Monday 30 March 2015

Gemma Bovery

I first learned of Gemma Bovery the book via the film. My friend Sim at Chapter 1 Take 1 featured the film trailer in September last year. Naturally, I was immediately smitten with the trailer. So funny, so fun. Soon I was discovering that the film was based on a 1999 graphic novel. Naturally I ordered it online immediately. The film is finally screening in Australia as part of the Alliance Française French Film Festival this year, not that I'll get to see it there, but I need to be prepared to see the film, so I grabbed an opportunity to read the book when I was in Newcastle for the Newcastle Writer's Festival last weekend.

I was drawn in by the very first sentence.

Gemma Bovery has been in the ground three weeks. 

Ok, you have my attention!

Our narrator is Raymond Joubert, a middle aged man who is now running the family bakery in a small town in Normandy. Raymond has full access to Gemma's diaries after her death, and he narrates from reading her diaries, and also his own observations of the events since the Bovery's moved to France. Set in both Normandy and London, the present and the near past Gemma Bovery is a fascinating modern riff on Flaubert's masterpiece Madame Bovary. I have read Madame Bovary but a number of years ago, so that while I remember broad brush strokes of action, I don't remember particular details. Joubert points out the parallels between the Bovery Bovary stories so that even those who weren't at all familiar with Madame Bovary would still find Gemma Bovery compelling.

And there are many parallels, so many affairs, so much heartache, accumulating debts and the gossiping nature of small town France. I've only read a handful of graphic novels but I do think that Gemma Bovery would be one of my favourites so far.

And it is laugh out loud funny at times.

I remarked her companion at once: an anglais, about 35, in breeding condition; an expensive linen jacket, his inside leg measurement much en valeur

It is written in an odd mix of English, French (sometimes translated, other times not) and Franglais. Posy Simmonds would appear to speak much better French than I do, she also has a great understanding of the French I think. I'm not sure how easy Gemma Bovery would be for someone with absolutely no French.

Gemma Bovery was apparently first published in The Guardian, which I find quite intriguing. Not that there is anything wrong with newspapers publishing cartoon strips, indeed they have quite a long tradition of exactly that. It's just that Gemma Bovery has what would be described in film or tv classifications nudity, sex scenes, language (I certainly learnt some new French words) and adult themes. I'm not sure it would get published in newspapers here. Perhaps it was in a somewhat different format then?

I found a rather intriguing youtube video of Posy Simmonds discussing Flaubert, and also the real life inspiration behind Gemma Bovery.

Posy also talks about the graphic novel format.

The pictures do all the work of description. They do everything, they do weather, they do landscape, they do details.

I'm really looking forward to seeing the movie.

Dreaming of France is a wonderful Monday meme
from Paulita at An Accidental Blog 

French Bingo 2015

Saturday 28 March 2015

The Dutch Twins

The Dutch Twins was the first title in what was to become a popular and enduring series of Twin Books by Lucy Fitch Perkins. She wrote more than 25 Twin books, it was a popular series and other writers continued it after her death. It's readily available online

The Dutch Twins is certainly of it’s time (1911). Gentle stories of every day life in Holland for two young twins, Kit and Kat, not yet big enough to be called by their real names of Christopher and Katrina. The twins live with their parents on a traditional Dutch farm. They help their parents with chores- tending the vegetables, and helping feed the animals- the cow, the geese, chickens and ducks. The six stories are snatches of their ordinary life- a fishing trip, going to the market with their father and going to church on Sunday.

There is typical sibling rivalry, gentle ribbing, and quite a lot of comment on the difference between girls and boys. Kit is always expressing how much better boys are than girls. He is sometimes rebuked either directly in words, or other times by the events that follow. Sometimes it is reinforced. 

