Saturday, November 18, 2006

Meme: 50 Children's and YA Books

Kelly over at Big A, little a posted Time magazine's list of 100 best English language adult books and 100 best English language children's books the other day, and I revealed I hadn't managed to read even 20 in either category. So Kelly challenged me to come up with a list of fantasy books - she reasoned that I'd beat the world that way ! So after a few days of cogitating, I've compiled a list of 50 children's and YA books (note, they're not ALL fantasy books !) that I think are really good or very memorable. Some are very new indeed, and quite a lot more are considerably older as they're books I thoroughly enjoyed as a child, being so memorable I can still remember the details of the plots 25+ years later.

So the usual "rules" apply: Mark the selections you have read in bold. If you liked it, add a star (*) in front of the title, if you didn't, give it a minus (-).

The list is sorted alphabetically by author surname as I didn't want to get into fights over how I could put X higher than Y in the list ! And yes, I did choose more than one book by some authors - it's my list, so I made the rules...

* The Chronicles of Prydain - Alexander, Lloyd
* Carrie's War - Bawden, Nina
* Death of a Ghost - Butler, Charles
* Ender's Game - Card, Orson Scott
* Summerland - Chabon, Michael
* King of Shadows - Cooper, Susan
* The Dark is Rising sequence - Cooper, Susan
* Stonestruck - Cresswell, Helen
* Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Dahl, Roald
* Matilda - Dahl, Roald
* Ingo - Dunmore, Helen
* The Sea of Trolls - Farmer, Nancy
* Madame Doubtfire - Fine, Anne
* Corbenic - Fisher, Catherine
* Inkheart - Funke, Cornelia
* The Thief Lord - Funke, Cornelia
* The Owl Service - Garner, Alan
* Happy Kid! - Gauthier, Gail
* Stormbreaker - Horowitz, Anthony
* Whale Rider - Ihimaera, Witi
* Finn Family Moomintroll - Jansson, Tove
* Fire and Hemlock - Jones, Diana Wynne
* The Phantom Tollbooth - Juster, Norton
* The Sheep Pig - King Smith, Dick
* Stig of the Dump - King, Clive
* A Wizard of Earthsea - Le Guin, Ursula
* The Voyage of the Dawn Treader - Lewis, C S
* The House at Norham Gardens - Lively, Penelope
* Goodnight Mister Tom - Magorian, Michelle
* The Changeover - Mahy, Margaret
* The Stones are Hatching - McCaughrean, Geraldine
* The White Darkness - McCaughrean, Geraldine
* Beauty - McKinley, Robin
* Sabriel - Nix, Garth
* The Borrowers - Norton, Mary
* Mrs Frisby and the Rats of NIMH - O'Brien, Robert
* Z for Zachariah - O'Brien, Robert
* A Dog So Small - Pearce, Philippa
* Life As We Knew It - Pfeffer, Susan Beth
* A Hat Full of Sky - Pratchett, Terry
* His Dark Materials sequence - Pullman, Philip
* How I Live Now - Rosoff, Meg
* Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban - Rowling, J K
* Holes - Sachar, Louis
* The Foreshadowing - Sedgwick, Marcus
* Marianne Dreams - Storr, Catherine
* When the Siren Wailed - Streatfield, Noel
* The Bartimaeus Trilogy - Stroud, Jonathan
* The Hobbit - Tolkien, J R R
* Charlotte's Web - White, E B

And I make no apology for the Britishness of the list - or for the fact that I've included an entire series on occasion. If you don't like the list, go and create one of your own ! *grins*


Anonymous said...

Yay! I'm glad you like Carrie's War enough to include it!

Have to say there's loads there I haven't read. So I will refer back here next time I'm looking for new stuff to read (ie after I've read the huuuge shelf-full already waiting).

Michele said...

I certainly did enjoy Carrie's War - thanks for the recommendation !

Of course, after I posted the list, I remembered at least half a dozen other books I should have included (not least of which was Penelope Lively's The Ghost of Thomas Kempe, another schooldays book that I recall vividly 25+ years later ! Grr !

I hope you find some interesting books amongst the ones you've not read...

Lady S. said...

Glad you found the mention of this, Michele. It's a great list and I'll be happily bolding and italicizing as soon as I can.

Nancy said...

I'm struggling with the first book in the Bartimeus trilogy now. I don't know why I'm struggling, but so far, I just don't love it.

Michele said...

Glad you found the mention of this, Michele.

Lady S, I'm not quite sure what you mean by "found the mention of this" list - if you mean I found it online, I didn't. This list originates with me because I found the two lists which Kelly posted to be so Americanised, I was struggling to find more than a dozen or so that I'd read...

Nancy, I'm sorry to hear you're struggling with The Amulet of Samarkand. It's true it's not for everyone - but what about the audiobook ? I know quite a few child lit Bloggers who swear by the audio versions of this trilogy...

Lady S. said...

Sorry, Michele! I shouldn't be allowed near a keyboard this tired. I meant I'd noticed you had a link to my LJ mention of your list, and I was glad you'd seen that mention. Really my comment here was just all about the next line ('It's a great list...')

Michele said...

Ah right - confusion abounds ! Never mind, Lady S - we've all been there...

Literaticat said...

you don't know me... but I found my way to this meme and did it. with sadly mixed results.


Michele said...

I didn't think your results were that bad - and have just said so on your Blog !

Anita from Jacksonville said...

I was happy to see Nancy Farmer's SEA OF TROLLS make your list. The trolls were quite intriquing being shape shifters. I especially loved the Queen and her harem of louts. I found your blog when it was listed in the School Library Journal. It's great. I'll be back

Michele said...

Hi Anita and welcome ! Thanks - I loved The Sea of Trolls - I'm waiting in anticipation for the promised sequel !