Monday, September 27, 2010

Minxes' Favourite Childhood Books - Part 2

Following on from last Monday's post, here's a second meander down memory lane...

Jo. P: At the risk of being predictable, I have to mention two Enid Blyton books first - as very little girls, my sister and I had a beloved and dog eared copy of her fairy stories which we knew cover to cover. My sis still has it somewhere, covered in our childish scrawled notes to each other. Just looking at the cover makes me smile even now.

Growing up a little, it was the Naughtiest Girl in the School that was constantly under my pillow - what does that say about me I wonder? I haven't changed a bit!

Whizzing forward a few years, there are two books which I can't miss out.
The first arrived in our house in a bag destined for the jumble, and I snaffled it.
"The family nobody wanted," by Helen Doss is a true story about a couple who couldn't have children so decided to adopt one - or twelve, as it turned out in the end. It's a gorgeous heart warming story, one which I read to destruction and I was gutted when the book got lost over the years. I never forgot it though, and my lovely husband scored himself huge brownie points a couple of Christmases back by surprising me with a replacement copy. I still love it now.

And last but not least, one of my all time favourite books, 'My family and other animals' by Gerald Durrell. I love and adore this book, along with the others in the series. It makes me laugh out loud, and just completely enchants and comforts me every time I pick it up - which I still do, often.

Jo C:

I've read most of the books the others have mentioned, but no one has yet mentioned the wonderful Judy Blume. I spent hours reading her books, wondering what on earth it was Margaret was fiddling around with in "Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret" and back then there wasn't the internet so I could find out what was going on. Don't worry, I did manage to work it out in the end :-)

Then I also read the very moving "Tiger Eyes" which followed a girl's journey after her father is violently killed.

I devoured "Forever" about a teenage couple who had sex for the first time. Judy Blume's books got me through more than one teenage drama of my own!

But the books I really remember and the ones who opened my eyes to romantic fiction were those early ones by Jilly Cooper. To begin with, I scoured our local library for all the 'single name' books such as "Harriet". I adored this book and still think it would've made a great M&B. I defy any woman not to identify totally with Harriet, she's such a 'real' character.

But the series I blame totally for my addiction to the romance genre is the 'Riders' series. The glamour of the characters, the settings and the very (to me, anyway!) upmarket world of horses took me away from many a wet and windy northern England day.

I know he is the archetypical bad boy, but who could read the series without falling madly in love with Rupert Campbell-Black, the absolute ultimate in alpha men? I certainly couldn't. If you haven't already, I urge you to take a visit to the Cotswold countryside and enjoy the humour and wonderful storytelling ability that is pure Jilly Cooper.

And yes, I did read these books as a child (and enjoyed the TV series, too) and no, my mother had no clue what was between the pages :-)


Lorraine said...

I got all my sex education from Judy Blume! From Enid Blyton to Jilly Cooper - quite an eclectic mix!

Lacey Devlin said...

I'm never read a Judy Blume, isn't that sad? It's great to see the covers of Enid Blyton again :)

Maya Blake said...

Jo P, your books sound so heartwarming and how adorable for you hubby to get the book for you! N

Jo C, gosh, you teenage reading materials were shocking! Just kidding. I got into a Jackie Collins phase myself at some point. All grist for the mill, I say ;)

Joanne Coles said...

I did too, Lorraine! I knew nothing before Judy educated me.

Aw, Lacey, hunt some out and pretend you're a teen again, they're fab! Actually a few titles were a bit dated when I read them, I wonder what teenagers would make of them now.

One of my aunts leant me some Jackie Collins when I was about 14. Well, I think she actually leant them to my mum but she didn't read them but I did! If she knew what was in them, I'm sure she wouldn't have let me get my hands on them!!

penandpaints said...

I loved Enid Blyton too, 'The Faraway tree' was one of my favourites. I still read them now and again to relive happy memories I think! I just posted my top 10 and Enid was in there.

Thank goodness for Judy Blume! I loved 'Forever', I read it as 13 I think, but had the feeling I probably shouldn't mention it to my mum at the time, haha.

Lacey Devlin said...

Haha! I was banned from M&B until I was in my late teens which was painful because I kept stumbling over boxes full of them. Double standards! I don't think I would have had a hope of getting to Jackie Collins lol

Suzanne Ross Jones said...

Some terrific choices, there. I've never read Judy Blume (and now I'm wondering what I've missed) but loved Enid Blyton and Jilly Cooper.