“No,” said Vrouw Vedder. “Girls shouldn’t think much. It isn’t good for them. Leave thinking to the men. You can stay home and help me. "

Theirs is a simple rural lifestyle. They travel on a barge on the canals to town for market. They skate on these same canals when they have iced over in the winter. Their diet is rather modest and yet fascinating. It reminded me somewhat of the diet described in Heidi- although the twins did have a better variety of food available to then. For breakfast they often had bread and milk. Their father grows potatoes, cabbage, beetroot and carrots, and this forms a large part of the diet. The twins are allowed to drink weak coffee on Sundays and special days like Christmas. I was surprised to see that salt herring didn’t rate a mention until page 106. 

I am a great fan of Dutch Breakfast, having experienced it in 2013 so I was intrigued enough by the mention of buttermilk porridge to try it out. I checked out an online recipe this week. It was ok. I used  coconut sugar which is not traditional I'm sure, but I had some in the house and figured it would give it a nice caramel colour- which it did. 

I suspect that I made it too thick also. My Dutch sources tell me that karnemelkpap is more drinking consistency when you buy it in the supermarket there. 

On the whole it was a sweet story through most of it. Although I was surprised when in the final story Grandmother tells a story, much like a traditional fairy tale with child killings and even pickling of children. 

The Cambridge Guide to Children’s Books in English says that she wrote the Twin books  to encourage “mutual respect for the best which other nations bring to this shore (America).” At times it is a little too earnest, such as the inclusion of the Dutch National Anthem. It was a very interesting historical detail to learn about dog drawn milk carts. I’d never heard of this before though it seems it was quite a widespread practice. 

I do know that this style of book would have been a difficult sell to my son when he was younger. I wonder how modern children (and their parents) would take to it? I guess I almost see it as more of historical interest now. 


This post is linked to Weekend Cooking
a fabulous weekly meme at BethFishReads

Monday 23 March 2015

Newcastle Writers Festival

A few years ago I set myself the goal of going to every Australian Writers Festival, and last weekend I went to the Newcastle Writers Festival for the first time as part of this quest. The Newcastle Writers Festival is three years old this year, and it seems to be going from strength to strength. I hadn't been able to attend the first two years due to work commitments but this year I was able to arrange things and go. I'm so glad I did, it was a great festival, with lots of fascinating sessions held over three days.

I have now been to Melbourne Writers Festival, Sydney Writers Festival, Mudgee Readers Festival (did you see what they did there? I really like it) and the Newcastle Writers Festival. All have been great and well worth attending, but the smaller festivals really do have a lot going for them. It's all very easy going, easy to navigate, and you have much more opportunity to talk to the writers, and other attendees will sit down next to you and chat.

Newcastle Writers Festival is held in Newcastle City Hall, i.e. all the events are in the same building, and so everything is easily accessible. It turned out that I only went to paid ticketed events at Newcastle, as they were the sessions I most wanted to go to, and there was no trouble gaining access to the sessions, and you don't have to queue like you do in Sydney. It is impossible to attend back to back sessions at Sydney Writers Festival. There you have to queue for the free sessions for at least half an hour or 45 minutes to have a chance to get in. Once last year in Sydney I queued for the requisite 45 minutes to see a free session with Fiona Macfarlane only to miss out on getting in by about 5 people. That kind of experience doesn't make for happy festival goers.

Every time I tell people I'm going to a Writers Festival many people will always ask am I writing a book, or if I plan to. I'm always surprised by this, and surprised by how many people don't understand what a writers festival is. A writers festival is really a festival of ideas. They're such a condensed format for discussing books and ideas. An important source of intellectual public discussion that seems to be too often lacking in our society. Reading is typically a solitary pursuit by it's very nature, it's so wonderful to come together with other readers and discuss books we love, or find new books to enjoy.  Of course writers festivals also do often provide sessions and workshops for those interested in becoming a writer or improving their writing. I haven't been to any of those but understand that they are very popular.

