Me reading Childcraft, my brother and dad
When I was 4 - 7 years old, we were living in Kaohsiung Taiwan for the first time, which helps in remembering what books I liked then. Besides, most of them were given to me by a missionary family who went back to the States a year and a half after we got there.
These books were my first love. I read them all to my mom as she worked in the kitchen, reading myself hoarse, and she, being a complete newbie to homeschooling, was just so relieved I was reading that she seldom asked me to do kitchen work, which is why to this day I'm a fair cook, but something always gets in the way of cooking.
Here is the approximate order I read them in:
(Where available, hyperlinked titles will take you to the book's page on gutenberg.org where you can read it online for FREE with many options for reading/downloading the book: plain text, html sometimes with the original illustrations, a Plucker version for your cell phone, and sometimes an audio version, etc.)
1. Friendly Village: Round About - 1950s First Grade Reader
2. Friendly Village: If I Were Going - 1950s Third Grade Primer
Stories of Alice and Jerry and an entrancing Norman Rockwell way of life, stuck in my head as pseudo memories. These are the only books on this page I don't remember reading to my mom.
3. The Magic Faraway Tree books
and Adventures of The Wishing Chair - Enid Blyton.
Read them all to my mom.
4. But the Chronicles of Narnia 纳尼亚故事集 eclipsed everything else.
In Prince Caspian, I still remember misreading "applause" as "applesauce" (something like "They gave him a great round of applesauce.") and my mom laughing.
Another set of covers (these I used to own):
Some other favorite covers:
Too bad there isn't a whole set of covers by Christian Birmingham as this so captures the feeling of what I read:
5. The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet - Eleanor Cameron
6. Stowaway to the Mushroom Planet - Eleanor Cameron
Read them both to my Mom.
7. The Forgotten Door - Key Alexander
Read it to my mom.
8. Blondie and Dagwood - Chic Young
I briefly took piano lessons at the home of a nearby friend of the family but I particularly remember devouring her extensive stash of Blondie and Dagwood comics, and I was noticing clothes (when Blondie couldn't decide what to wear). I never read those comics again, so they're an encapsulated bit of nostalgia for me.
I also saw Gone With the Wind and a really psychedelic cartoon of Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh at this house. GWTW and Little Orphan Annie were my favorite movies at this age.
9. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz 綠 野 仙 蹤 (Frank Baum, illus. John R. Neill)
I enthusiastically read The Wizard of Oz to my Dad at the breakfast table and he had to stop me from following him all over the house with it. A year later when we returned to the States I was bitterly disappointed in what my eight-year-old self considered that imposter of a movie starring Judy Garland. It was the black and white version and nothing like I had imagined in my head or the pictures in the books.
9. Old Yeller 老 黃 狗 - Fred Gipson
Read it to my mom and cried.
I don't remember when I first read these next two books but this is the soonest we would have gotten them, and they were favorites growing up:
Make Way For Ducklings 讓路給小鴨子 - Robert McCloskey
Nursery Rhymes by Douglas Gorsline
Deeply nostalgic. Beautiful line drawings.
beloved books (1 - 3 years old)
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