Wednesday, April 27, 2016

"The Golden Age of Reading" -- Does It Still Impact You Today?


Having recently come across a few long-time “keeper” books I’d forgotten (one a hardback collection of horse stories given to me by my grandparents when I was eight years old), I started thinking about how books have long been a part of my life and how I’ve always loved reading--and especially reading during those mid-late grade school years which can be, for many children if they are fortunate, what I’ve heard called “The Golden Age of Reading.”
 
When my family would move to a new town, the first settling-in priorities included enrollment in school, finding a church, and getting a library card. Scholastic book order delivery days were eagerly awaited. And often as a family, we took turns reading books aloud to each other--Dickens’ A Christmas Carol being a long-time favorite. Growing up, we often found BOOKS snuggled in the branches of the family Christmas tree!
 When my reading skills developed sufficiently to explore new reading worlds on my own, I devoured poetry, history, world travel and geography, biographies and autobiographies, science (I loved astronomy, geology, archaeology and animals)—and, of course, FICTION. Which got me thinking…who were a few of my favorite fiction authors during those mid-late grade school years--and why?
I was born horse crazy, so a no-brainer in the “why” department included Black Beauty and books in Marguerite Henry’s Misty of Chincoteague series and Walter Farley’s Black Stallion series. These books--their settings, situations, and adventurous, come-alive characters--filled my imagination.
The Laura Ingalls Wilder stories of a pioneer girl captivated me, for I’d grown up on the real-life stories of my own ancestors’ experiences and came from a close-knit extended family, too. Some not-so-well-known books riveted me, as well, such as Zilpha Keatley Snyder’s The Velvet Room, in which I immersed myself as a sixth grader. As a child who at that point had lived in five different small towns in a four-year period, I could identify with the challenges and dreams of the young heroine. And who could forget amateur sleuth Nancy Drew?
 I’m currently writing contemporary inspirational romances set in small-town, mountain country Arizona. They reflect my love of family and close-knit communities, and how important a role God plays in our lives--especially when we cooperate with Him. (And yes, I slip horses in whenever I reasonably can!) Due to long-time interests, however, I also could have easily gravitated to writing inspirational romantic mysteries or westerns. (Who knows, maybe one day I’ll add those to my writing repertoire!)
 What books linger in YOUR memory from your mid-late elementary school years? What about them drew you? Something about a particular character? The setting? A situation that you identified with? The fact that they were in a series where you could revisit them time and time again?
If you’re a WRITER, share with us your elementary school “golden age” reading favorites and how you think they might be impacting what you’re writing TODAY.
Do you see anything in your overall youthful reading interests that might be fun and “fair game” to incorporate into one of your stories now or in the future?
How can you make YOUR book one that will linger in a reader’s mind long after the last page is turned?
And if you’re a READER, what were your “golden age” fiction favorites--and do you still gravitate to those topics / types of books when looking for something to read today?
 
If you’d like to be entered in a drawing for a copy of my May 2016 Love Inspired release, “Claiming the Single Mom’s Heart,” mention it, then check the Weekend Edition to see if you’re a winner!
Glynna
 
GLYNNA KAYE treasures memories of growing up in small Midwestern towns--and vacations spent with the Texan side of the family. She traces her love of storytelling to the times a houseful of great-aunts and great-uncles gathered with her grandma to share candid, heartwarming, poignant and often humorous tales of their youth and young adulthood. Her Love Inspired books--Pine Country Cowboy and High Country Holiday won first and second place, respectively, in the 2015 RWA Faith, Hope & Love Inspirational Reader’s Choice Awards. Claiming the Single Mom’s Heart, her tenth Love Inspired book (and the second in the Hearts of Hunter Ridge series) is available now!
Their Unexpected Love. Sunshine Carston is looking for more than beautiful scenery when she moves with her daughter to Hunter Ridge, Arizona. She’s looking for answers. According to family legend, her ancestors were cheated out of their land by the Hunter family. But when she meets Grady Hunter, Sunshine’s mission is endangered—how can she investigate the Hunters when she’s falling in love with one? When Grady’s mother becomes ill, Grady steps in to help her run against Sunshine for town council. But what will Grady say when he finds out about Sunshine’s investigation? To rise above the past and forge a future together, they’ll need a love stronger

119 comments :

  1. Coffee's cookin'!

    I was a Nancy Drew reader.

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  2. My top favorite book as a kid was Charlotte's Web, hands down. I even watched the animated movie on TV when it came out years later. I also read a lot of Beverly Clearly, The little Golden books (remember those?), Where the Wild Things Are, The Velveteen Rabbit, all of the Lord of the Rings books (my dad had the whole collection), many westerns such as Louis L'amour (my dad again), and a whole lot more I'm sure I can't remember! I had and still have a voracious book appetite & read such a wide variety....nowadays Christian only, of course.

    What a hoot talking about books, my favorite subject :-). I can't wait until tomorrow to read more comments to see what other books trigger the old memory!

    P.S. I already own "Claiming the Single Mom's Heart", so no need to add my name to the hat!

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  3. It was Laura Ingalls Wilder for me! And also Nancy Drew. Some of my favorite summer memories are of getting on the cold, air conditioned Book Mobile and staying a while to read. :)

    Oh, and Glynna, I remember those Scholastic orders, too!! I loved poring over the sheet with all the books listed. And though we were on a generally tight budget, my parents were great about letting us order any books we wanted. :)

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  4. Oh, Trixi, I should have mentioned Beverly Cleary! I loved her Ramona books.

    I also loved Amelia Bedelia books. :)

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  5. Beany Malone series by Lenora Mattingly Weber.

    The Toby Heydon series, by Rosamund du Jordin starting with "Practically Seventeen."


    Tobey Heydon is "practically seventeen" and thinks she is old enough to make her own decisions. Whether it's saving her sister Alicia from last minute wedding disasters to keeping her sister Janet informed on her son's well-being to hiding her diary from her little sister Midge, Tobey handles it all with Brose by her side. They survive the arrival of a beautiful blonde at the lake but will they survive Tobey's mysterious date for the Heart Hop?

    They started my love of romance!!!

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  6. Glynna I was SUCH a reader and my whole family went to the library every week and stocked up on books.
    This was back in the day, one tiny rabbit ear TV with three channels that went off at night.
    EIGHT CHILDREN.
    NO MONEY.
    TINY HOUSE.
    NO AIR CONDITIONING.
    A mother who's solution to about 98% of all discipline problems was to say, "GO OUTSIDE!"
    I'm telling you I was EAGER for entertainment and escape!!!

