For this week’s Weekly Geeks, we were to write about our fond memories of childhood books, either with a list of your favorite books or a review of your favorite childhood book. Or something else entirely around the theme of childhood books. I didn’t plan it this way, but this past Monday, while at my parents’ house for an extended Mother’s Day weekend, I caught myself rummaging through boxes of books, and came across many of my favorite childhood reads, one of which is mentioned here in Part I of what will be at least three parts. So it worked out perfectly for this week’s theme. I also read over other Weekly Geeks who have responded so far to their memories of childhood books, which in turn triggered other memories. That will be yet another part with which I will continue most likely tomorrow. Part II will be more of my favorite childhood books, which also most likely will be tomorrow after fooling around with making sure the text flowed around the pictures of the books mentioned in this first part.
I don’t know what the first book was that my mother read me and when I called her this afternoon to ask her, she didn’t either. “Possibly, Green Eggs and Ham or something like that,” she said. She remembered later that we also had Disney books on records to which I listened, including one based on the now infamous Songs of the South, based on the Uncle Remus tales by Joel Chandler Harris.
“You liked books from the time you were a baby. We got tickled at you when we couldn’t figure out what was so interesting about a book of Dr. Spock’s,” she said. However, whatever it was, I liked to turn the pages of the book, even though my mother said she doesn’t think it contained many pictures. She said I also was fascinated with hymnals. I honestly don’t remember any of this, but my mother said she has a picture of me with one of Dr. Spock’s books. I do remember, though, a Clifford the Big Red Dog book that I had in kindergarten or maybe first grade, but I think it was when I was younger than first grade. And I remember Richard Scarry books: While I was over at my parent’s this past weekend, I came across this book:
which to me was one of the strangest books from my childhood. It was about a dog who rejected by his owner, Alexandra, has his friends construct an egg out of clay, reed and river grasses from which Fletcher emerges after she becomes saddened when he disappears. Of course, for strange, nothing to me beat Maurice Sendak’s classic The Night Kitchen for strangeness. If you’ve never seen it, I don’t know if I can describe it. It’s just strange. I think it might have haunted me like no other book that I know, except maybe his other book Where The Wild Things Are, which I think I picked up at the library within the last year and actually laughed.