Six For Sunday | Books From My Childhood

Six for Sunday is a weekly book meme run by Steph at A Little but a Lot, and this week it’s books from my childhood! I’ve picked a selection that stick out in my memory.

I’m deliberately choosing not to mention my childhood-defining book because it’s written by That Author, and while it probably shaped me and fundamentally affected me more than any other book or series, I’m not giving it clout. Trans rights are human rights.

Dogger – Shirley Hughes

Yes this is a real book. It’s got a happy ending but for any child with a favourite teddy, it’s a roller coaster.

(My mum used to work in a nursery and a few years ago it turned out she’d never heard of this book. She thought I was making it up. On a trip to Waterstones I discovered it and pulled it out of the shelf while triumphantly announcing DOGGER, which I shortly realised afterwards was perhaps not the best idea in the middle of a shop.

Old Bear Stories – Jane Hissey

The literary equivalent of your mum coming round when you’re sad and giving you a cuddle. I adore these books, and the TV series, and as soon as my daughter is old enough to be read a book without taking it from me and stuffing the pages into her mouth, I’ll be reading her these.

Animal Ark –

These books are incredible and I’m seriously tempted to rebuy the whole series “for my daughter” and then read them all.

My Secret Unicorn – Linda Chapman

My sister had basically this entire series and they were really Not My Thing at that stage of my life (Unicorns? Could not be me) but they were oddly compelling and totally wholesome so I stole them and read them under the covers.

Animal Stories – Enid Blyton

I loved animals growing up – still do, in fact – and I loved Enid Blyton, so this was a match made in heaven. The children who lived at Green Meadowsd had SO MANY PETS and they were all SO WELL BEHAVED and it’s so WHOLESOME.

The 7 in 1 Collection – Enid Blyton

For a child this was an absolute UNIT of a book, and I loved it. The House at the Corner in particular I read again and a gain – the characters were so much Older and more Grown Up than I was and it felt so incredibly edgy to nine-year-old me.

I’ve had a look at some lists and spotted some books I’d totally forgotten about, so I’m going to be filling up a classic bookshelf for my baby. Have you read any of mine? Let me know!

Top Ten Tuesday | Books I Read Because They Were Recommended To Me

I have two main sources of book recommendations: Book Twitter and my mum. This list is mostly a mixture of the two, with some other people thrown in for good measure.

All The Light We Cannot See – Anthony Doerr

A recommendation from my mother. Didn’t do a huge amount for me, but she enjoyed it.

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine – Gail Honeyman

My mum’s friend insisted she read this and loaned her a copy, and my mum loved it so much she went out and bought her own. Then insisted I read it as well.

Fair play Maw, it was EXCELLENT.

Fault Lines – Doug Johnstone

I put a call out on Twitter before a trip to Waterstones one day looking for recs and then used a random number generator to pick one. Fault Lines was the winner. I enjoyed it so much I gave it to my mum. Our recommending relationship goes two ways.

On The Road – Jack Kerouac

Fun fact: my auntie teaches American Literature and Beat Poetry in the US, did her PhD thesis on Kerouac and is a pretty well-known voice on the subject. My granny famously called the Beats “hippy muck”. Between them they got me to read On The Road.

Magician – Raymond E. Feist

This is one of my husband’s favourite books (he’s a huge high fantasy dork) and he kept suggesting it to me. I’ve read it in bits and pieces because…high fantasy usually isn’t my thing. When I have the time and inclination I will go back and read it all, in order, properly.

A Quiet Kind of Thunder – Sara Barnard

I think Sara Barnard must be one of the most beloved UKYA authors, so when I was just getting into the scene her books were among the first I went looking for. AQKOT is so sweet and relatable and relevant, and I can see why people love her so much.

The Fandom – Anna Day

The Fandom is a book that came highly, highly recommended from Twitter before it was even released, so obviously I got a copy pretty soon after it was released.

Bit of a lesson in tempering my expectations because I feel like the hype let it down – it was good, but the hype combined with the premise (I love a bit of fandom) meant I was expecting it to change my world, and it didn’t.

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas – Hunter S. Thompson

Fear and Loathing came to me via my Advanced Higher English teacher. I wanted to write my dissertation on On The Road but I had to pick at least two novels, and when I was stumped for a second choice this was her suggestion.

I can’t remember her name but shout out to you, teacher-who-wasn’t-the-one-obsessed-with-Shakespeare.

Lion – Saloo Brierly

Lion was another rec from my mum, and the little quote on the front got me. Once I’d started reading it got me even more. By the end I didn’t know whether to punch the air or cry.

The Loneliest Girl in the Universe – Lauren James

Another one Book Twitter got me all excited about (although if it hadn’t, the cover would have sold me on it). Also taught me an important lesson: nothing ruins a good twist like everyone talking about how good the twist was.

While we’re at it, REC ME A BOOK. I have an outlandishly large TBR and it needs to be bigger.

Top Ten Tuesday | Books With Super Long Titles

Long book titles are fun! I find them more intriguing than short or one-word titles. I’m a million times more curious to read The Miseducation of Cameron Post than I am Atonement.

I decided I’d omit anything with a colon in the title, because that feels like cheating, and I haven’t written my usual wee paragraph because…well, they’re all fairly self-explanatory. Onward!

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time – Mark Haddon

All God’s Children Need Travelling Shoes – Maya Angelou

It’s OK, I’m Wearing Really Big Knickers – Louise Rennison

Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret – Judy Blume

Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe – Fannie Flagg

Ivy Aberdeen’s Letter to the World – Ashley Herring Blake

Chocolate Mousse for Greedy Goose – Julia Donaldson

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas – Hunter S. Thompson

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance – Robert M. Pirsig

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams

Going to be browsing everyone’s TTT list this week for some additions to my TBR. Long titles forever!