Thursday, May 23, 2013

Summer Reading List: Throwback Thursday Edition

In honor of social media's most popular hashtag and summertime, here's a top-five list of childhood reads. Reminiscing while reading a childhood favorite in the shade of a tree is a great way to spend a warm summer day:

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  1. Charlotte's WebE.B. White
    I can't tell you how many times I read this book. I'm pretty sure we read this every year in school until middle school, and I know I wore the cover of my paperback. I've watched the live-action and animated movies. Of course, the movies don't nearly live up to the books, but they're a nice salute. And of course, E.B. White also penned the classic Stuart Little. Check that out, too.
  2. A Series of Unfortunate Events, Lemony Snicket (Daniel Handler)
    You could start from the beginning of this 13-book series and have a built-in summer reading list. I mean, that's the practical thing to do if you haven't read this series. If you have, simply pick your favorite for an afternoon read. Although if we're anything alike, you'll still start from the beginning. Of course, you might be turned off if you watched the not-so-fantastic movie adaptation of the first three (Maybe four? Maybe less?) books, but don't let that deter you! The books, as usual, are much better than the movie. Just try not to imagine Jim Carrey as Count Olaf.
  3. Coraline, Neil Gaiman
    I didn't read this novella as a child. Hell, I had never heard of it until the movie it came out, and as much as I want to dislike it (No, it's not directed by Tim Burton), it's a fantastically creepy film. And of course, it was just as, if not more, fantastically creepy. So get a little macabre this summer. Nothing like a dark read while sitting in the bright sun.
  4. The Giving Tree, Shel Silverstein
    A book that has been giving for generations. I remember my classmates and I arguing over who got to check out this book, and other Silverstein titles, every week during library time. At one point, the school library was requesting copies from other libraries. Finally, they broke down and bought a few more. Silverstein was definitely a gifted man. If you haven't read his work, you're missing out. Aside from The Giving Tree, check out Where the Sidewalk Ends, Falling Up, A Light in the Attic and The Missing Piece. He has written a variety of children's, adult and poetry--something for everyone.
  5. The Phantom TollboothNorton Juster
    Last but definitely not least, The Phantom Tollbooth. This could be my all time favorite childhood book. Not only is it entertaining and imaginative, it's educational and filled with puns. Like Tock the watch dog sporting an alarm clock, or the Doldrums, a colorless anti-laugh zone. Now that you're older, this book will make you chuckle but it'll also take you back to your childhood adventures--carpet lava, blanket fortresses, cardboard crowns, etc.
What was your favorite childhood book? Let us know! Tweet us or drop us an email! Now get outside and enjoy the summertime!

Until next time, kiddies...

- J

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