Ever since I started my blog, this was one of the ideas I'd pencilled into my notebook since the start! Today I thought I'd go ahead with it, since I don't think I've created any posts about anything to do with childhood so far. Reading has always been a huge part of my life, and I had the most girly taste in reading ever, haha! So I thought I'd select the most prominent books/book series from my primary and secondary school days.
So this is probably one of the most generic favourite books series' ever, haha! But nevertheless, J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series WAS a huge part of my reading life as a child. Like most British people, I'd go to the cinema every time one of the new movies would come out, but I'd also read the books as well. I remember the first time I picked up a Harry Potter book - it was in year 6 - I'd gotten to the 'honour' of free reader (meaning you could read more challenging books now as part of the school year instead of being restricted to the easier school books) and one week I decided to read the first and also shortest novel in the series - 'The Philosopher's Stone'. I remember thoroughly being immersed into the creative ideas of Rowling and couldn't wait to read more. My dad and nan are also avid readers of this series, and the books now take pride as tilted piles in the office in order to inject a bit of colour!
So Harry Potter was probably the most generic book series I loved, but Jacqueline Wilson's books were the most ESSENTIAL in my life. She is definitely my favourite children's author - I think I own about 30 of her books from over the years! I decided to photograph my absolute top five though - and her book that was aimed slightly more at teens 'Kiss' is my favourite of hers of all time! I found myself SO invested in the characters and the will they/won't they Sylvia and Carl relationship, and the ending was absolutely heartbreaking for more reasons than one! I remember seeing somewhere that at one point she was the most borrowed author in libraries - and I can very much believe that - she was SO popular! Also not photographed but deserve honourable mentions are 'My Sister Jodie', 'Vicky Angel', 'Double Act' and 'Jackie Daydream'.
My school had a HUGE library, and I used to go in there and borrow stuff so much during my first two years of secondary school in particular. I knew my best friend was into this series at the time (in fact, the two audiobooks pictured above were birthday presents from her way back) so I decided to start reading it myself, as I said previously - most of my taste in books was SO girly it was unreal. Anyway, this 'Mates, Dates' series by Cathy Hopkins was a good read for me as I was just approaching my teens and I enjoyed the anecdotes of the girls' teenage years themselves. I think the coolest part of these books though, is that they focused on three girls but each book saw one of the three girls tell the story from their point of view, before switching each book.
This was another book series that I discovered from the school library! Oh by the way, most of these book series are probably only recognisable to British people because I don't think this series in particular was printed worldwide. Anyway, I adored Karen McCombie's writing style, and the first time I picked up one of these books, I was already hooked and was determined to finish the whole series. I was so interested in the characters of Ally, Sandy, Billy, Rowan and Lynn to a lesser extent, so to have that many great characters was already an achievement. I adored reading about all of Ally's dramas and LOVED the pairing of who she ended up with. Sandy's growth was also really interesting and of course I adored the weird but wonderful Rowan - I saw bits of my younger self in both of them. I even re-read this series on holiday last year, haha!
Okay this one wasn't a series, in fact it was the only book that Harper Lee ever wrote, which is baffling after how acclaimed 'To Kill a Mockingbird's is! Anyway, this is probably the oldest book here (oops at me preferring trashy stuff over classics most of the time!) as it was written in the 1960's, although set in the 1930's. I really enjoyed it despite being confused at the beginning about how the young Scout could tell the story so intellectually (although we found out when it was told at the end, which made far more sense). My favourite character was Atticus, and Gregory Peck's portrayal of him in the movie adaptation was pretty much exactly how I imagined him to be, so brilliant casting there. Just a really gripping and interesting read for me, especially the Boo Radley stuff, although I remember a lot of people in my class NOT feeling the same when it was chosen as one of the books we'd have to study for our GCSE literature exam!
Aw, good old Roald Dahl! I began reading his books at a VERY young age, I think about age six or something. His books are simply absolute classics, though! I've always particularly had a soft spot for 'The BFG', 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' and 'Matilda' - his creativity and storytelling is just second to none. The film adaptations for the latter two are excellent as well (even if embarrassingly as a young girl it used to scare me when Augustus Gloop got sucked up the tube - haha!!). But yeah his books were always ones I'd bring on holiday, I ended up getting the box set as you can see above!
This one is slightly more embarrassing to say the least, haha! To be fair though, I was about seven years old when I was into this series! But yeah I remember wishing that I was friends with all five of them haha! The stories were very basic but were aimed for young girls and it very much catered to me at that age! I loved following their adventures and wishing me and my own friends could do stuff like them at the time, this one in particular was my favourite though, because they did a radio broadcast which appealed to me as I've always wanted to be a journalist of some sort since as early as I can remember. Very out of date though, I believe the 'cool' singer of the time that they referred to was Gareth Gates, haha! So yeah the Glitter Girls series by Caroline Plaisted was one of the very first books series I ever read and enjoyed!
And finally, the Diary of a Chav series by Grace Dent! So this is definitely British haha, from the term 'Chav' to all of the other slang in the book! I LOVED this series though, I remember being put off it for ages because of the title - thinking it'd actually be catered for 'chavs'!! But no, this was a great surprise - I loved the unique way that it was set out in diary form, and Shiraz - the main character - is one of my favourite teenage book characters ever, I love how much she grew throughout the series! The 'Diary of a Snob' books were pretty good, too.
So yeah that's it for today! I hope you enjoyed my look back at the books I used to fawn over as a young girl! Did you read any of these books? If not, what were your favourite books when you were younger?