    I loved The Black Stallion books. Those were the first books I remember reading and being aware of the skill of the author. So aware I made a point of respecting the skill of Walter Farley and thinking, "How did he do that? How did he make me HEAR those pounding horse's hooves? Smell the dust? Fell the heat of those huge galloping horses as if I was the rider."
    I got it that this was an amazing skill.

    Trixie Belden, Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, Little House. I'm only failing to list more here because I can't remember.

    We got readers digest condensed books and I read them all.
    I read Tom Sawyer many times. I still love that book. I always think Tom Sawyer is Harry Potter without magic. Just kids on their own, solving things, getting in and out of scrapes.

    You guys are waaaaaay to young for me. You're listing off books that I read to my children!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  7. Of course we read all the Dr. Seuss books.
    I was so in love with The Secret Garden and The Little Princess. The Secret Garden remains one of my finest reading experiences.
    Reading A Light in the Forest was a trans-formative experience.
    I think I read books that were too old for me a lot because we had that subscription to Readers Digest Condensed books. I remember my mom trying to GET IT TO STOP because we couldn't afford it, but they just KEPT COMING.
    And I loved it. They were clean though, this was the 60s.

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  8. The books I loved in elementary school were the "Adventure Series" by Enid Blyton. My teacher would read from one each afternoon after lunch. I devoured them after that. I was also a big fan of Dr. Seuss, my favorite was, And to Think That I Saw in on Mulberry Street...a book full of imagination.

    May you all have a blessed day!

    Cindy W.

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  9. I re-read the Enid Blyton books so many times. I wanted to be going on adventures. Yes, I do still enjoy adventure in the books I read.

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  10. I still have all of my Nancy Drew books even though I had sons. I've never been able to part with them. I also have a The Best Loved Doll and Harry the Dirty Dog. I read so many good books growing up, and many of the characters were like friends.

    Thanks for sharing this fun post, Glynna.

    Don't add my name to the drawing because I have your book and plan to read it this weekend. Have a great day!

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  11. Hands down, Laura Ingalls Wilder. I remember wanting to live out on the prairie and ride in the stagecoach. Another favorite of mine was Stuart Little. That was the first book I ever purchased with my own money.
    I'd love to be entered in the drawing, Glynna!

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  12. Good morning, HELEN--another Nancy Drew fan! Thank you for putting the coffee on! I'm not a coffee drinker, but here at 4:30 a.m. on a cold, dark morning it sounds mighty tempting!! :)

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  13. Hi, TRIXI! Oh, yes! Charlotte's Web! I remember the Beverly Cleary books, too-- the Ramona & Beezus stories! And yes, the Little Golden Books early on. I didn't read Tolkien or L'Amour until out of my elementary school years. I wish the kids books didn't cost so much on Kindle now as I'd love to get them and read them again!

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  14. Louisa Mae Alcott and Laura Ingalls Wilder are the authors I discovered at that age. I read a few Nancy Drew books too.

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  15. MISSY - Summertime reading was the BEST, wasn't it? Going to the library each week to load up with books. Sitting out in a lawn chair in the shade or on the porch with a glass of lemonade--or inside in front of a fan on a hot afternoon.

    I forgot the Amelia Bedelia books!

    Scholastic deliveries were like awaiting Christmas! You felt so RICH when you carried your new treasures home.

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  16. Gee, TINA, now I feel BAD. I've never read ANY of those Beany Malone or Tobey Heyden books that I recall. How did I miss those? Maybe selection was limited at the rural schools and small-town public libraries or something.

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  17. I loved Cherry Ames nursing books, Judy Bolton mysteries, Laura Ingalls Wilder, scholastic books to name a few. When I was younger I loved Little Black Sambo and Mike Mulligan and his steamshovel as well as Beatrix Potter.

    I still have one of the scholastic books that is at least 50 years old and I have read it and read it.

    My parents took us to the library frequently. I remember my mother fussing at me while on vacation to put my book down because I was missing such beauty in the Rocky Mountains. I would read the day away while riding in the car.

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  18. MARY - My Texas grandparents got those Reader's Digest condensed books, too, and I remember reading those. And yes, I read Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn, too. That's a great way to describe them as Harry Potter without the magic!

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  19. Good morning Glynna What a fun post going down memory lane. We moved often also when I was growing up so I know the importance of that library card. smile

    I also loved the horse stories. Black Beauty was one of my favorites. I loved The Black Stallion series. Anything to do with horses. But I have to say I never read the books for young readers. I skipped by Nancy Drew, Laura Ingalls, Beverly Cleary. I read those when I became a teacher. LOL

    As a child, I skipped right into my mother's books. I was reading books like Gone With The Wind, all of the Louis L'Amour westerns, Irving Stone, etc. Mother loved historical novels, romance novels and a lot of non-fiction. I just read all of her books. I think that is why I love romance novels.

    BTW I love the photo of you. Makes me miss you. smile

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  20. Good Morning, CINDY W! I haven't ready anything by Enid Blyton. Will have to look her up and see if her books are available on Amazon. I remember my teachers setting aside "read aloud" time during class, too. I loved that!

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  21. Books that linger in my mind include Gypsy and Nimblefoot, about two horses. I tried finding other books by this author, but was never able to. I should try now. I also discovered R L Stine when my kids were younger. Who knew about Goosebumps? He must have come along after my time as a kid lol. I devoured his books and then wrote short stories with my daughter as the main character like a Nancy Drew mystery with a Goosebumps twist. And I loved Louis L'Amour westerns. That's how my husband and I knew we were meant for each other. The first evening he came over, he commented on my collection and told me he had all his books. All his books. I was still working on my collection lol.

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  22. MARY P - ANOTHER Enid Blyton fan! I'm starting to feel as if I'd been deprived in my Golden Age reading years.

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  23. JACKIE -- you STILL have all of your Nancy Drews? WOW! I've long passed mine along to the children of friends and family members, along with my complete collections of the Little House and Black Stallion and Misty-related books. Sometimes I can't help but wish I'd kept them ALL!

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  24. Good morning, Glynna!

    My mother bought me a collection of classic books from a door-to-door salesman that included Tale of Two Cities, Wizard of Oz, Alice and Wonderland, and many others. I read each one several times. I have no doubt that those years I spent holes up in my room reading were the reason I'm writing today.

    I also had an influential teacher who read aloud to us. Books like Where the Red Fern Grows and Old Yeller.

    It made such a huge impact on me that I read aloud to our children books like Little Britches and Nancy Drew. We always had audio books on long drives too. Great memories.

    Thanks for your post today.

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  25. Good morning, Glynna!

