Books from the past

Today, I was thinking about some of the books that I read growing up, long before I kept a list of what I read. The list doesn’t seem very long, really, at least the ones that stick out in my mind, but each of those early books were pretty special.

The Nine Planets by Franklyn Mansfield Branley (October 1978)
I think I’ve mentioned this book before, but it was the first book I ever remember checking out of a library, and a book in which I checked out again and again. It got me interested in astronomy and gave me a view of the solar system (and universe) that I’ve held ever since.

David and the Phoenix by Edward Ormondroyd (1958)
Probably the first book of fantasy I ever read. I remember it taking a long time for me to get through this book. I also remember feeling worn out after reading about how David climbed the mountain behind his house. It was an exerting climb and just reading it wore me down. But it was a great book and the Phoenix was a sympathetic “monster”. It hadn’t occurred to me until then that monsters could be friendly.

Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume
The story of the life of Peter Hatcher and his little brother Farley Drexel Hatcher, also know as “Fudge”. I remember loving this book when I read it. It made me laugh. Especially when Fudge eats the turtle, which, looking back on it, maybe wasn’t so funny.

A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L’Engle (1963)
This was such a cool book. I can’t remember when I first read it, but I think I checked it out of the Granada Hills library. I’m not sure what made me check it out, but it must have certainly had something to do with the word “Time” in the title, not to mention the cool cover art on the edition that I read. Possibly the first science fiction I read, but definitely before I knew just what science fiction was.

Race Against Time by Piers Anthony (1985)
I remember reading the first page of this book in the library and not being able to put it down. Many years later, I became a pretty big Piers Anthony fan for a while, but this was before I knew who he was, and in fact, it was before I even bothered to look at who wrote the books that I read. I just remember it being such a cool idea. I think I might have told the plot of the story to friends at school.

The Missing Chums (Hardy Boys 4) by Franlin W. Dixon
I remember it took me a long time to get through this book, but I remember liking it. The boys were much older than me at the time that I read this mystery, and the way that their life was depicted (adventure, fun, mystery, etc.) was the way I thought all boys lives were, once you got “a little older”.

I’m sure there are many that I’m not thinking of right now, but these books were the first to leap to mind.

So what books do you remember really enjoying back when you were little?


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