Childhood Favorites is a monthly series focusing on beloved books from the past.
Donald Zolan, Quiet Time.
Ok. Bear with me here. I can hear your minds all saying, "Gone with the Wind isn't a children's book!". No. No it isn't. However, I first read it as a 7th grader, which means I was maybe 12?
My 7th grade English teacher wanted us to each read a "classic" novel. I suppose I was feeling a little belligerent that day (I know, me? belligerent? never...) and I didn't really cooperate when our class was in the school library choosing books. I'd either already read the ones available or the others didn't interest me. So my teacher called my Mom. That's right, she called my mother and told her that I wasn't cooperating, and that I needed to read a classic for our class assignment and would my Mom take me to the library?
Yes, Mom took me to the library and we hunted down classics. In a completely ironic twist of fate, one of the books my Mom handed me was Pride and Prejudice and I ultimately dismissed it! I would not pick that particular book up again until I was a college freshman.
However, I found Gone with the Wind sitting on a shelf and that was it. That was the book I wanted to read. It was 1094 pages in paperback, but that didn't deter me. Nope. I was going to read it anyway. My mother, resigned and relieved that I had chosen a book, let me check it out. Even though it wasn't considered a "classic" at the time, my teacher agreed to let me read it. She even said that I only needed to read the first 250 pages because that was about how long the books were that the rest of the class was reading.
250 pages? You're practically still at the barbeque at Twelve Oaks after 250 pages (I'm being facetious). So, me being me, I read the entire book before my classmates had finished their books. And Gone with the Wind was solidified as one of my all-time favorite books ever.
Funny story: one of my Mom's friends found out I was reading Gone with the Wind and was absolutely shocked that Mom would let me read it. Mom remembered seeing Gone with the Wind in a theater with a girlfriend and loving it, so she didn't quite understand why I shouldn't read it. One year for Christmas I received a special anniversary edition hardbound copy. I still have it.
What about you? What is one of your childhood favorites?