When I saw this post at Fuse #8, I knew it was TOO much fun to pass up.
The premise: You have a time machine. In this time machine
you may take seven books. Your mission is to visit yourself, in the past, and to give yourself the books you wish you would have read as a kid. They can be old books or new books, it doesn’t matter. But they must be books you’ve run across as an adult, loved, and you know would have appealed to (or been good for) little you.
Ages 2 to 5:
Knuffle Bunny Too by Mo Willems
Really, anything by Mo would work. I would have adored his books. Really. I loved to laugh, and I was a precocious little kid. I totally would have identified with Trixie. And I’m sure my parents would have rather read Mo to me instead of those Golden Book books (though The Monster at the End of the Book is a good one) or the Berenstain Bears. (Ugh.)
Moxy Maxwell Does Not Love Stuart Little, by Peggy Gifford
Yeah, I’m still young enough to be read to, but (as I said) I was a precocious kid. What I was into: Little House on the Prairie. What I really needed was a good dose of the humor and wit and practicalness of Moxy Maxwell. I would have gone around imitating her (instead of Laura Ingalls). On second thought, maybe that would be a bad idea?
Ages 10 to 12:
Just Ella, by Margaret Peterson Haddix
I LOVED princesses. (I am a girl, after all.) I remember dreaming about being a princess, being well-off, having everything I wanted in life. I would have handed my little self this book just to remind me that sometimes happily ever afters don’t work out, and it’s not the Prince that always sweeps you off your feet.
Ages 13 through 15:
The Graveyard Book and Coraline, by Neil Gaiman
This was my dark period: I loved Edgar Allen Poe, Ray Bradbury, Piers Anthony. I would have LOVED Neil Gaiman (who was writing when I was 13… how did I miss Sandman?). He totally fits in with my interests at the time: dark, creepy, slightly weird, and yet ultimately hopeful. I was an odd teenager. (I did eventually ditch the nerd look, and get contacts, too…)
Wee Free Men, by Terry Pratchett
Can’t have Gaiman without Pratchett, can we? I would have picked up on the humor, I could have used Tiffany’s strong will and determination in my life, and I would have loved the hint of romance in the later books.
Ages 17 or 18:
Graceling, Kristin Cashore
What I needed at this point in my life: a kick-butt heroine, who didn’t let men decide her fate (or break her heart), who gets out there and challenges the world and the social norms, who finds herself on her own and celebrates that.
And, yeah, she falls in love, but that’s beside the point.
And to balance that out, give me…
Girl at Sea, by Maureen Johnson
Because what every 17-year-old girl really wants is to fall in love with a hot college guy. And MJ gives it to us with humor instead of drama.
There you have it. What would your books be?