Monday, June 7, 2010

Books from my childhood days

Today I had an idea to write up a post on some of my first books. Yup that's right. I'm gonna write about books from my childhood! The books I had when I was a mere pre-kindergartener, a kindergartener and the books I read when I was in primary school - from age 7 until 12.

Ages 1 and 2
Didn't think I read.

Age 3
I think one of my first books was about animals in the Ladybird talkabout series. (pic below)

Age 4
Not sure what books I had then.

Age 5
My mom bought me my first Ladybird Peter and Jane book. (pic above) The day she bought the book, she taught me to read it when we arrived back home. I think we were at a small bookshop together and she had asked me if I wanted the book! I must have nodded yes and she bought it for me.

Ages 6 and 7
Read more about Peter and Jane. :)

Age 8
More Ladybird books for me! At this age, I read Aesop's Fables and lots of fairy tales such as Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, Peter Pan, etc. I was also hooked on the Disney cartoon versions.

Ages 9 and 10
The start of discovering books by Enid Blyton as well as abridged versions of classics like A Little Princess, Dracula and Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. My first Enid Blyton book: Billy-Bob Tales. My sister bought it from a second-hand bookstore. Then I went on to read Blyton's other stories on animals, pixies, goblins, toys coming to life and so on. I was so dying to meet a real pixie at that time.

My sister then introduced me to the Wishing-Chair and Naughtiest Girl books. After that, I also started reading Mr Galliano's Circus and Those Dreadful Children. I also read Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl, The Bear Nobody Wanted by Janet and Allan Ahlberg, Dancing Peel by Lorna Hill and Three For Pack Holiday by Ailsa Brambleby. It's now difficult to get hold of books by the last two authors.

Age 11
I was on my way to becoming a voracious reader. I devoured more of Enid Blyton books: The Five Find-Outers series, Barney, Roger and Diana mysteries, and St Clare's school stories. (pic below) My sisters were the only ones giving me books. One gave me Enid Blytons and another one bought me illustrated classics.

My sister also gave me this beautiful book on stories by William Shakespeare, among her efforts to make sure that I read something else besides Enid Blyton. Really, I did not have many reading choices then. My mom rarely bought books for me since Peter and Jane! LOL.

But still, I managed to read a bit of this and a bit of that. I read some books in the Sweet Valley series, The Babysitters Club, one Nancy Drew book, one Hardy Boys book, a few from the Fear Street series and one Alfred Hitchcock's The Three Investigators. There was no such thing as reading the entire series of something.

These are among the books that I have read before:

Also not forgetting my favourite comics characters, Calvin and Hobbes who never fail to make me chuckle every time I read about them. They are definitely some of the best books to have on the bookshelves!

Age 12
An advice expert from one advice column in the newspaper suggested to one of the letter-writers (a student) to read a variety of story books. Huh! Back then, I couldn't think of reading anything else besides Enid Blyton. I was narrow-minded back then but luckily I managed to like The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis, Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce and of course, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling! (pic above)

I was also heading towards my teenage years and my reading tastes revolved around teen books I thought were cool like Sweet Valley Junior High (created by Francine Pascal). Anyway, I don't think I read much that time as I had to prepare for a major public examination. Reading took a backseat for a while as I concentrated on improving myself in Science and Maths!

Well, this post is not a complete record of everything I read in my kiddie days but it's the most that I can remember. I've also given away many old books so they aren't around to remind me of what I read back then. If only I had kept a record somewhere but I don't think I thought that far ahead when I was younger!

I'm going to continue with another post on books I read during my teenage years. So look out for it!

***If you have your own post about your childhood books, do leave them in the comments section. I'd love to read them too!

Other childhood bookshelves: Ruz's Bookshelves, The Book Coop


  1. Interesting post, it really gets you thinking back doesn't it? I loved reading as a kid but I wasn't very adventurous, I used to do a lot of re-reading.

    I recognise some of the books in your list - the Enid Blyton ones definitely and some others are familiar but I do not remember reading them.

    I can't remember much what I was reading when I was 5 and under, apart from Spot the dog. Hmm I'll have to look back through memory lane too. I've been wanting to explore my childhood favourites for a while now -

    I remember reading Stig of the Dump in infant school when I was about 6, and I have recently got Arabel's Raven by Joan Aiken out from the library to re-read - first read when I was 8-9.


  2. I've had read the naughtiest girl in school and it was my favourite!

  3. Josette, I hope you don't mind but you've inspired me to write a little blog about my own childhood books. It's really interesting looking back.

  4. Whoaaaa!!!!

    Nice post! I'll do one too DEFINITELY! =)I started off with Peter and Jane 1a. This is Peter. This is Jane. And who CAN NOT read Enid Blyton's rite? ;)

  5. Fiona: LOl, I couldn't remember much about what I read below 5 years old. Luckily there are a some books at home with dates written in them. If only I (or someone else) wrote out the dates in every book, it'd be so much easier to track.

    Haha! Stig of the Dump sounds hilarious, I wonder what it's about??

    Oh yeah, you should definitely do a post on your childhood books!! I would love to read it! :)

    Darlyn: The Naughtiest Girl in School books are wonderful, aren't they?? I loved them, still do!

    Ruz: omg, I was laughing at your recitation of the Peter and Jane books. Come to think of it, they're actually quite dull. A LOT of repetition but that's how we learnt from it. :)

    Yes, yes go do your post, quick!

  6. Love this post!
    I don't think so I really remember the 1st book I read cause my mom keeps on showering me with it when I was little. :)

  7. The girl on the cover of the Nautiest School Girl kind of looks like Britney Spears in her early days! LOL

    Loved this post! :)

  8. Posted!!!! ^__^

  9. This is a great idea. I enjoyed this post. I love seeing what adult readers read as children and growing up with books. I have a semi-similar type post in the about me of the page. I couldn't remember the detail you seem to have though, it's great you have remembered so much


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