressed.  


     4. Lord of the Flies – I read this in the 5th grade and was enthralled.  This led me into my coming-of-age phase where I read I Am the Cheese, The Chocolate War, A Separate Peace, The Outsiders, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter and, of course, The Catcher in the Rye.  I haven’t outgrown this phase yet!



  1. Go, Dog, Go!! Very cool! I bought a brand new copy of this not too long ago, because it was always my favorite. I was also partial to “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish.” 🙂


  2. I loved “One Fish…” too! “Put Me in the Zoo” was another favorite. Those books were so much fun.

  3. […] unknown wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptThis week’s theme is going to be really fun because the children’s books I enjoyed are numerous. Of course, I won’t be able to recall even half of them — just the most influential or the ones that have a memorable story behind them. … […]

  4. OOoo! I wish I could remember more! I’ve been reading so many of these posts that I keep having ‘OH YEA! I read that!’ epiphanies. I think. You have a lot I know I haven’t read, tho. Also, Walkabout reminds me of a movie: The Rabbit Proof Fence: have you seen it?

  5. P.D.Eastman – wow! We’re big fans in my house of his/her books. Our favourite is Big Dog Little Dog with Fred and Ted.

    Sam I Am too, and I love the way that the character who is initially so opposed to eating green eggs and ham is eventually won round.

  6. Hi Care — This stupid blog marked you as spam. Can you believe it? I only just now recovered your post. Anyway, I’m glad you’re here, and I’m going to have to see if I can take a peek at that movie.

    Thanks, Stephen! I don’t think I’ve read “Big Dog, Little Dog.” Hmmm……

  7. I LOVED the Boxcar Children books as well. I too belonged to a family of two girls and two boys, and I would sometimes imagine that if we were orphaned (obviously I did not seriously consider this, not to worry) that we would also find a way to get along so well and survive on our own.

  8. OOh and I of course also loved Dr. Seuss. My younger brother, who was absolutely not a reader by any means, was obsessed with The Foot Book, and I read it to him probably about a million times. And Green Eggs and Ham was the first book I read by myself… my parents thought I had it memorized, but they later figured out that I was actually reading it!

  9. You listed some great boks here. I read a few of those after I was fairly grown up. In India, British authors were more popular and easily available when I was younger. Now you can get almost anything.

    Childhood Memories

  10. Thank You Heather and Gautami! Heather, we should try the boxcar children again and see if they’ve kept their appeal. My older daughter’s favorite Dr. Seuss book was “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” I had to read it to her all year long for about a year until it mysteriously disappeared. Hmm…I wonder what happened?

    Gautami, my favorite childhood author continues to be the great A. A. Milne, who was born in London. He was a math genius and went to Trinity College in Cambridge. I’m going to have to head over to your website and see the British kid book authors you love!

  11. enjoyed reading your post!

  12. Great list of books. I really need to read more Milne. And Lord of the Flies!

  13. Thanks, Juli!

    Yes, Nymeth, try “Lord of the Flies.” It’s a quick, easy and disturbing read.

  14. Hey, I have a question that has nothing to do with this post. How in the world are you able to get pictures of books in your sidebar? (Like the currently reading part.) I have tried so many different ways but cannot make it happen. Admittedly, I am the complete opposite of computer savvy, so it’s surprising even to me that I got this blog up and running at all, but I’d really like to put book covers instead of just listing the titles under my “Currently Reading” header. Let me know if you can be of any help… thanks!!

  15. Yeah, Heather, it’s pretty complicated. With the new update, it’s even harder than it was before. Go into My Dashboard – Design -Widgets. Create a text widget to hold your pictures.

    Get out of the Widget application and go find your picture. I had a terrible time getting “We Disappear” to show. I finally had to create a new post and upload just the picture. Once I had the picture uploaded, I right-clicked on it and higlighted the URL and pasted it into the Widget. Then I went back and deleted the post.

    I know, it’s a mess. If you have trouble with this, log in to and click on FAQ’s. They probably have a bunch of info about sidebar pictures. I hope this helps a little bit.

  16. I never read Madeline when I was young, but read it to my daughter now and just love the books. Thanks for the reminder to take that one out of the bookshelf tonight to read!

  17. Stephanie,

    I loved Miss Clavel!

  18. Ooooh, we have lots of books in common — including Go Dog Go, which I love so much that I even incorporated it into my blog design. 🙂 I also read everything Heinlein, and the Tripods trilogy too. But I’ve never understood the attraction of Winnie the Pooh.

  19. Millions of Cats! I loved that book!

    I really like how you have yours arranged.

  20. I remember really enjoying Citizen of the Galaxy. And Go Dog, Go was one I made a point of buying for my son. I’m hoping he will grow up to be a reader (I’m doing all I can to ensure it) and I’ll get to read some of my less girly favourites with him over the years.

  21. Thanks, Julie Dew & Kerry!

    I had no idea that so many people were into “Go Dog Go!” What is it about that book? It has to be the colors — at least that’s what attracted me.

    Dew, “Millions of Cats” is so much fun. My daughters loved it too.

    Julie & Kerry,
    I wonder how many “advanced readers” like us started getting into science fiction/fantasy in grades 5 or 6. There must be something that clicks in our brains during that time. Kerry, the biggest guarantor of becoming a lifelong reader is having a parent who reads to you, so you’re doing exactly the right thing!

  22. I didn’t get into sci fi until 8th grade, actually, and I remember it very well. We had a free reading period in English, but there wasn’t much to choose from on the cart. I picked out Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Mysteries because I liked mysteries, not because I knew anything about sci fi. They were short stories about Elijah Bailey and R. Daneel and from the first page I was instantly & irretrievably hooked. For the next few years I read nothing but Asimov, Heinlein, Clarke, Niven, and John Varley — geez, I should have included this in my own Weekly Geeks post.

    On the other hand I see that many Weekly Geeks didn’t discover Nancy Drew until 5th or 6th grade and I remember reading them in 2nd grade, so maybe I was advanced after all.

  23. […] […]

  24. Julie,

    Of course you were advanced! A lot of my friends were into Nancy Drew in the 5th and 6th grade, and I just couldn’t stand those books! They were way too simple. I should’ve read them in the 2nd grade, like you, although I might not have understood them then.

    I was very sad when Arthur C. Clarke died a couple of months ago — “Childhood’s End” was such a superb novel! I think I was in 7th grade when I read that.

    And, Asimov, man I loved him too, although I can’t remember reading him until I was closer to high school, probably around 8th grade.

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