This week is an exciting week for book lovers as we celebrate World Book Day. On March 1st young people will be coming together to celebrate reading through discussing books, sharing their favourite stories and coming to school dressed as their favourite characters. It is a wonderful occasion to honour all the authors and illustrators out there who work tirelessly to create those meaningful experiences for the readers, worldwide.
In honour of this day, we have been asking our National Office staff what books they loved as children and what was it that made them so special.
The Incredible Journey by Sheila Burnford (Rowena)
'This book is about three pets who travel across Canada to find their masters. It demonstrates sheer grit, persistence and resilience. I loved it as a child because the characters are all very different but accept this, creating a great friendship. It shows loyalty between the three animals but also to their owner.'
Glory Gardens Cricket Club by Bob Cattell (Joe)
'This was a series of books about a village cricket team, and a true underdog story. I read them a lot as a child as one of my main interests was Cricket. I’m not sure what came first, my love for the sport or finding these books, but I went on to play Cricket for England. The books certainly left a long lasting impression on me and made me feel like we could reach our goals.'
Fox and His Friends by Edward Marshall , illustrated by James Marshall (Hannah)
'I loved this book as a child; I think it was the one that I re read the most, probably even when I had outgrown its age range! The main character, Fox, always wanted to spend time with his friends but responsibilities got in the way – whether that was doing jobs or looking after his sister. I think I enjoyed it so much because the relationship he had with his sister reminded me of me and my brother. Fox was always a good friend, a good brother and naughty enough to relate.'
The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis (Sandy)
'The whole Narnia series, and in particular this book, were my favourite reads as a child. I liked them so much because it was pure escapism. They took me to a different place that felt exciting yet safe – even though at times there were some quite frightening baddies. It definitely sat with me more because the main characters were children, like me.'
The Diary of Anne Frank (Jill)
'This was one of my favourite books as child, I think because it is just real. When you read it as a young person, it has a lasting impression of the way the world is. You get drawn into it. Even though it was true and horrific, it also showed the goodness that can be in people.'
The Famous Five by Enid Blyton (Geoff)
'When I was a child I loved reading, and I love series of books so these were great. They are well written, good stories and were fun! You could just lose yourself in them.'
Other childhood classics on the list were Asterix and Obelix, Tintin, Stigg of the Dump, The Witches and Day of the Triffids.