Festival programmers go to a lot of effort to put on a really broad range of sessions, with well known as well as lesser known authors. The Newcastle Writers Festival this year hosted 130 authors speaking at 60 events. I got to hear a fabulous selection of authors this weekend- Helen Garner, Michael Robotham, Jessica Rudd, Garth Nix, Magdalena Ball, Bob Brown, Don Watson, Munjed Al Muderis, Favel Parrett, Brooke Davis, Courtney Collins, Erik Jensen, David Leser and David Roland.  Sadly I missed out on Les Murray (although he had to withdraw), Blanche D'Alpuget, Marion Halligan, Geraldine Doogue, many, many others and all of the Kids Program.

And boy they covered some ground. Everything from mindful meditation, the nature of truth, the importance of curiosity and kindness to suicidal ideation and many sorts of mental illness, violent fantasists, global warming, Australian Detention Centres and refugee policies. Wow, no wonder I was tired after a few days of all that and needed a beautiful walk along the breakwall at Nobby's to recover.

Where else could I walk given I'd been
looking at the NWF logo for days?

I'm not always usually very good at writing up individual sessions, even though I intend to every time. I do hope to write about some of these individual sessions in the coming few days and weeks, they were so very good, and provided much food for thought. Bob Brown was sensational, a true inspiration. Garth Nix was also tremendous, and I'm so glad that I listened to the audio book of Mister Monday (see my review) as I was driving to and from Newcastle.

So there really is no excuse not to get along to your local writers festival- they seem to be springing up everywhere. They are amazing community events and really worthwhile attending. I can't wait to find my next one, and hope to revisit Newcastle Writers Festival many times.

Sunday 22 March 2015

When the Night Comes

I didn't know a lot about When the Night Comes when I picked it up. I'd heard much of Favel Parrett's first book, Past the Shallows, which I still haven't read, but I was about to see her in a session at the Newcastle Writer's Festival, and as I was keen to do some prereading, so I thought I'd check out her newest book. 

When the Night Comes is an odd book- an odd mix of story that takes us between Tasmania and Denmark, and diverts off to Antarctica at times. Structured with two linking story lines, When the Night Comes tells the story of 13 year old Isla, who has recently moved to Hobart, and Bo, a Danish cook, working in the kitchen of the Nella Dan, an Antarctic supply ship. Clearly these two story lines were going to be linked, but I found it frustrating and annoying that how they were linked wasn't really clear until 120 pages in. The time lines seemed blurred before that.

I enjoyed Isla's story more I suppose. Isla is moving to Hobart with her mother and brother when we meet her at the start of the book. Her mother is distant, leaving the kids alone on a rough crossing to Tasmania.

Mum said that she would just have one more cigarette and then we could go inside. I looked at her white face and her white hands. She was always sitting places by herself in the night- always sitting by herself having one more cigarette. 

Isla's Mum was to remain rather distant throughout the book. Clearly there has been a marriage or relationship break down, I really would have liked to learn more of that throughout the book.

It was only the ship that was keeping us safe. Only thin layers of steel and an engine pumpkin away in the dark were keeping us above the water, which would gladly swallow us all up like we had never ever been. 

The book is certainly not complimentary to Hobart, which I have always found to be a charming city to visit. The weather is always cold and miserable (which may be true to some extent), and there is rather a sense of foreboding.

Some of the steps were bowed and stained, and the stains looked like old blood rusted orange with time. Blood soaked into the stone. We'd go down one step at a time as quickly as we could. Down, down, and we'd try not to look ahead into the dark lane. But at the bottom, in the cold cobbled shadows, ghost would claw at our clothes, try to grab hold of our hair, whisper in the echo of the stone. 

Bo's story is a bit more distant for me. Bo is Danish, he grew up on an island, with a small blue and orange boat that he fished from with his father when he was not off sailing. Now Bo is a sailor himself, or a cook, working the Nella Dan on her summer supply trips to Antarctica. It never occurred to me that Antarctic supply vessels would need their own baker.

Leo has been here for hours already baking. The life of a baker. The galley warm with the smell of bread, with the smell of pastries coming out of the oven to be cooled and glazed.