    My mother bought me a collection of classic books from a door-to-door salesman that included Tale of Two Cities, Wizard of Oz, Alice and Wonderland, and many others. I read each one several times. I have no doubt that those years I spent holes up in my room reading were the reason I'm writing today.

    I also had an influential teacher who read aloud to us. Books like Where the Red Fern Grows and Old Yeller.

    It made such a huge impact on me that I read aloud to our children books like Little Britches and Nancy Drew. We always had audio books on long drives too. Great memories.

    Thanks for your post today.

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  26. Hello, JILL--another Little House fan! And oh, yes! Stuart Little! Wasn't that the most fun book? A few years ago my church was collecting books for literacy efforts here in town and my family and I were able to get some of our childhood favorites (including Stuart!) in paperback to donate. I couldn't help but take a walk down memory lane peek into many of them!

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  27. Hello, WILANI! I remember one of my libraries had a few Cherry Ames books. That's funny that your mom got on your case because you were so engrossed in your book that you were missing out on the Rocky Mountains. Now kids are missing out due to playing electronic games and texting.

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  28. Hi Glynna,
    I loved the Scholastic book fairs at school. I still have the first book I bought, The Story of Helen Keller. Even as a kid the emotional power of the dedication page hooked me, "In grateful memory of Teacher...Who led a little girl out of the dark and gave the world...Helen Keller".

    Mary's and my story are similar, although we only had five kids, we stayed outside a lot, built forts and read. My mom didn't drive so whatever books we had to read came from the school library. I always stocked up and made sure I had plenty of adventures to last through the weekends. I can't remember all the titles like everyone seems to be able to, but there have been several thousand along the way I'm sure.

    I'd love to be in the drawing for "Claiming the Single Mom's Heart". I need to get caught up on what's happening in Hunter Ridge :)

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  29. Good morning, SANDRA! I didn't read Gone With the Wind until I was in junior high. It was at that time, too, that I really got into the classics like Austen and the Brontes--and Shakespeare! :)

    What's interesting is how timeless many of the children's books we read "back in the day" are--kids are still enjoying them. AND they're still entertaining to adults!

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  30. Glynna That is so true. And I'm delighted that those children's books are timeless. The market for children's books is tough. Its hard to find books that are appropriate for school. Most school boards frown on books with violence and sex in them so the classics are a wonderful choice and about the only choice. LOL

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  31. Hi, SALLY! I seem to recall a horse book by the name of "Gypsy," too. There was another horse book I read over and over, as well -- "The Dollar Horse" ? Don't remember who wrote it. Will need to check Amazon to see if it's still around.

    I love the idea of your short stories written with your daughter being Nancy Drew meets Goose Bumps!

    How sweet! Who'd have thought Louis L'Amour would be a matchmaker! :)

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  32. BTW the first author I met and knew was Sharon Wagner. She wrote many, many Nancy Drew books. She also wrote romance novels for Silloutte and Harlequin. She was my first mentor and one of the founders of the Desert Rose Chapter of RWA. She has passed away, but she was a wonderful role model.

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  33. Hello, RENEE! I bet you felt like you were wealthy beyond measure when your mom bought that collection of classic books! I remember the Wizard of Oz was one of my Scholastic book picks.

    By reading aloud to your own kids, I'm sure you've instilled a love of story in them, too! Reading opens up so many worlds that those who can't--or won't--read lose out on.

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  34. Fun post, Glynna. I LOVED and devoured Nancy Drew books. Many an allowance was saved up and spent at the local book store. A friend introduced me to Trixie Belden. I loved the fact that she was a twin; I'd always wanted to be one. One of the things that I loved about Nancy Drew books is that she had to great friends. As a girl who didn't have many of those in elementary school, I yearned for a George and a Bess in my own life. My heroines have good friends. :)

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  35. TRACEY -- That's so cool that you still have the first book you bought! I remember reading that Helen Keller book, too. So inspiring.

    I lived outside, too. We didn't watch much TV at all. So when I wasn't out on my bike or wading in a ditch catching crawdads or climbing a tree or roller skating or riding a friend's pony, I loved to read.

    Like you, I'm only remembering a tiny fraction of the books I read growing up--there were SO MANY!

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  36. SANDRA -- That's so neat that one of your early mentors was one of the Nancy Drew authors! And that she was one of the founders of the Desert Rose RWA!

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  37. Love the trip to the "Golden Age" of reading Glynna!

    Laura Ingalls, Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, Tom Sawyer, Huck Finn, Amelia Bedelia, Madeline... Chronicles of Narnia was big in our family. Lord of the Rings and Hobbit came a bit later along with the Dragonriders of Pern. I went a bit fantasy as YA. Actually still love YA books. I've got more than a few on my shelf waiting for Guppy to get old enough to appreciate them.

    Of course, the Dr. Suess books are awesome. Guppy is already reading some of them all by himself now. What is really cool, is I can hand him the book and tell him that it is the same book I read when I was his age. He loves that. He likes the idea that the old book (held together with tape) he is reading is the very same one mommy had when she was little like him.

    I think my favorite was Harold and the Purple Crayon. A little boy creating his own worlds with a crayon. Small wonder I'm an artist now. Again, it's fun to see that my own little guy loves that story too. Unfortunately, my mom gave away my old copy of Harold, so this Purple Crayon book is newer.

    Mom didn't have much money, raising three kids on her own, so the library was a big deal. Some of my favorite memories are our weekly trips to the library for reading time and checking out a BIG stack of books to read. Libraries ROCK!!!!!

    I know I forgot a bunch, but I think I drift more to romantic suspense because of my love for Nancy Drew and Hardy Boy books. Oh, I loved the Encyclopedia Brown books too. Which ties to my enjoyment of cozy mysteries or regular mysteries.

    No need for my name in the draw Glynna. I already won your book and read it. Just itching for Amazon to allow reviews to post an I LOVE IT!!!!! review. I haven't figured out Goodreads enough to post there.

    This is such a cool post! Thanks for writing it Glynna.

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  38. JEANNE T - For some reason, I don't think I read many Trixie Belden books--again, probably because of the limitations of small-town libraries (one town I lived in had a population of about 300-400, I think, so Scholastic book deliveries were ESPECIALLY welcome!)

    Nancy DID have great "chums," didn't she? That's neat that your own books now incorporate best friends forever for your heroines!

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  39. QUESTION: Do those of you with elementary-age kids still make regular excursions to the library with them? ARe libraries still as big of a deal now as when we grew up? Or is Amazon your go-to book source for your children's reading matter? Do your "Golden Age" kids (beyond the picture-book age) read paper books or Kindle?

