Tuesday

Ramblings: Buried in a Book for Years

A quick apology for my latest lack of posts. I'm back to the revision...
 
After reading Ruby's post on how Harry Potter has been more than half her life, I got me thinking about what books I've been reading since I had the day-dreams of becoming an author. It all goes back to Enid Blyton and Jacqueline Wilson, my first memory of finishing a book being Enid Blyton's 'The Naughtiest Girl in the School'. Along with constantly reading "The Secret Garden" throughout this time.
 
 
 
I can't really remember a time when I haven't visited my local library. It's a habit to walk through the doors on my way home from school, and to spend time after time hunting down my missing library card. Also, you will know if you have been reading this blog for a while that it's not unlikely for me to come home with a pile of books under my arm from the odd school book giveaway, or yet another trip to the library. My love of books is also there when I look back on past Christmas' and realise I've always had books from gifts. Jacqueline Wilson books have been a must-have for three years, and before that I hunted down whatever I could find.
 

The first books that really made an impact on me were 'The Secret Garden' by Frances Hodgson Burnett and 'The Naughtiest Girl in the School' by Enid Blyton. I've only just realised that these are both about spoilt, only-children and are sent away. Mary Lennox, in The Secret Garden to a moor in England when her parents die after a cholera epidemic and Elizabeth Allen to Whyteleafe School. I love how different they both are, as I still pick them up for the occasional read now. They were both able to teach me valuable life-lessons at such a young age and I dreamt of discovering a secret garden, or going to the type of school that Whyteleafe is. For those of you who have never experienced Enid Blyton's writing - I don't believe you can ever be truly too old for it. It captures such a early 1900's vibe but is also so realistic and bright. It makes me want to be at the school: where the children hold weekly meetings, have a huge variety of after school activities including horse-riding and getting to keep your own pet along with going down into the village with a friend to spend you £2 pocket money. It's just beautifully crafted, and I was happy to grow up with such imaginative book.
 
Primary school, between the ages of 7-11 was awful. Never did I really 'fit-in' or have a best friend, I just made my way through the school, trying my best. I left the school with high-results, and was so proud that I could prove the people wrong. There were times when I thought, "This is it, I've finally found some friends" but, in all honesty, I was always trying to fit-in. I was never just myself and seeing what happened. Having Whyteleafe school let me imagine somewhere that allows everyone to be accepted. There's music, sports, the arts - mention it at the Weekly Meeting and they'd throw it into the mix. I remember finishing the first book in the series, which I have only ever reached number seven of, and feeling so over-joyed because It was over one-hundred pages long and I'd read it. I texted my dad, told my mum, It was a great feeling.
 
As for 'The Secret Garden', I was given it by an old neighbour I haven't seen in years but can still remember getting it. Inside, there were rose-petals decorating the front page, and there are still a few remaining between the few pages so many years on. I passed it down to my younger sister, but I think the fact that there was magic in this book made it my Harry Potter. I never sat down to read them as a child, as I had such an over-reactive imagination I would probably never sleep again but, I've conquered two of them. I've never found the time to read the rest but, who knows, maybe sometime in the future. 'The Secret Garden' gave me a huge sense of imagination as one of my first books.  I can remember constantly reading the first page and re-introducing myself to Mary. It was also filled with illustrations that brought the story to life, all detailed and elegant. The thing was, on one of the first few pages I remember falling in love with the pink dress she wore, contemplated by frills on the shoulder. Younger me, I think we can safely assume I'm never going to be good at fashion!
 
So, this is basically a post showing what books I've grown up with and the impact it's had on my life. I mean, at the age of eleven I made plans to open up a boarding school, just like Whyteleafe when I was older(and clearly, wiser). That is still there, in a few ways, like wanting to be a teacher if all else fails.

14 comments:

  1. This post made me smile! :) Books are a huge part of my life - I might do a post like yours and Ruby's because I just have so much to say! I don't have a clue where I'd be without reading. Between the ages of 8-11, I was obsessed with Jacqueline Wilson. My taste in that genre lead me to Cathy Cassidy which eventually lead to trying different genres.