I hope these Antarctic bakers are still there, not replaced by frozen bread. I like the notion of ships smelling of freshly baked bread heading off into the Southern Ocean. The story seemed more about the Nella Dan than Bo in many ways. MV Nella Dan was a real ship, made fictitious here, although she meets the same fate.

Rather unusually there is a suggested playlist at the back of the book. A list of songs mentioned during the book, most of them already old when the book is set in the mid 80s. I listened to these songs while reading the book. Many of them were familiar of course, a few new to me.

Favel Parrett was awarded an Australian Antarctic Arts Fellowship as part of the research for this book. I like to think that in another life I'd be awarded an Australian Antarctic Arts Fellowship. I wonder if they need a part-time book blogger to go? Alison Lester's Sophie Scott Goes South (see my review) was also the result of an Australian Antarctic Arts Fellowship.

Saturday 21 March 2015


I know some people get freaked out by moths. Thankfully I'm not one of those people.

Moths are hard to photograph.

But they're rather extraordinary when you get up close.

I'm not sure that they even have a face. 

But they have an amazing symmetry.

And such a beauty in the details. 

There really is beauty everywhere if you look.
It's one of the reasons I like taking photos. 

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Wednesday 18 March 2015

Glenda Millard's Top Ten Australian Children's Books

I was very excited to come across this list last week. I love any list, but especially an Aussie list of course, and it was so nice to see this one by Glenda Millard- one of our most original writers. And it had just so much synchronicity. I had just recently come across The Man Who Loved Boxes (and read it), and here it was again!

1. The Man Who Loved Boxes - Stephen Michael King (see my review)

2. Fox - Margaret Wild, Ron Books

3. The Trouble with Dogs - Bob Graham

4. Withering-by-Sea - Judith Rossell (see my review)

5. Bird and Sugar Boy - Sofie Laguna

6. The Slightly True Story of Cedar B. Hartley - Martine Murray (see my review)

7. The Running Man - Michael Gerard Bauer (see my review)

8. Something in the World called Love - Sue Saliba

9. Sea Hearts - Margo Lanagan

10. Leaf - Stephen Michael King


I'm ashamed to have not read Michael Gerard Bauer and Margo Lanagan- not just these particular titles, but any of their works. Bird and Sugar Boy has been lurking in my TBR for some time. I've not heard of Something in the World called Love before- there's always at least one I've never heard of...

August 2015 now 6/10 as I have just read, and totally loved, The Running Man. This list has 3 books I really loved- The Running Man, The Slightly True Story of Cedar B. Hartley and Withering-By-Sea. I think Glenda Millard has excellent taste....  Now I'm really curious about those titles unread. Something about the cover of Bird and Sugar Boy always appealed to me, I think it's next on the hit list.

September 2015 7/10

Monday 16 March 2015

Madame Pamplemousse Series

I do so love Books You've Never Heard of But Just Have to Read. Happily I found the third book in the Madame Pamplemousse series browsing my local library shelves- an excellent source for such books of course. Being moderately OCD about such things I had to get the first in the series sent over so I could read them in order. It was indeed so delicious that I couldn't wait to get the second book from the library. These books are such perfect little confections it made sense to review them collectively.

Madame Pamplemousse and her Incredible Edibles is the first of this utterly delightful series, set in Paris, but written by Englishman Rupert Kingfisher. Madeline is a young girl forced to work under rather slave like conditions in her uncle's Parisian restaurant every summer while her parents go on a safari or round the world cruise. Madeline's uncle is the deliciously named Monsieur Lard, who runs The Squealing Pig. Monsieur Lard is jealous of his young niece's abilities in the kitchen.

The truth was she had made him so violently jealous he would never allow her to go near a cooker again. So instead she had to scrub the plates, pots and pans- giant heaps of them stacked up to the ceiling and everyone covered in slimy fat. 

One day Madeline becomes distracted by a cat while going to buy some Mixed Innards Pate for The Squealing Pig, and so she finds Madame Pamplemousse and Her Incredible Edibles.