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  40. DebH -- That's neat that you still have some of your favorites set aside for when your Guppy is ready for them. And sweet that he's reading your well-worn Seuss books.

    I remember my first reading experience with Dr. Seuss was in a small-town Missouri library--it was on a shady street maybe a block or two from my house--an old white Victorian-styled home with a wrap-around front porch. A magical place to go!

    I remember Encyclopedia Brown, too!

    What an impact the Purple Crayon book had on your artistic leanings!

    So glad you enjoyed Claiming the Single Mom's Heart, Deb! And Amazon reviews are always welcome, so thank you!

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  41. Glynna,
    Re: your question about kids/library trips. Two of my grandkids (8 and 10)are homeschooled and the public library is a weekly event they love. They can pick what they want, one leads toward science and medical stuff, the other American Girl adventures.
    They both have kindles, but use them mainly for playing games.

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  42. TRACEY -- that's great that your grandkids are getting the library experience now. I didn't even know my Kindle COULD play games. LOL

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  43. What a fun trip down Memory Lane, Glynna! Books that immediately come to mind for me are Little Women and Secret of the Samurai Sword. I can still remember walking through the public library I used to visit, and I can still picture myself slipping an intriguing title from the shelf and turning the pages.

    I'm so happy that my daughter has raised her children to be avid readers. They'll bring home 20 or more library books at a time, and usually the kids have read through them all within a couple of days!

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  44. Good morning, MYRA! Yes! How could I have forgotten Little Women?

    That's great that your grandkids haunt the library and are avid readers!

    I have such wonderful memories of libraries in the various communities we lived it.

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  45. Oh, just reading this post makes me go down memory lane. Such sweet memories. I was the kid who read inside, outside, in bed with a flashlight and just about everywhere else. I loved Nancy Drew, the whole Little House series, Little Women, The Secret Garden and so many more. I also loved the Ramona books and my daughter picked them up too. Incidentally, Beverly Cleary, author of Ramona and the Ralph S. Mouse series, was a librarian before becoming an author. Her name was Beverly Bunn and, I LOVE this, she was the children's librarian where Debbie Macomber would go as a child for story hour. Because I am such a Debbie Macomber fan I love thinking about the fact that her librarian as a child became author Beverly Cleary.
    Thanks for this sweet post. Perfect for a crazy busy Wednesday.

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  46. I also just remembered that in my late teens/early twenties I became a Phyllis A. Whitney fan and to this day I have many of her hardcover romantic suspense books on my shelf. I even have a copy of her 'manual' on writing fiction. sigh. I think I'll dig one of her books up and read it again for old times sake.

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  47. Hello, CHRISTINA! That's amazing about Beverly Cleary and the Debbie Macomber connection. Thanks for sharing!

    I remember my mom taking me to "story hour" at a little-town library in rural Iowa--just a few blocks from my grandparents' house. It was fun to check out those same books and then my Mom would read them to me again at home--or I could read them myself as my reading skills developed.

    Does anyone else remember the distinctive smell of that protective plastic they sometimes put on kids' books so they'd last longer?

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  48. CHRISTINA -- I became a fan of Phyllis Whitney, too--and I used to have that same writing craft book you have. Maybe STILL do. And I loved Victoria Holt, Mary Stewart and Barbara Michaels/Elizabeth Peters. Those mysteries definitely influenced the direction of my writing for many years until I took an interest in small-town romance writing.

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  49. Well, I have to step out for a bit, but I shall return! Enjoy chatting about your "Golden Age" book favorites and how they may impact what you write today.

    Any ideas on what appealed to you back then that you can put in your books NOW so that they'll linger in your readers' hearts?

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  50. My dad was in the Forest Service, so I spent much of my childhood living at remote ranger stations. However, during my fourth grade year we lived in town. My mom took my sisters and me to the local library regularly. Those trips were the high point of my week. I checked out the maximum number of books, took them home, curled up on my bottom bunk bed and was transported to wonderful places.

    During that memorable year I devoured the Little House books and fell in love with history. I sped through the Nancy Drew series, and when I ran out of those, I moved on to the Hardy Boys. I read about the Bobbsey Twins, Beezus and Ramona, and many more. Harriet the Spy was a favorite. She loved to watch people and write, two things I enjoy.

    I was a few years older when I discovered Little Women. It's my all-time favorite book. I still have the tear-stained hardback copy that I spent $10 of hard-earned allowance money on.

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  51. Claiming the Single Mom's Heart came home from Walmart with me on Monday! It's on my TBR pile!

    Loved this post. Reading was my life from 4th grade through middle school. Into high school as well, although I branched out and was heavily involved in extracurricular activities and had less time. But those younger years, I haunted the libraries. Prided myself on going down rows of shelves and finding so many stories I had read and loved.

    Nancy Drew was an early favorite. I read all of that series published at that time. Charlotte's Web had me in tears, for days! All the classics...oh, Little Women was a treasured favorite!

    Willa Cather, Daphne du Maurier, Edna Ferber...I read everything she wrote!

    Don't have time to list all my favorites. Meeting Patti Jo for lunch! How fun is that!!!

    More later!

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  52. CHRISTINA, I was a huge Phyllis Whitney fan, too, back in the day! Several years ago when browsing a used bookstore, I found tons of them that I hadn't gotten around to and brought them all home. Such a treat!

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  53. GLYNNA, thanks for this fun post. Like Tracey, my memory of titles isn't good. A small library truck came to my Junior High. Not called Middle School then. The back opened and we could select books but there weren't a lot to choose from.

    I loved Black Beauty and Little Women. My parents got Readers Digest Books and I read those. We lived in the country and my mom didn't drive so I didn't get to the library much as a kid. I made sure our kids got to story hour, signed up for summer reading programs and checked out books. Many of the books mentioned here, I read to them. I still have a dogeared copy of Harry the Dirty Dog, the favorite Dr. Seuss books, Black Beauty and Charlotte's Web.

    When I taught first grade, I read Charlotte's Web to my classes. I loved Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, but our girls did enjoy them. They did love the Beverly Cleary books.

    Janet

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  54. Oh, fun post, Glynna -- a walk down biblio-memory lane!!

    I absolutely ADORED the bookmobile, and always checked out the maximum # of books along with girlfriend -- ten!! I always got a kick out of how she went for all the suspense and scientific books along with Nancy Drews, while I always went for the romance. Big surprise, eh???

    It's no secret my favorite book in my childhood was Gone With the Wind, but it also might surprise some that my 2nd favorite was To Kill a Mockingbird, which had no romance at all as I recall. But some of my teen faves were Emile Loring and Victoria Holt.

