by Stegosaurus Wilde
So many good books, so little blog space. But let’s get right to it!
5 – Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Matilda, both by Roald Dahl
I think I’m just going to cheat from now on, and I’m starting with this post. Except for the other posts I’ve cheated in. Ahem. Anyway, I lost count of the number of times I read these two books as a kid. I used to dream of exploring a factory like Willy Wonka’s with unlimited access to chocolate. Pardon me while I wipe the drool from my chin. And when I read Matilda, I am only slightly embarrassed to admit that I tried to be telekinetic for far longer than was age appropriate. I was so sure that I could move things with my mind. I was wrong, of course. But it didn’t stop me from trying! I guess it’s an “A” for effort, if lacking in execution.
4 – Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt
When I first read this book I thought about how amazing it would be to live forever. But as I reread it over and over again, I began to identify more with Winnie’s decision. How sad it would be to watch everyone you loved grow old and die, to have the world change on you so quickly. Each member of the Tuck family handles their lives differently, highlighting how different personalities might cope with living forever. It’s fascinating and endearing, and it still makes me think to this day.
3 – Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
Oh, Anne with an “e,” how I love thee! Your unquenchable spirit, your silly drama, your loyalty to your friends. Your story is one that is sweet and satisfying, but never saccharin. I will love you always.
2 – The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
Mary’s transformation from spoiled, pale girl to loving niece endeared me to her, but it was really Dickon who I loved. I wished his character would come to life so many times as a child, bringing his sweet animals and garden magic with him. In fact, I conjure up a wistful sigh anytime I think about it.
1 – A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L’Engle
I have mentioned on this blog before how I identified with Meg, who was so stubborn and could never see her own worth. And then there was the sheer scale of the story as the children and the friendly aliens traveled through the universe on the folds of time and space. That combined with the battle of good and evil where what was at stake was no more important than—or less crucial than—one person’s father. It is a beautiful and fantastical story, but so real. So, so real.