The cheeses are of an unimaginable smelliness, some dating back to medieval times, and each of the pots and jars have their contents written in fine, purple letters: Scorpion Tails in Smoked Garlic Oil, Crocodile Kidneys in Blackberry Wine, Cobra Brains in Black Butter, Roast Piranha with Raspberry Coulis, Electric Eel Pate with Garlic and Prunes, Great White Shark Fin in Banana Liquor and Giant Squid Tentacle in Jasmine-Scented Jelly. 

I devoured Madame Pamplemousse and her Incredible Edibles in record time. It's an utter delight. There does not seem to be all that much out there about Rupert Kingfisher, but I was not surprised to find that he loved Roald Dahl, comics and horror as a child- the shadow of Roald Dahl certainly looms large in his writings.

The second book in the series is Madame Pamplemousse and the Time Travelling Cafe. Paris is threat from an evil President.

The President hated Paris. He loathed it with a passion. To him it seemed a lazy, slovenly city, where people did notghing but eat and talk and fall in love when they should have been doing something far more practical, like cutting down rainforests instead. And so he began planning Paris's systematic destruction. 

There is a rather complex plot involving time travel, coffee and mythic beasts in a plot to save Paris from the evil President and stupid government. While there were some glimpses of Paris this story didn't work for me in the way the first one did.

The Third book in the series, Madame Pamplemousse and the Enchanted Sweet Shop had me in from the very first sentence.

In the city of Paris, in the middle of the River Seine, there is an island called the Isle Saint Louis. 

Oh there is indeed, and it is magnificent. I became lost in reverie at this point and had to start again. It is on Ile Saint Louis that the Enchanted Sweet Shop appears one day. Our hero Madeleine has recently started at a new school, and settled in with a group of friends. Then a new girl, Mirabelle, starts the next term, and things start to unravel for her. Mirabelle bullies Madeleine using rather typical techniques of high school girls, and turns her group of friends against her.

Madame Bonbon finds Madeleine crying in Notre Dame and offers her solace with a special box of her sweets.

Before Madeleine could object, Madame Bonbon took her by the hand and led her out of the cathedral into the fading winter light. The wind had picked up and they walked briskly up and they walked briskly to avoid the freezing gusts, crossing over the water on to the narrow streets of Saint Louis. 

The story has a nice mix of real world bullying story, friends and fitting in within social groups, and more fantastical elements, time travel again, witches, mermaids.

'Well Madeleine, I have to say, you are different, but that's nothing to be ashamed of. And as for "fitting in", personally I never have, nor do I intend doing so. But you know,' she paused to smile, 'that has never stopped me having friends.'

I'm glad to have found this lovely series of books. 

French Bingo 2015

Dreaming of France is a wonderful Monday meme
from Paulita at An Accidental Blog 

Saturday 14 March 2015

Dick Bruna Huis

I've been reading some books set in Holland this month, and it got me to reminiscing about our lovely stay in Holland in 2013. It was all too short, but there were many highlights packed into just a few days.

One was a visit to Dick Bruna Huis at the Centraal Museum in Utrecht. It was opened Feb 16 2006 by HRH Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands as a tribute to Dick Bruna.

I loved the gold Miffy welcoming you inside. 

Every museum and exhibition I saw in Holland was really cool. They put a lot of effort into how things are displayed, and do it imaginatively. Dick Bruna Huis was no exception. 

So many Miffys!

So many translations.

Cute Miffy seats. 

Dutch museums made great efforts for us English speakers.
It seems Miffy is popular in Japan too. 

Lots of floor height activities for the littlies. 

Animation figures for Miffy the Movie

There was an exhibition called With Miffy in the Attic, a rather odd intersection of Miffy with Contemporary Art. 

I don't pretend to understand it. 

I always find it interesting to see displays on how an author/illustrator/artist does their work. I don't think I knew that Dick Bruna did as much non-Miffy work as he did. He designed thousands of book covers and posters for the family A.W. Bruna & Zoon including Maigret covers. 