    I am forever grateful that someone -- not sure who -- introduced me to reading!!

    Hugs,
    Julie

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  55. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  56. Glynna,

    I apologize for deleting my post. Between auto correct (It wanted you to be Glenn not Glynna) and my own error. . .

    I lived a block from my local library and systematically went through every horse book, then every dog book (Albert Payson Terhune), every whaling book (I grew up on Long Island) and then all the gothic romances but my most favorite childhood books belonged to my mother as a girl. I read every volume of Elsie Dinsmore cover to cover multiple times.They were written by Martha Finley beginning about 1867, I believe. There were at least twelve volumes. I had my mother's original volumes which would be more than 125 years old now. The last time I read them the pages were brown and crumbling. I no longer have them, something which makes me very sad.

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  57. Keli I didn't know your dad was a forest ranger. How fun. My hubby was going to be a forest ranger. That would be a perfect life for me since I love the outdoors. But when he found out most of the jobs were indoors he opted into teaching instead.

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  58. Debby You are so fortunate to be having lunch with Patti Jo. I am so envious. sigh

    ANd Daphne DuMaurier was one of my favorite authors also. I still have an old copy of Rebecca that was my mothers. But my favorite book of hers was Frenchman's Creek.

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  59. Ooooh Christina I really loved Phyllis Whitney also. I have some of her books too. I'm so glad everyone is mentioning these names because when I first commented, I couldn't think of them. But here they are and no wonder they are other people's favorites. They are excellent authors.

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  60. Oh yes, Little Women was another favorite. Thanks for reminding me, Janet. Julie no surprise that Gone With The Wind was one of yours as well. smile

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  61. I have the copy of Black Beauty I read at my Granny's one summer! I also can't part with my set of Trixie Beldon mysteries (My favorite was Bob White Cave)! I remember how strong-willed she was and even when adventures didn't go smoothly, which was often, she was usually right.

    I identified with her on many levels and loved it when my Granny B took me to the 5 and Dime and let me choose any book I wanted!

    Great memories!

    Stephanie

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  62. Just remembered another favorite--The Yearling. Oh, how I cried over that one!!!

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  63. GLYNNA, thank you for a great post! It has awakened all kinds of memories. My mom didn't drive so I went to the Bookmobile once a week. A trip to the "Big Library" downtown was an event. And I ordered the Scholastic books. My favorite order was the June one, which usually came in on the last day of school. I'd go home, change out of school clothes, and sit under a tree with my books. That was the beginning of summer for me!
    TINA, I read all the Beany Malone books and was so glad she finally married Carleton Buell but was disappointed Andy became a priest. I LOVED their housekeeper, "Mrs. No-Complaint." She was a rye-ott! I also read all the Tobey Heydon books. This is like a Trip Down Memory Lane. Midge got her own book at the end.
    Another author, Anne Emery, also did a series about the Burnaby family, Sally and Jean. Anybody read those?
    I don't even know where you can find this stuff any more, most of the libraries have culled their shelves.
    Both I and my children read Beverly Cleary, which says something: her interpretation of childhood through Ramona is timeless. Ramona IS the ultimate kid and every kid can relate to her. My kids wrote her a fan letter and I've got her answer. Somewhere.
    My all-time favorite series, and the one I give to young girls when I can find them (the books, not the girls) is Maud Hart Lovelace's Betsy, Tacy and Tib collection. There is SO MUCH to love here...the fact that Betsy was a writer, which made me think I could be too; the portrayal of childhood, everything from cutting their hair to using a mirror to "walk" on the ceiling to the "Everything Pudding" fiasco; and their sibling rivalry with the bossy Julia and Katie. I loved the idea of Betsy sitting up in a tree, scribbling stories on a pad and hiding them in a cigar box. And really, who didn't harbor a secret crush on Joe Willard?
    I also loved the way the series grew in complexity, from an early reader ("Betsy-Tacy") to middle-grade adventures to high school, a European trip ("Betsy and the Great World"), marriage ("Betsy's Wedding") and hard choices. At the end of "Betsy's Wedding" Betsy wants a child, but doesn't have one yet, and Joe is about to march off to World War I. It's not a perfect world but she makes it work.
    The books also give a detailed picture of America in the early 20th century; who can forget Tib's epic ride in the horseless carriage?
    Oh, I also loved "The Wizard of Oz," "Alice in Wonderland," and Andrew Lang's fairy tales.
    Also loved the Whitman books, which were inexpensive hardcovers I could pick up at the Five and Dime. This was how I met Trixie Belden.
    I didn't read "Gone With the Wind" until I was in high school, which is probably just as well. I have seen the movie in theaters 7 1/2 times (sneaked in once at intermission) and countless times on TV, VHS and DVD. I am a Wind-iac (or maybe a Gone-er).
    Fun fact: Vivien Leigh was the only one who really wanted to do this film. Gable thought his acting wasn't up to it, Leslie Howard thought he was too old for Ashley, and it was just a job for Olivia DeHavilland. And look what they left us.
    Fun fact 2: During the nationwide search for a Scarlett, one woman sealed herself in a packing crate and had herself mailed to David O. Selznick's house on Christmas Day. She popped out of the crate announcing, "I am your Scarlett O'Hara!" I imagine he called the cops pretty quickly.
    I better go, I am beginning to rant which means I am tired.
    KB

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  64. Good morning Seekerville (9:50 here on the Oregon coast)!! I'm loving reading through all the comments and what everyone enjoyed growing up and/or reading to kids/grandkids!

    Ah yes, MARY C. mentioned the Reader's Digest Condensed books! My mom had a subscription to that magazine from the time I can remember, now I'm continuing that by my own subscription. I do fondly remember reading the condensed books once she got done with them. They were wholesome and fun! One rule with the little magazines......NOBODY read them BEFORE my mom did....that was almost sacrilegious!! Such fun memories & even though the content has changed over the years, I still very much enjoy the magazine. I sure wished they hadn't cut down the Humor in Uniform articles though! Those never failed to bring laughter (my dad was a Navy man).

