Friday, April 27, 2007

Old Friends, by Susie

I have a huge collection of books. I am sure I'm not alone here.

What I find interesting is the ones from my childhood I choose to keep. Even more, the kids' books I pull out and reread every once in a while.

I certainly read a lot of Trixie Beldon and Nancy Drew in my day and, while I still am fond of mysteries, I have no compulsion to keep those books around, and even less to reread them.

But there's a stash. It includes A TREE GROWS IN BROOKLYN, SWISS FAMILY ROBINSON, MY SIDE OF THE MOUNTAIN, and the MAIDA and MARY JANE books. (Anybody familiar with the last ones? They're very old; I have a MARY JANE printed in 1918, and MAIDA books from the early 20's. The MARY JANE books are basically travelogues for kids; she lives in/traipses through most of Europe. The MAIDA books are about a poor, sickly little rich girl whose powerful father basically arranges all kinds of cool adventures for her.)

I'm not sure what that list of books says about me. That I have a wanderlust, I suppose, though I don't indulge it as much as I like. Do I have a secret adventurous side? Perhaps I only like to read about adventures. But maybe I have it hidden inside of me, locked up because I'm too scared to run with it. Hmm.

Do you have books from your youth that you hang on to/reread? And is there a common thread there?



Keri Ford said...

I was given Shel Silverstein's A Light In the Attic when I was young. I've reread it several times, and a few months back, I bought several other of his poem books. My DH read them to my pregnant belly and now I share them with my little boy.

Betina Krahn said...

Sadly, Suz, I don't have any books from my own childhood. There was a fabulous book of fairytales that was so worn it had no cover-- and I'd give a lot to know what happened to it. I did read Nancy Drew a lot and a number of other things-- but have none of those books now. I loved the mysteries and the books that had young girls doing adventuresome things-- though I can't seem to recall authors or titles!

However I have a number of my sons' books. . . still packed away and waiting for the grands. Hey-- I have grands now. I should go find those boxes, unpack them, and ship them to the kids! Thanks for the jog to memory!

Debra Dixon said...


I love MY SIDE OF THE MOUNTAIN and was quite thrilled to see it in an airport bookstore last week when I was browsing the young adult section.

I loved THE SECRET GARDEN. I still have my collection of the POOH books. (I got my son his own set.)

THE BLACK STALLION, maybe because it was my daddy's book.

Hmmm...I'm seeing a pattern here. It's about people controlling their lives and being unwilling to accept a no. (g)

Kaitlin said...

I still have all of my Little House books, which I still read when the mood strikes.

I still have all of my Trixie Belden, Nancy Drews, and Hardy Boys. The books I've been kicking myself for ever giving away are my Sweet Valley Highs. I keep thinking that if I ever get a niece out of my bro & SIL, I'd love her to read them.

The others I wish I still had are my Betsy & Tacy books (anyone remember them?). I LOVED those books when I was a little girl and felt like I grew up with them, since I read Betsy Gets Married. I still remember the description of Tib's front door. :) I'm 30 and read them for the last time when I was around 12. I miss them.

Isn't nostalgia an interesting feeling? It always makes me wish I could go back to my childhood (just not school).

Anonymous said...

I read all the Trixie Beldon and Nancy Drew books, plus the Bobsey Twins and Cherry Ames. I also fondly remember all the children's classics, i.e. Black Beauty, Treasure Island, etc. I don't have any of those, though (no idea what happened to them!)

The books I did keep--actually, the books I hunted down as an adult--were the Elswyth Thane books I first read when I was about 13. I've got hard copies of her entire Williamsburg series and most of her other titles. I re-read them on a regular basis.

flip said...

Not only do I have books from my childhood. I have books from my mother's childhood that I have passed on to my daughters. All time favorites are Little Women and Little House in the Big Woods. I have romances from early teens, Mary Stewart, Jill Tattersall, Jane Aiken Hodge so forth.

I have a house filled with books, which is how I like i.