Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Book Through the Ages

Growing up I had very age appropriate and reading habits. Until I hit the age of 10 or 12 and then I took a turn for the dark side.

One of my first loves was Little House on the Prairie, which, I recently found out is NOT available for an electronic reader. *Sigh* My heart died a little the day I found that out. How could you not love the quaintness and mystery of life in the Big Woods with Ma, Pa, Laura and Mary? It seemed like such a foreign world to me back then. On a side note, if you watched this most recent season of Dancing with the Stars your memories of little Laura Ingalls was probably tarnished as mine was. I had no idea that Melissa Gilbert became a wild one post Laura Ingalls- she rebelled from the prairie and I was displeased.

Ramona Quimby Age 8, Charlottes Web, James and the Giant Peach, A Light in the Attic (all of which are still currently on my bookshelf), Super Fudge. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Amelia Bedelia. 

Remember the Babysitters Club? I had all the books and I'm pretty sure somewhere at my mom's house I still do. Kristy, Claudia, Mary Anne, Stacey, Dawn and Mallory. They were so awesome.  I just looked up the titles to all of the books and had a nice little trip down memory lane. There were 131 different books and 15 Super Series in all. Holy cow! I never realized that. Looking through the titles there is not one that is not familiar to me...I am in the mood to read them again!  I remember I once wrote a letter to Ann M. Martin to tell her how amazing I thought she was. I earned my nerd badge that day- but elevated it several years later when I wrote a letter to Brenda and Dylan from 90210 to let them know what a great decision I thought they made to not sleep together. But I digress. She "wrote me back" in the form of a canned letter. I don't remember exactly what it said but that letter was a source of pride for me. Its probably stuck in the pages of one of those books still. 

R.L. Stein Fear Street Series, Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, Christopher Pike, Nancy Drew Files, Anne of Green Gables and Gone with the Wind (which clearly do not fit into the trend of the books I was reading during this age but to this day they are on my top 10 list). 

V.C. Andrews. I devoured those twisted books. I mean, they were TWISTED. Brothers and sisters hooking up, death, mayhem, craziness.  I think every book had an incest slant to it. I've read them all. I would probably read the all again. What bizarre things to put into books for a teenager....

And then I moved on to True Crime Novels. Thats right. Ted Bundy, The Green River Killer, Jeffery Dahmer....I loved them. It could have been RL Stein or Nancy Drew that lead me down the dark path, but I blame my Grandpa. He was and still is an avid true crime reader. For some reason those twisted personalities intrigued me. I remember in 7th grade I wrote a book review about a book called Cruel Sacrifice by Aphrodite Jones. Its a true novel about 3 teenage girls who torture, and burn and murder another teenage girl with a homosexual motive thrown in. Yup. Other kids were reading heaven knows what. I was reading that. I cannot for the life of me remember the teachers name, but I can see her face plain as day in the back classroom in South Beal as she asked me about the books I read and tried to judge my maturity level. I was a teenager who clearly was working out my issues by funneling my problems into books about murderers. She just let me be.

Thinking back about all of these books makes me want to read them again. For me its like visiting an old friend. I might have to pull out Claudia and the Phantom Phone Call or Flowers in the Attic sometime soon and catch up.


  1. I just love reading your blog, and I couldn't agree more, V.C. Andrews, her books are twisted but I have re-read them all... Keep the blogs coming, I enjoy them..

  2. I remember the Sweet Valley Twins and then Sweet Valley High (you may be a little young for those as I was too old when The Babysitters Club came out.) I do have almost the entire Christopher Pike collection with the exception of a few at the end. I can't wait for my daughter to be old enough to indulge in them. She is heading in that direction...her favorites now are Michigan Chillers. I look foreward to your next blog post.

  3. What a great trip down memory lane :)
    Was it Mrs. Hornak in South Beal?

  4. I never knew about that side of you as a High School student; and I thought I knew my students pretty well ! They say 'readers are leaders' and you were and are one of those.

  5. I was going to say Hornak too. :) Heather I loved the Sweet Vally Twins/High books!

  6. We have lived parallel lives! I also loved all of those books growing up. Your writing has made me take a trip down memory lane. I look forward to your future blogs!

  7. Definitely not Hornack. She was younger.... I can see her face and mannerisims but her name is cloudy in my memory.....Maybe Duv remembers her.

  8. You were lucky enough to have a young teacher for 7th grade english? We had Ms. Wells. Pretty sure I didn't learn anything. I have been reading true crime novels for years and years. It sounds terrible, but the more twisted, the better. I can't understand my fascination with them. But husband says I must have been a serial killer or a homicide investigator in a prior life. I sure hope it was the later :-)