    I too, was able to buy books from the scholastic book order. We weren't rich & my parents set a dollar limit to my spending, but even then, I was able to buy quite a few at a time. I'd always mark off the books I really wanted, sometimes my parents would splurge and buy me one or two more than usual! I loved bringing those books home when they came :-) When my kids were in elementary school, we'd do the same for them as well. Funny thing, even though we raised them by reading books to them (some of the same I grew up with), only my son took an avid interest in them. I think once my daughter started into the higher grades (Jr. High), she lost interest in reading. We had to practically drag her to the library to get a book for the required class reading or research material. That was like pulling teeth....OYYY!! My son read Hardy boys, some Nancy Drew and a lot of the scholastic ones. Since he's now 19 (where did the time go?), I can pass on a lot of my Christian fiction ones (non-romance). He also has a Kindle with his own account and for birthdays or Christmas we buy him an Amazon gift card to spend on whatever books he wants. We've also bought books for our 2yr old grand-girl, perusing yard sales, used book stores, second hand stores & etc. I have a shelf set aside just for her & she loves to go over and choose a book to bring to us to read. I have quite a few Sesame Street ones, Pooh Bear and a couple of children's illustrated Bible stories. The library is located right in front of our house (very convenient!), and so I've begun to also check out kids DVD movies. I need to find out when they have story time, I'm sure she'd like that.

    I love the old classic stories as well, Huckleberry Fin, Treasure Island, Little House on the Prairie, all the fairy tale books, etc. I especially liked Gulliver's travels. Books have taken me many places I could never afford to go, or travel to a different time or made-up place. I think that's what appeals to me most, is all the adventures I get to go on without leaving my house! Oh and not to mention all the book friends I've made :-) Like my own little clan or something! My favorite part is the characters, when an author can make them seem like my own set of friends then I've connected with the story. You'll have me hooked for life...HA!!

    Fun conversation, I'll be periodically checking back today to see what other books people have mentioned reading :-) I can always use a few new books (or old too!) to add to my ever-growing TBR pile.

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  65. Thanks for this latest Seekerville post some of my favorite books as a kid were Little House books(as some of the others have mentioned),All Of A Kind Family series,Encyclopedia Brown books,and lesser known Nancy Drew type books that my mom gave me like Kay Tracey,Polly French,and Ginny Gordon mysteries. I always loved getting off to a quiet place to read and believe me with two older brothers that wasn't always easy! Still love finding that quiet place and reading today!

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  66. DEBBY, I got GLYNNA'S book at Walmart and I'm really enjoying the conflict between the hero and heroine. Love the name Sunshine!

    Have a fun lunch with a PATTI JO!

    Janet

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  67. Oh I love this so much!! I have two very small children and I'm thrilled to introduce stories to them as they grow toward that golden age. It is so true that the stories we read during that time of life shape us like no other reading in our lifetime does.

    For me, Narnia and Middle Earth immediately come to mind. Everything by Ursula K. LeGuin and I read any Madeline L'Engle I could get my hands on. The Neverending Story by Michael Ende, The Once and Future King by TH White, Sherlock Holmes and Nancy Drew and Encyclopedia Brown, and Jules Verne! And of course, Beverly Cleary. I loved figuring out the puzzles, the languages, the characters that I could relate to - even though some of them were kings and hobbits and wizards.

    As you can tell from my list, I was drawn by fantasy and adventure and mystery, which is what I write about now in spec fic. I am particularly passionate about writing realistic and relatable characters even if the world or circumstances are speculative. The hobbits stick with us so well because we can really empathize with what they go through.

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  68. Hi, KELI! It's lunchtime out here on Pacific & Arizona time, so I imagine that's what you're enjoying right about now, too.

    How fun that you grew up at remote ranger stations. But I can see why you gravitated to a library when the opportunity presented itself! I remember Harriet the Spy, too. I don't remember reading any Bobbsey Twins, though I've always heard of them.

    I imagine you've read some of the biographies of Louis May Alcott (I read one last year). Very unusual upbringing!

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  69. Good afternoon, DEBBY! Glad "Claiming the Single Mom's Heart" is out there now (I went looking for it on Friday at it wasn't in town here yet). Thank you for buying it!

    Oh, yes, Daphne du Maurier and her Rebecca and Edna Ferber! I loved Giant, Dinner at Antoine's and some of hers set along the Mississippi.

    Hope you had a great lunch with Patti Jo!

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  70. You're still able to find Phyllis Whitney in the used bookstore, MYRA? WOW!

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  71. Hi, JANET! So neat that you still have copies of some of your favorites! Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer were fun, but may be an "acquired taste" for some--or not. When I was in college I remember going with my sister and several college pals to Hannibal, Missouri, smack dab along the river in Huck/Tom country. I've always LOVED the big rivers--Mississippi, Missouri and Ohio. Quite happy to sit all day and watch them and the river traffic roll by.

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  72. Hello, JULIE! Why is it I'm not the least bit surprised that Gone With the Wind is your favorite? :) I didn't read that until I was in junior high, though, so you were way ahead of me. Maybe read it as a high school freshman?

    You're so right--being introduced to reading at a young age was such a gift!

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  73. Hi, BARBARA! Don't you just love auto-correct? :)

    Having a library within such close walking distance was so enjoyable for me in several towns we lived in, too. Whaling books--fiction? Non-fiction?

    How special that your favorite books belonged to your mother, but it is sad when books we love do finally fall apart. Wonderful, though, that you got to read them, too.

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  74. Good afternoon, STEPHANIE! Black Beauty seems to be popular one today, doesn't it? And because you read it at your grandmother's it holds those special memories, too, when you think of it. I know I can remember exactly where I was when I read "The Velvet Room." On a winter trip from Illinois to Iowa, trying to get as far as I could before I lost enough light to read when the sun set.

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  75. You know, MYRA, I don't think I've read The Yearling. I'll have to do that sometime.

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  76. Hi, KAYBEE! How did I miss the Beany Malone books? and Tobey Heydon?

    So neat that you wrote Beverly Cleary a letter AND got a response!

    No wonder you loved the Betsy, Tacy & Tib books if Betsy is a writer! (Somehow I missed those books, too?) That's probably why I loved L.M. Montgomery's "Emily of New Moon" series more than the "Anne of Green Gables." I could so identify with her loving writing.

    So funny about the woman mailing herself, desperate to play Scarlett!!

    Thanks for sharing the author & book names. I'm going to have to make a note of a bunch of them from today's post and see if there's anyplace I could get some of them.

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  77. Hello, TRIXI! I didn't know Reader's Digest still did the condensed books.

    Talk about a library being close! You'd definitely win that contest!

    That's great that your son still loves to read -- maybe it will be reawakened in your daughter at some time.

    I remember Treasure Island, too! A LOT of classics like that are available on Kindle for FREE. Periodically, I go out and see if there are any new ones available that I might like to get -- either to read for the first time or re-read! It seems that if we find a personal "connection" with a hero or heroine, that makes a book seem extra special.

