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Seventeenth Summer - Maureen Daly
I'll Find My Love - Joan Dirksen
Gone With the Wind - Margaret Mitchell
To Nick From Jan - Julie Campbell Tatham
East Wind West Wind - Pearl Buck
The Good Earth - Pearl Buck
A Fall of Moondust - Arthur C. Clarke
Countdown for Cindy - Eloise Engle
*That last one is really interesting. While definitely a girly YA, with some romance thrown in, it was written expressly to encourage girls with the idea of someday going into space. And this was early...1960-ish, I think
Battle Cry, and Exodus by Leon Uris
Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ by Lew Wallace
The Robe by Lloyd C. Lewis
The Egyptian by Mika Waltari
Twelve O'Clock High by Beirne Lay, Jr.
Beat to Quarters by C. S. Forester
Mutiny on the Bounty
The Bridges at Toko-ri and Hawaii by James A. Michener
Here to Eternity
The Good Earth - Pearl Buck
The Keys of the Kingdom by A.J. Cronin
Hum! I can see two thing lookkng at this list. Where my fondness for historical fiction comes from, and the influence of the movies .
When I was a teen, Gone with the Wind was my default book. If I had nothing else I would pull it down, open to a random page, and read from there. I also enjoyed Michener, John Irving, Salinger, Mary Stewart, Leon Uris and others. The library in my area was miserable so I just ended up reading adult books that passed through our house.
I went from those straight to Cherry Ames.
I spent most of my teens with my nose in classics.
Loved Cherry Ames...there was another series about a nurse but I can't remember her name, but I think she had red hair. Anybody?
Does anyone remember the Donna Parker series? Or Trixie Belden? I read those when I was in my tweens (although we didn't have such a word back then, lol). And there was a series about twins...Double Date was (maybe) the first in the series, I think there were 3 or 4 and ended with Double Wedding (again a maybe...the touchstoens aren't working for those titles)
The Five Find-outers Series by Enid Blyton led to my interest in detective fiction
Roger Lancelyn Green's retelling of the King Arthur myths
Malcolm Saville's Lone Pine series
But the title that had the biggest influence on me was Alan Garner's Owl Service...it led me to the Mabinogion and thence to Celtic literature and history.
Rebecca was my obsession during my teens, I read it over and over.
I read all the series books--Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, Cherry Ames--mostly in their 1950s versions. My aunt gave us some vintage 1930s Nancy Drew books and I remember trying to puzzle out what a "roadster" was. Other things, too, but it is the mystery of the roadster that has stayed with me.
I read the Bobbsey Twins too, in the 1930s versions, I think. The idea of taking the train on an "excursion" to the beach seemed very odd and exotic.
My mother encouraged me to read the Grace Livingston Hill books.
Beyond those I remember Narnia, Make Room for Ducklings, Curious George, The Once and Future King, and the Hardy Boys books.
Anyway, I checked it out so I could have and savor again the experience of reading it. Was I disappointed! It was so...so...baby! I could not understand what I had found so interesting in it before. Much later, I realized that what had made it so special originally was the breakthrough experience of connecting the marks on the paper to words in my head, all by myself. That made the book unforgettable.
I still wonder, if I were to see it again, if I would recognize it.
Around the same time I read a book about a little girl in ancient Egypt. That made a huge impression on me, too, though for this book I can't remember the title or even plot specifics. Still, I often wonder if it might have been that book that sparked my love for ancient history.
Ramona & Beezus (at least 6 of the series)
The Bobsey Twins (at least 2 of the series, maybe 3)
The Boxcar Children (at least 2 of the series, maybe 3)
As a young adult, I fell in Love with Jacqueline Susann. I read several times each
Once is Not Enough
Valley of the Dolls
Later, but still a teen, I read
Gone With the Wind
Right next to it was a 4X7 inch pamphlet, entitled "The exciting World of Dinosaurs, Sinclair Dinoland."
A chill ran down my spine. I KNOW I owned that 8-page booklet, and read it over and over and over. I don't remember the Sinclair exhibit in '65, but I do remember my little feet burning from walking all over that damn place, and those waxy molded plastic dinosaur figurines, made to order!
Wow, that little pamphlet brings back very vague, tiny childhood memories...
I've read and reread the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder
One of my first books was The Call of the Wild, and from that day on, I gravitated towards any book about dogs and wolves, or just animals after that. For example:
The Jungle Books
Silver Chief series
The Incredible Journey
The Wind in the Willows
The Cricket in Times Square
The Hundred and One Dalmatians
My Friend Flicka
And any books written by Jim Kjelgaard, Glenn Balch, Jean Craighead George, Marguerite Henry, Walter Farley, CW Anderson, Sam Savitt, Thomas C Hinkle, Rutherford Montgomery, Ernest Thompson Seton, Albert Payson Terhune and James Oliver Curwood...to name a few!
I discovered Joyce Stranger after grabbing a book out of the library's adult section because it had a dog on the cover, Rex.
I did read the Narnia, Prydain and Middle Earth series, but the animal stories were and still are my favorites.
I have lovely memories of travelling around Germany by train as a student with a copy of Emil und die Detektive. I was in a German course, and used the weekend trips to practice my conversational German. I would chose a compartment with a family already in it. When the train started up I would pull out Emil. The children would laugh at such a big girl reading one of their favourite books.
"Ich lerne Deutsch. Dieses Buch kann ich verstehen." (I'm learning German. I can understand this book.)
And that was the end of reading. Lovely conversations with the children and their parents always followed.