Did I mention that I really loved gold Miffy?

The gift shop was loaded with many cool things, and everything Miffy. 

Who wouldn't want a Miffy lamp?
I might have bought one if it wasn't
Completely Impractical to get back to Australia. 

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Friday 13 March 2015

The Man Who Loved Boxes

I came across this title recently in the list of 25 Classic Australian Kids Books from Good Reading Magazine last year. It's an intriguingly titled book. I've read a few of Stephen Michael King's books, and seen him speak in person, so I was curious enough to search it out. Turns out it is his first picture book from 1995.

The Man Who Loved Boxes didn't grab me straight away. It needed a few reads for me to appreciate it's gentle warmth. The story of a father and son.

The father has difficulty expressing his love for his son. He loves boxes, and can do all sorts of things with them.

The Man Who Loved Boxes is a beautiful book about two people bonding over shared activities. Even in this, his earliest book Stephen Michael King had developed his distinctive style of illustration. I love the palette he used. Purple on every page. Always good.

And scowling old ladies.
Always great.
The Man Who Loved Boxes is well worth seeking out.

Thursday 12 March 2015

100 Best Children's Books Ever

Quality book lists just keep coming! This one from The Telegraph in the UK, their selection of the 100 best children's books of all time. Irresistible.

1. Curious George - H.A Rey 1941

2. Where The Wild Things Are - Maurice Sendak 1963

3. Father Christmas - Raymond Briggs 1973

4. Gorilla - Anthony Browne 1983

5. The Mick Inkpen Collection - Mick Inkpen 2009

6. There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly - Pam Adams 1972

7. The Barbar Collection - Jean de Brushoff (from 1931; this collection published in 2008)

8. Jim, Who Ran Away From His Nurse And Was Eaten by a Lion 1907

9. Polar Bear, Polar Bear What do you Hear? - Eric Carle 1991

10. What Do People Do All Day? - Richard Scarry 1968

11. The Story of the Little Mole Who Knew that it was None of His Business - Werner Holzworth and Wolf Erlbruch 1989

12. Green Eggs and Ham - Dr Seuss 1960

13. Lost and Found - Oliver Jeffers 2005

14. Adventures of Mrs Pepperpot - Alf Proysen 1956

15. The Gruffalo - Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler 1999

16. Monkey And Me - Emily Gravett 2007

17. Goodnight Moon - Margaret Wise Brown and Clement Hurd 1947

18. Time for Bed - Mem Fox and Jane Dyer 1993

19. Operation Alphabet - Al MacCluish and Luciano Lozanno 2011

20. Hippos Go Beserk - Sandra Boynton 2011

21. The Tiger Who Came To Tea - Judith Kerr 1968

22. Funny Bones - Janet and Allan Ahlberg 1980

23. Elmer - David McKee 1968

24. I Love You Blue Kangaroo - Emma Chichester Clark 1998

25. Little Tim And The Brave Sea Captain - Edward Ardizzone 1936

26. Bread And Jam For Frances - Russell Hoban 1964

27. The Princess And The Pea - Lauren Child 2006

28. The Velveteen Rabbit - Margery Williams and William Nicholson 1922

29. This Is Not My Hat - Jon Klassen 2012

30. Maps - Aleksandra and Daniel Mizielinska 2013

31. A Little History Of The World - E.H. Gombrich 2005

32. Tales From Shakespeare - Charles and Mary Lamb 1807

33. Our Island Story - H.E. Marshall 1905

34. The Diary Of A Young Girl - Anne Frank 1952 (see my review)

35. The Oxford Nursery Rhyme Book - Iona and Julian 1951

36. Tales of Hans Christian Andersen - Translated by Naomi Lewis, illustrated by Joel Stewart 2009

37. The Complete Nonsense of Edward Lear - Collected by Faber 2001