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  78. Hello LYNNE! Yes, finding that "quiet place" to read can sometimes be a challenge--not necessarily because of the audible noise level, but just the distractions of our daily life. The demands, the responsibilities, the mind chatter. Wouldn't it be wonderful to have a 3-month stretch of summer right now just to go outside and play and READ? :)

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  79. Hey, JANET! Thanks for buying my book! Hope you enjoy it! I need to go check tomorrow to see if Walmart has them yet so I can sticker them with "local author." When I went last week (they released the 19th), they didn't have them yet.

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  80. Hello, MEGAN! C.S. Lewis and Madeleine L'Engle. Two more of my favorites! I've never read "The Neverending Story," but I LOVED a movie by the same name and suppose the movie was based on that book?

    So neat that you're being able to guide your kids into the wonderful world of reading! It truly is an amazing gift--how God's designed our imaginations to follow along with the written word.

    I think you're "spot on" about how important characters we can empathize with are when it comes to enjoying a book. Which may be why some readers don't "get" what other readers do--we all bring ourselves to each and every book we read and sometimes we identify with the situation and protagonists and other times we don't.

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  81. Well, I have to step out again for a bit! This is a time when I wish I could skip the day job and stay here and "talk books" ALL day!! :)

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  82. I love that connection between Beverly Cleary and Debbie Macomber, Glynna.

    I remember going to story hour years ago when my family lived in the city. The library in Queens, NY was huge! I would have stayed for hours if my mom would have let me lol.

    And now that you brought it up, yes, I remember that smell of the plastic they wrapped those books in to protect them. Most of all, I loved the smell of old books just as you cracked them open.

    Am I the only one who sniffs the library books when I first open them? :)

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  83. Glynna,

    Nice to hear you're a fan of Phyllis Whitney too. I can't believe someone else has that craft book of hers besides me lol

    And oh those names....Victoria Holt, Mary Stewart and Barbara Michaels....I still have some of their books on my keeper shelf as well. When I go to the library I always remember to search the sale books just in case I might find one of these wonderful writers tucked in there. Such great storytellers. I'm pretty sure Phyllis Whitney is the author who made me want to be a writer.

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  84. Thank you, GLYNNA. This was a great post and a great look back.
    KB

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  85. MYRA, another fan of Phyllis Whitney! She was not only a great storyteller, but she led such an interesting life, which she shares a little about in her craft book on fiction writing.

    Oh how I wish we had a used bookstore somewhere near me! I imagine I'd come home loaded with bags of books. What a treasure hunt that would be!

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  86. Woo hoo! Another Phyllis Whitney fan, SANDRA!

    Just goes to show you how the good ones are not easily forgotten. What a legacy to leave as a writer!

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  87. No, GLYNNA, it was maybe 12 or 15 years ago when I found all those Phyllis Whitney books. Sorry!

    And if you haven't read The Yearling, you really should! It's such a poignant story of a boy coming of age. I loved the movie version, too.

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  88. I had such a delightful lunch with Patti Jo! We were praising Seekerville, of course!

    I'm walking down memory lane with all the book titles and authors. No one has mentioned A Tale of Two Cities! Loved that story. Phyllis Whitney! YES!!!

    My father wanted me to read some of the books from his day. Two that I still remember are Cheaper by the Dozen. The dad was an efficiency expert with 12 kids so he timed them doing everything. Cute. Also, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.

    Oh, and Anne Frank!

    Then I got into Leon Uris with Exodus and Catch 22. He had more best sellers, but I can't recall the titles. The Wall by John Hersey.

    Under the Lilac Trees, another of Louisa May Alcott's stories. And all the Little House series!!! Loved them.

    Naturally, Gone With the Wind was a favorite! Loved the movie too!

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  89. I remember checking out the maximum amount of books allowed every time I went to the library -- among them was the Flicka series. Just a few years later, I 'discovered' Agatha Christie and Mary Stewart. I remember the first time I read To Kill a Mockingbird and wishing I could write like that :-)

    Looking forward to reading comments and finding out what books others remember ...

    Interesting post, Glynna. Thanks!

    Nancy C

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  90. Hi Glynna! I loved my Little House books. I was also an avid reader of Beverly Cleary, Judy Bloom and Walter Farley. I don't think many of those books survived my childhood because they were so worn out. And I counted down the days until the Scholastic book order came in. I grew up in a small town and there were no bookstores anywhere close and the only library was a small library that served grades K - 12. I'm pretty sure I read every book in there by the time I was 15.

    One of my favorite things about your books is that they show off a different side of Arizona. People outside our beautiful state often think we're nothing but sand, cactus and rattlesnakes and know nothing about the beautiful mountains and even the diversity of the high deserts. (I love Arizona, can you tell?) I know when I moved here 23 years ago I was shocked at how much Arizona had to offer.

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  91. Oh, what sweet memories your post has brought back for me! :) Now I'm yearning to put everything else "on hold" and pull out some of my classic favorites from many years ago. All of the Laura Ingalls Wilder books, Little Women, Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, Anne of Green Gables, the Cherry Ames series, and sooo many more - - all keepers for me that I'd love to re-read right now. ;) Guess I'll *try* to be disciplined though and finish my current projects, LOL.
    Thanks for sharing, Glynna, and since I recently won your book no need to put me in the drawing!
    Hugs, Patti Jo

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  92. P.S. Meant to add that I was VERY BLESSED today to enjoy lunch and a delightful visit with DEBBY GIUSTI! (Love that precious lady!)
    If only ALL of the Seekers lived in Georgia - - what fun! :)

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  93. Glynna, Thank you for your post. Such great memories. I'm very fortunate in that even when we moved around, my parents kept my first collection of Dr. Seuss, Berenstain Bears, and Disney books they purchased for me. Growing up, Trixie Belden was the series I always purchased whenever I received money for report cards, birthdays, or chores. When I went to the library, I loved checking out Encyclopedia Brown or The Borrowers. At one of my middle school libraries, I discovered Anne of Green Gables and the library only had the first one and the fifth one so for the longest time, those were the only ones I read. In 9th grade, I found Agatha Christie and read most of those. Used bookstores were such a treat when I was growing up as I was a voracious reader. I always loved finding Cherry Ames' books because I loved the series but they were so hard to find by the time I was old enough to read.

    Today, I always take my kids to the library. My oldest has read the entire young adult section at our local branch (I bought her the Little House set from Scholastic. My middle child loved to check out the books on medical ailments (& his younger sister's stuffed animals never had colds or flus, they always had smallpox and whatever book he just checked out). My two youngest still love picture books, and I love so many great picture book authors. So we absolutely still go to the library.

    Loved this trip down memory lane. With my two youngest in kindergarten, I have volunteered to read to the class and the teacher says we have books she had never heard before, and I hope the class has enjoyed the books half as much as I've enjoyed reading to them.