    Harry Potter is a huge part of my life too! Everything about the world is PERFECT and I love to read the books for comfort reads. The Secret Garden is amazing too, and I LOVE Enid Blyton! Like you said, you can never be too old for her writing.

    Thanks for sharing, Sophie! Amazing post! <3

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    1. So happy I made you smile! Thank you so much! I'd love to read your post, and I'll be definitely tweeting you later about Jacqueline Wilson. I've also experimented with Cathy Cassidy's writing and loved the vibe of it.

      Thank you, once again! <3

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  2. Fab post, Sophie! I LOVE Enid nlyton and Jacqueline Wilson. So many of their books are still on my shelves and sometimes I read one just to remind myself how happy I was to read when I was younger :) I didn't have a great time at school either, in Year 7 I remember I had only one friend :( Then things get better but books are always there for you!

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    1. Thank you so much! I feel like I have to keep them - they were a part of my child-hood. I have a small group of friends, but only really have one best friend. I like it that way, though! But books will always be my comfort. x

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  3. Such a nice post Sophie! Jacqueline Wilson made a big impact on my life and I would read her stories for years - I still do! I know how you feel because primary school at times was very rough for me and I never fit in. I actually remember that when I was in year three I moved schools and I had no friends, I was constantly bullied. But during class my teacher would read us The Naughtiest Girl in School and while I don't remember it now, I quite liked it. Books are great friends and still a comfort to me now.

    I haven't read HP yet but I'm planning to as Ruby challenged me to in her latest post. Haha xxx

    - Sunny @ A Sunny Spot Blog

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    1. Thanks, Sunny! I always pick up my Jacqueline Wilson books - especially for comfort. They bring me back to the time where I had no worries, or one's much smaller than the now. I'm glad books have helped you, there's no need for others to bully you. I don't know how they could - you're lovely!

      Ruby challenged me too! Snap!

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    2. Naww thank you Sophie, your so sweet :) Books are the best comforters!

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  4. This is an amazing post Sophie! It makes me want to smile and cry at the same time (a good thing!) I can relate to so many things there. The library was one of my favourite places to spend time when I was little. My parents would take me and I could spend ages looking through books and choose what I wanted. Some of the first books I read we're the Rainbow fairy books! They were small, but when I once read two in a day, I felt so proud! I also read The Horrible Histories books, and they are still my guilty pleasure to this day! War Horse by Michael Morpurgo was the first book to make me cry and I still occasionally pick up his books. I never liked Enid Blyton books but I remember getting The Secret Garden as a present from my neighbour, as well. It is a beautiful copy that has beautiful pictures! Then came Harry Potter which was what really started my love for reading and my daily fangirling. Without Harry Potter, I probably wouldn't have my blog...

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    1. Thank you so much, Rita! Glad I'm not making you cry in a bad way but I completely understand how you feel! I remember the Rainbow Fairies books. I wanted to be the girls!

      I LOVED War Horse! It was my first Michael Morpurgo book and was one of the first 'teen' books to crush me. I loved it.

      Fandoms have shaped so much. When you get a book you love, you want to talk about it. That's where my blog really began too!(With The Hunger Games)

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  5. Books are a huge part of my life too, I'm proud to say. Really good post, I enjoyed reading it!

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    1. Thank you, Amber! Books for life!

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  6. Aww, love this post, Sophie. I have fond memories of reading books as a child like Girl, Missing by Sophie McKenzie and The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman. Such good memories!i think people who don't read miss out a lot. Reading a book creates a memory in your life. And anytime I pick up Girl, Missing I remember lots of great times when I was a little kid reading it! :')

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    1. Thank you, Jack! I know, I love all of my old memories and how they've shaped my life. Same here, like crying for ages after finishing an old Jacqueline Wilson book. My parents thought something awful had happened!

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  7. I read a couple Enid Blyton books when I was younger too. But I mostly grew up reading the Harry Potter books like Ruby. ;) As well as the Narnia books, the Chestnut Hill books and practically all of Jacqueline Wilson's books! ^.~

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Thank you so much for taking the time to read - and comment on - this blog post! I read and reply to every comment, so feel free to ask any questions and I'll answer!

See you soon!

Sophie Louise