Top Ten Tuesday

Hi guys, so I know I did Trailers and Teasers Tuesday, but honestly, I’m not really psyched for any upcoming movies right now. I haven’t gotten into the Marvel movie universe (which is kind of dominating the theaters) because there just seems to be so many arguments and disagreements in the fandom, so…I kind of just avoided that whole mess. Confrontation scares me, so I noped right out of that whole situation.

ANYWAYS, thatartsyreadergirl assigns weekly blog prompts, if you will, and they looked really cool to do, so I’mma just pick and choose the ones I want to do! (For now, because honestly, there are some really good ideas on her blog! Check here for her Top Ten Tuesday masterpost, if you’d like!

And without further ado, here is a list of five of my favorite childhood books! (I’m a rule breaker, what can I say?) Because honestly, I feel like if I wrote about 10, I would get that glossy look in my eyes after 5…

(Beware! Affiliate links ahead!)

1.) First Test by Tamora Pierce

Keladry of Mindelan is the first girl who dares to take advantage of a new rule in Tortall—one that allows females to train for knighthood. After years in the Yamani Islands, she knows that women can be warriors, and now that she’s returned home, Kel is determined to achieve her goal. She believes she is ready for the traditional hazing and grueling schedule of a page. But standing in Kel’s way is Lord Wyldon. The training master is dead set against girls becoming knights. He says she must pass a one-year trial that no male page has ever had to endure. It’s just one more way to separate Kel from her fellow trainees. But she is not to be underestimated. She will fight to succeed, even when the test is unfair.

I loved this book/series for a lot of reasons, but I’m gonna try to only mention one big reason for each book. For First Test, that reason is simple. Keladry’s characterization. She is a kickass girl protagonist that deals with bullies with the amount of grace that I wish I had possessed when I was getting bullied. Also, she was NOT written to be pretty. Like…at all. And I don’t know about you, but I was getting really sick of the “pretty girl but she’s still badass” trope.

2.) Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder

The first book in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s treasured Little House series—now available as an ebook! This digital version features Garth Williams’s classic illustrations, which appear in vibrant full color on a full-color device and in rich black-and-white on all other devices.

This beloved story of a pioneer girl and her family begins in 1871 in a log cabin on the edge of the Big Woods of Wisconsin. Four-year-old Laura lives in the little house with her Pa, her Ma, her sisters Mary and Carrie, and their dog, Jack. Pioneer life is sometimes hard for the family, but it is also exciting as they celebrate Christmas with homemade toys and treats, do the spring planting, bring in the harvest, and make their first trip into town. And every night Laura and her family are safe and warm in their little house, with the happy sound of Pa’s fiddle to send them off to sleep.

The nine Little House books are inspired by Laura’s own childhood and have been cherished by generations of readers as both a unique glimpse into America’s frontier history and as heartwarming, unforgettable stories.

I really loved this book (and it’s entire series) when I was a kid. The major reason that sticks out to me, even now, is that it is just such a wholesome story. Yes, there are sad parts, but it’s mostly a story of how families stick together no matter what, and that no matter how society treats you, you should always find a way to be happy and proud of yourself.

3.) Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell

Far off the coast of California looms a harsh rock known as the island of San Nicholas. Dolphins flash in the blue waters around it, sea otter play in the vast kep beds, and sea elephants loll on the stony beaches.

Here, in the early 1800s, according to history, an Indian girl spent eighteen years alone, and this beautifully written novel is her story. It is a romantic adventure filled with drama and heartache, for not only was mere subsistence on so desolate a spot a near miracle, but Karana had to contend with the ferocious pack of wild dogs that had killed her younger brother, constantly guard against the Aleutian sea otter hunters, and maintain a precarious food supply.

More than this, it is an adventure of the spirit that will haunt the reader long after the book has been put down. Karana’s quiet courage, her Indian self-reliance and acceptance of fate, transform what to many would have been a devastating ordeal into an uplifting experience. From loneliness and terror come strength and serenity in this Newbery Medal-winning classic.

The story of Karana is such a heartbreakingly beautiful one. I remember reading The Island of the Blue Dolphins and falling in love with the language that was used. The descriptions are so beautiful and well written that even as an eight year old, I could see everything Karana saw, and I felt everything she felt. This book is simply beautiful.

4.) The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn’t live in a graveyard, raised and educated by ghosts.

There are dangers and adventures for Bod in the graveyard. But it is in the land of the living that the real danger lurks, for it is there that the man Jack lives .

Alright, so I didn’t read The Graveyard Book as a kid because by the time it was published, I was already in my teens, BUT, if the book HAD been published when I was a kid, I still would’ve read and loved the absolute shit out of it. It’s basically like the story of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book, except…in a graveyard…because Neil Gaiman is the really cool punkish goth dad that we readers deserve.

5.) Wonder by R. J. Palacio

I won’t describe what I look like. Whatever you’re thinking, it’s probably worse.

August Pullman was born with a facial difference that, up until now, has prevented him from going to a mainstream school. Starting 5th grade at Beecher Prep, he wants nothing more than to be treated as an ordinary kid—but his new classmates can’t get past Auggie’s extraordinary face. WONDER, now a #1 New York Times bestseller and included on the Texas Bluebonnet Award master list, begins from Auggie’s point of view, but soon switches to include his classmates, his sister, her boyfriend, and others. These perspectives converge in a portrait of one community’s struggle with empathy, compassion, and acceptance.

Every single child who has been bullied, known someone who was bullied, or even is the bully, should read Wonder. It isn’t just a book that teaches kids to be kind, it is a book that allows kindness for kids who don’t think they deserve it. Auggie is one of the most beautiful characters ever written, and I will admit that aI cried like a bitch during parts of this book. It just…resonates.

Sooo that’s it for my list! Do you have any books that you think I should have put up there? Do you agree with my picks? Feel free to leave a comment if so!

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