Friday, 29 October 2021

My 10 Favourite Children's Books - Nick Garlick

    I would happily read all of these again. And in several cases have. And if I could only take one, it's the one at the top of the list. I've read it three times and never fail to marvel at the beautiful simplicity of the writing, or the clockwork precision of a plot that snaps perfectly into place. Just magic.

Holes - Louis Sachar

The Phantom Tollbooth - Norton Juster

Abomination – Robert Swindells

The Machine Gunners – Robert Westall

 The Willoughbys – Lois Lowry

The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate – Jacqueline Kelly

Del Toro Moon – Darby Karchut

Framed – Frank Cottrell Boyce

The Ruby in the Smoke (Actually, the whole Sally Lockhart series) – Philip Pullman

Violet and the Pearl of the Orient – Harriet Whitehorn

    I haven't made any allowance for age groups. Or subject matter. Violet's a charming romp while Abomination and The Machine Gunners dig down deep into our bad side. Calpurnia and Ruby are historical novels, Del Toro is horror/action and Framed and The Willoughbys are just delightfully bonkers. As for The Phantom Tollbooth, it's so good and so original that I'd be sneaking it in with Holes while nobody was looking.

    I love them all. 



Claire Fayers said...

Holes, definitely. I'd also add When You Reach Me, by Rebecca Stead - another that has a perfectly constructed plot that all snaps into place. The Owl Service has to be on my list for its use of Welsh myth. Le Petit Prince. Charlotte's Web. To Kill a Mockingbird (though I think that's more a book about childhood than a book for children). Treasure Island for its use of cliff-hangers. The Wind in the Willows, Philip Pullman's Clockwork, and something by Eva Ibbotson.

Nick Garlick said...

Lovely list, Claire. Charlotte's Web and Clockwork almost made the list. Wonderful books. Will definitely look out for When You Reach Me. And I need to read The Owl Service again; something never clicked with me. Or Alan Garner in general (hanging head in shame as I write that.)

Hilary Hawkes said...

A lovely selection. In a list of 10 favourites I would want to include The Butterfly Shell by Maureen White because when I read it touched my heart so much. And Hilary McKay's The Skylarks' War. Other favourites of mine include The Silver Sword, Ballet Shoes and The Secret Garden.

Sharon Tregenza said...

Holes and The Phantom Tollbooth are my top two books. In any genre. I love them both. :)