World Book Day: What was your favorite childhood read?

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I have been a voracious reader for as long as I can remember. Even as a child, any book I could get my hands on, I would read. I could never get enough. However, if you asked me as an adult what my favorite book  was, my answer would change day by day because they’d always be something newer on the horizon that might just be ‘The one’.

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However, back when I was around age seven, I was given a dog-eared copy of C.S. Lewis’ book ‘The Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe’ and yes- I’m going to say it – it changed my life.

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This was ‘The One’ – my first love affair with a book. I inhaled it from cover to cover in one read. I cried intermittently at various stages of the story and wept buckets at the crescendo; wanting to step inside and take control of the story because I just couldn’t bear to be a witness of  events that were out of my control-yet paradoxically, neither could I step away from it  for more than the moment  it took to take a steadying breath, in order to fortify myself  because I just had to know whether things would become better. I still vividly remember my shaking hands as I turned each page, catching myself holding my breath and finally praying my hardest for the happily ever after that I had to have.

 

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That book both nourished me and yet traumatized me in ways that I cannot adequately describe, and it stayed with me and will stay with me for my lifetime. narnia-19

I cannot isolate one particular reason for why this book touched my soul in the way it did. I guess I feel it was a perfect blend of elements: the four child characters of which little Lucy was the main protagonist maybe? I had three older brothers and I felt her pain at not ever being taken seriously enough. Or perhaps it was the winter setting? Winter had always been my favorite season. The battle of good versus evil? For sure, that was an element because I was hoping against hope that good would win out in the end. But whatever the reasoning of the head, this book touched my heart in so many wonderful ways that day, and I have reread it a couple of times since. And each time, it still hits the spot.

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Now I know this book is part of the ‘Chronicles of Narnia’ series. I have read the first book ‘The Magicians Nephew’ and also  the third book ‘The Horse and his Boy’, but iI have yet to complete the rest. I have the set waiting patiently for me to pick them up, and I know I will eventually. Just not yet, but I will.

Now if there is a person the this big wide world who has not yet heard of, or read the ‘Chronicles Of Narnia’, or ‘The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe’ in particular, here is the official synopsis:

‘NARNIA…the land beyond the wardrobe door,  secret place frozen in eternal winter…a magical country waiting to be set free.

Lucy is the first to find the secret of the wardrobe in the Professor’s mysterious old house.At first, her brothers and sister don’t believe her when she tells of her visit to the land of Narnia. But soon Edmund, then Peter and Susan step through the wardrobe themselves. In Narnia they find a country buried under the evil enchantment of the White Witch. When they meet the Great Lion, Aslan, they realize they’ve been called to a great adventure and bravely join the battle to free Narnia from the Witches sinister spell.’

I do hope that I can entice at least one person who reads this blog, to either pick up this book for themselves or buy it for a child that they know would love it. There is not a book on earth that I would offer a higher recommendation for than this!

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So moving on to my adult favorites I have my own story to tell…

I once applied for a job in a bookstore back in England while I was at college. I had a great interview and everything was going really well until I was asked the $60,000 question: ‘What is your favorite book?’

My mind went blank. I stuttered and stammered, and came up empty. My only answer was “I haven’t found it yet’. I asked what their most popular book was. The answer was ‘The Davinci Code’. I hadn’t read it. How embarrassing. You see there was so much hype when that book was published that like ’50 Shades’ the whole world went crazy buying it. So I didn’t.Just because I didn’t want to be a sheep. #fool

I mean, it was still selling millions back then, even though it had been published several years before my interview, but I was my own worst enemy and refused to jump on that bandwagon. To my own expense. I did not get offered the job, despite the fact that I was reading four or so books per week. Maybe he had other better contenders, but personally I think I blew it on that one question. And so, I went right out and bought that Dan Brown book.

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I read it cover to over pretty much overnight. And guess what? It’s the best book I’ve ever read.


I finally met ‘The One, and  although it was much too late to swing that job. But then I’m an optimist, and so the moral of the story is that I realize that if I hadn’t had that interview, I would never have read that book- or everything else that Brown wrote after.

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I am still looking for my next favorite book.

I’m hoping that it will be the one I am writing. That would be so cool.

In the meantime, if you are already a fan of Narnia, I can totally recommend these two literary critiques:

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Inside Narnia by Devin Brown  ‘Longtime fans of the Chronicles as well as newcomers to the series will find this book both insightful and informative’ _ Jerry Walls

And also The Magician’s Book by Laura Miller

Lots of love, Sally xxx

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12 thoughts on “World Book Day: What was your favorite childhood read?

  1. Upon reading the question–the book you blogged about was my choice. It’s just one of those magical books that made me hunger to find the next paper treasure! ♡ Two other books stick out, too. I adored ‘Charlotte’s Web’ and ‘Stuart Little’. Most wouldn’t think the latter would be a pick but the details made it an easy and fun one, for a child’s imagination.
    I feel reading to my special needs son as a toddler and as he grew–is what aided him in going beyond expectations AND now, he loves reading!

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  2. Like I said I don’t remember any childhood favorites, and I didn’t know about the Chronicles of Narnia until the movies came out, which I enjoyed but I think I’ve grown out of that kind of genre, so I don’t plan on reading them.
    On the other note, still if you asked me now what my favorite book is, I wouldn’t be that sure what to answer…I am so indecisive!!hahaha I really like The Da Vinci Code, but only the movie!ha I didn’t get up on the wagon of Dan Brown, at least not yet 😛

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  3. The first book I remember choosing to read was also The Lion The Witch and the Wardrobe. I was in first grade and we would earn “book bucks” for doing homework and assignments etc… so I got to spend all my Saved up bucks on a book in the teachers library. I remember that I chose the book because it had the word Witch in the title lol. I read it in two days and then I bought the same book again, thinking I’d have an extra if I ever lost the first one! So silly. It wasn’t until years later that I finally read the series, and when the movie came out, I was thrilled! I was in first grade about 27 years ago! I’ve always had a copy around the house somewhere, and I’ve given several copies away.

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  4. Oooh my favourite childhood books will always be the Harry Potter series. But as a young child I was always obsessed with Jaqueline Wilson books too!

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  5. I Had my parents read the Lorax by Dr. Seuss to me about 500 times when I was little and I still love the book… However my four-year-old is with much less enthusiastic about it

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  6. Alice In Wonderland ❤ though I did love all the Narnia books too, I used to have all of them on cassette tape (god, that was a long time ago!) and I would listen to them when I went to bed. Also Matilda was a favourite, and I had a children's version of Little Women which I loved, and I still love the classic today!

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  7. Yes yes yes!!! The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is the first book I remember our mom reading us as kids. As much as I love all the books in the series, my favorite was definitely The Silver Chair! Oh man, so much beauty in that book… All the books are amazing though. ❤ I remember being so annoyed that Susan wasn't a particularly nice character because I reeeeeally wanted to like Susan. See, I'm the oldest girl in my family and my younger sister always claimed Lucy when we wanted to play Narnia. 😉 So of course she got the best part, lol! Aaaaahhh… childhood memories…

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