They say you never forget your first love. That adage still holds true when it comes to your favourite books. This week’s Friday Favourites is another Thanksgiving-themed offering. I think I’ll take a stab at the topic for August 30th, Favorite Books I Read in School.
What did you read in school?
I suspect this topic skews more to assigned reading than recreational, but I’m not going to let that hold me back. While I’ve been assigned some good books, I find the syllabus doesn’t tend to change much between school systems. I think I’ll just talk about some of the books I loved growing up.
My Mum got me interested in this series. I was more of a tomboy when I was young, and didn’t really fit the Nancy Drew mystery genre. She’d loved the Trixie Belden books when she was the same age, and managed to find a few copies that were still being published.
Then we’d watch for garage sales. The cover and inside cover art were so much better than contemporary paperbacks. I was always happy to find an original or early reprint.
What amazes me was that the stories still held up. I guess that the 80’s weren’t all that much different from the 50’s. Definitely not the case today with all the technology that’s become a part of our lives. Far cry from the day when all you needed was a couple of friends and a decent bicycle!
I Want To Go Home by Gordon Korman
My 3rd Grade teacher read I Want to Go Home to us. She’d take a half hour out of the day, sit us all down on a comfy area rug, and read to us. At least, that’s the vague memory floating around in my head. For all I know, we sat at our desks. I guess that takes the theme of ‘read in school’ quite literally.
Rudy is good at everything. Baseball? Yes. Soccer? Yes. Name a sport, he’s good at it. He can even play a mean game of chess. The problem is that he doesn’t want to do these things. What he wants is to escape his sleep-away summer camp. The story, told from his bunkmate’s point of view, is a hilarious twist on the prison-escape genre.
The book was such a hit that we bought it at the next Scholastic book fair. And then we wore it out so bought it again when Korman came to visit our school. I think I still have the autographed cover floating around in a box somewhere.
It was a good stepping-stone to his other books. I grew up reading the MacDonald Hall series, and the adventures of Bugs Potter. By the time I was in high school, Korman was writing early YA. Don’t Care High and Son of Interflux are two good examples.
I still have a few boxes of books lingering in the basement. If and when I find these, I may have to dust them off and give them another read.
The Three Investigators
I have no idea whether kids today are still reading books that were popular in their parents’ or grandparents’ youth. I still have very fond memories of the Three Investigators books. They came out between 1964 and 1987, but most of my memories are of early books taken out from the library. Like the Beldens and Korman books, I have a few tucked away that I managed to pick up at library and garage sales. I rarely saw them at the local Coles.
The Three Investigators was firmly targeted to boys. I didn’t particularly care. They were a fun read, and I enjoyed the idea of a former child star operating an amateur detective agency with his friends. The characters were smart enough that I felt the books were written for kids who could think, rather than a specific gender.
Of course, I watched the Hardy Boys on TV, so I was probably just an odd kid.
What books did you read in school? Or, as per the actual theme this week, do you have any books you’re thankful to have read? Please let me know!