38. The Hutchinson Treasury of Children's Literature - Edited by Alison Sage, Foreward by Quentin Blake 1995

39. Horrible Histories: Rotten Romans - Terry Dreary 1994

40. The Way Things Work - David Macaulay 2004

41. Carrie's War - Nina Bawden 1973 (see my review)

42. Pinocchio - Michael Morpurgo, Emma Chichester Clark 2013

43. Stig Of The Dump - Clive King 1963

44. The Wolves Of Willougby Chase - Joan Aiken 1962 (see my review)

45. The Magician's Nephew - C.S. Lewis 1955

46. Five Children On The Western Front - Kate Saunders 2014

47. Charlotte's Web - E.B. White 1952

48. How To Train Your Dragon - Cressida Cowell 2010

49. South Sea Adventure - Willard Price 1952

50. Goodnight Mister Tom - Michelle Magorian 1981

51. Taffy's Angel - Hilary McKay 2001

52. Charmed Life - Diana Wynne Jones 1978

53. Dead Man's Cove - Lauren St John 2011

54. Noble Conflict - Malorie Blackman 2014

55. The Abominables - Eva Ibbotson

56. Ballet Shoes - Noel Streatfeild 1936 (see my 

57. The Little White Horse - Elizabeth Gouge 1946

58. A Wrinkle in Time - Madeleine L'Engle 1962 (see my review)

59. Skellig - David Almond 1998

60. Harry Potter - J.K. Rowling 1997-2007 (read 1/7)

61. His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman 1995-2000

62. Storm Breaker - Anthony Horowitz 2000 (see my review)

63. Keeper - Mal Peet 2003

64. Watership Down - Richard Adams 1972 (see my review)

65. The Hobbit - J.R.R. Tolkien 1937 (see my review)

66. Emil And The Detectives - Eric Kästner (see my review)

67. James And The Giant Peach - Roald Dahl 1961

68. A Little Princess - Frances Hodgson Burnett 1905

69. Just So Stories - Rudyard Kipling 1902

70. Journey To The Centre Of The Earth - Jules Verne 1864 (see my review)

71. The Doll Party - Ann M Martin and Laura Godwin 2000

72. The Sword In The Stone - T.H. White 1938

73. The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett 1911 (see my review)

74. Heidi - Johanna Spyri 1880 (see my review)

75. Sophie's Adventures - Dick King-Smith 1991

76. Paddington Races Ahead - Michael Bond 2012

77. How The Whale Became - Ted Hughes 1963

78. A Boy And A Bear In A Boat - Dave Shelton 2012

79. Beatrix Potter: The Complete Tales - Beatrix Potter 1902-30

80. The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn - Hergé 1943

81. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll 1865

82. The Phantom Tollbooth - Norton Juster 1970

83. The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz - L. Frank Baum 1900

84. The Little Prince - Antoine de Saint-Exupéry 1943

85. The Winnie-the-Pooh Collection - A.A. Milne 1926

86. Pippi Longstocking - Astrid Lindgren, illustrated Lauren Child 1945 (see my review)

87. Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome 1930  (see my review)

88. Five On A Treasure Island - Enid Blyton 1951

89. Jo Of The Chalet School - Elinor M Brent-Dyer

90. The Railway Children - E. Nesbit 1906

91. The Wind In The Willows - Kenneth Grahame 1908  (see my review)

92. The Story Of Doctor Dolittle - Hugh Lofting 1920

93. The BFG - Roald Dahl 1982

94. Fattypuffs And Thinifers - Andre Maurois 1930 (see my review)

95. Anne Of Green Gables - L.M. Montgomery 1908

96. Little Women - Louisa May Alcott 1868

97. The Greengage Summer - Rumer Godden 1958

98. The Knife Of Never Letting Go - Patrick Ness 2008

99. How I Live Now - Meg Rosoff 2004  (see my review)

100. The Summer Book - Tove Jansson 1972  (see my review)


May 2015 43/100

June 2015 44/100

October 2015 45/100

December 2015 46/100

June 2017 47/100

June 2018 48/100