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  94. The books I most remember are from when I was real little.
    The Biggest Bear. (Love the pics in this one.)
    Billy and Blaze.
    And then there were a couple of golden books, Slide Howie Slide and Wilmer the Watchdog.

    Sadly, I never read any series books as a kid although my older sisters did.

    Thanks for the great post!

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  95. Beverly Cleary just celebrated her 100th birthday. There was an article in our paper within the last few weeks.

    I loved many of the same books that all of you have mentioned. I don't think I noticed A Wrinkle in Time mentioned yet. I also liked Nancy Faulkner...my favorite book by her was called A Side Saddle for Dandy. I recently found an old copy on the internet and added it to my collection. As a young teen I got hooked on Grace Livingston Hill. My mom and grandmother had a big collection of those. Mom read many stories to us from the Bobbsy.Twin Series. Sorry...not sure how to spell that one and my phone keeps spell checking.
    I enjoyed reading biographies too.

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  96. CHRISTINA -- I can't even imagine a library as big as the one in Queens would be!

    I'm so glad someone else remembers the scent of those plastic books covers. I can't really say I've ever smelled anything else like it since then, but I'd recognize it immediately. Which means it was probably found to be toxic and that's why it was discontinued. :)

    I have Barbara Michaels keepers, too -- and her Vicki Bliss series that she wrote as Elizabeth Peters. I never got into her Amelia Peabody stuff--but oh, Vicki and that intriguing thief John!! You never knew where and when he'd turn up!

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  97. MYRA -- I'm definitely going to find The Yearling!

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  98. DEBBY -- So happy you and Patti Jo could get together! I loved meeting her at ACFW a few years ago.

    I remember Cheaper by the Dozen, too! A Tree Grows in Brooklyn is a well-known one, but I'm pretty sure I haven't read it as I think I would remember it.

    I was SO happy I'd READ Gone with the Wind before I saw the movie and knew anything about the actors who played the leads. It was so wonderful to imagine them the way I wanted them to be imagined, not like some of them were in the movie.

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  99. Hi, NANCY C! I don't know that I read Flicka--I think I'd remember that. But I do remember "My Friend Flicka," the TV show!

    Mary Stewart is definitely one of my all-time favorites. She could just transport you to all these wonderful settings.


    Have any of you read M.M. Kaye's mysteries or her The Far Pavilions or Shadow of the Moon? Set in India and other intriguing countries she'd lived in.

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  100. Hello, LeAnne!! Another Little House and Scholastic books fan! :)

    Arizona IS amazing, isn't it? I never tire of driving through it--the scenery is always changing. I had no idea until my dad came out here from the Midwest one time on business that it SNOWS - A LOT -- in parts of Arizona.

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  101. Hey, PATTI JO! I'm with you--right this very minute I'd like to do some time travel back to summertime in grade school when I had so much time to be outside and enjoy reading!

    That's so great that you and Debby got to enjoy some time together today!

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  102. Hi, TANYA! So neat that you take your own kids to the library! And what fun to get to read some of your favorites to the class at school. You're introducing a whole new generation to the love of reading!

    That must have been torture for you for your library to only have books one and five of Anne of Green Gables!

    So funny that the stuffed animals didn't get run-of-the-mill illnesses! Maybe you have a future doctor on your hands!? :)

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  103. Hello, CONNIE! I remember Billy & Blaze! The illustrations were so well done, weren't they? Thanks for joining us today for a walk down memory lane!

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  104. Hi, BETTIE! Beverly Cleary is 100??? WOW.

    That's neat that you got to read some of your mother's and grandmother's favorite books.

    A Wrinkle in Time was so intriguing. I just recently read a biography about the author -- like you, I love biographies! (A few months ago I also read ones on C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien.)

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  105. As a child I loved Enid Byton. I read The Magic Faraway tree series so many times along with the Hurrah for the circus series and the naughtiest girl series. There were other series by her also. I also Loved Laura Ingles Wilder, and an Aussie series Seven Little Australians.

    I also loved the Narnia series. Mum bought me the Pollyanna books she loved those books as a child and so did I along with Heidi.

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  106. Hi, JENNY! It's great to "see" you!!! Several have mentioned Enid B's books today, so I'm going to have to see if I can find some. I forgot Pollyanna and Heidi! I wonder if Seven Little Australians was ever available here in the U.S.?

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  107. YIKES! Somehow I missed you, ROSE! Louisa May Alcott, Laura Ingalls Wilder and Nancy Drew seem to be VERY popular today!

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  108. I loved Cherry Ames also I read them more than once also. I had forgotten about them. Also Sally Baxter junior report and Donna Parker.
    A couple of books I loved were Helen Keller's Teacher and another one was Betsy.

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  109. I loved Laura Ingalls Wilder books, Trixi Beldon, The Mystifying Twins, Louisa May Alcott. I still have the first three sets.

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  110. JENNY -- I found "Seven Little Australians" on Kindle -- for FREE!

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  111. JENNY -- so you're going incognito now?? Special undercover assignment? :)

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  112. Hello, MARIANNE! Another Ingalls and Alcott fan!

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  113. Sandra, my father was a firefighter for the Forest Service in his early years. He was gone much of the summer all during my childhood. In his later years, he did have a desk job, working as a fleet manager, overseeing all the vehicles for one of the National Forests in California. I used to say my life was filled with green. I lived in green forests, Dad drove green vehicles, he wore green uniforms and his paychecks were even green. =)

    Glynna, Louisa May Alcott's upbringing was quite different. I hadn't heard of the Transcendentalists until I read about her.

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  114. I love this post. My favorite post mid-elementary was Baby Island. It is about 2 girls ship wrecked with 4 babies. It was my dream story. I love babies. I went on to have 7 children. I also loved the Happy Hollisters. They had a big family and drove around in a school bus. I have big white van now. My husband jokingly says he should have asked about my favorite book before he married me. (he likes kids too) .

    I would love to win your new book Claiming the Single Mom's Heart. Please enter me in the drawing.
    Becky B.

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  115. HI, BECKY! I don't remember Baby Island, but I think I do remember some of the Happy Hollisters. Mysteries, right? Sounds like your dream story came TRUE with 7 kidlets! How fun. :)

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  116. Glynna, We have an Australian Christian readers book alliance which I am one of the co-founders and do most of the admin work for I was in that account when I posted. I use that account to contact the publishers and authors who tour with the ACRBA tours and also get the info on new releases. so I guess yes I was incognito. I just forgot I was there. So glad you got Seven Little Australians. there is a follow up to it but I forget what the name is right now.

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