Thursday, April 15, 2010

Flashback Fridays: Those Memorable Books We Grew Up With


We're starting a new weekly segment at GotYA called Flashback Fridays. We'll be talking about everything from books to movies to first loves to favorite vacations as well as relating them to the YA literature scene. We'll be "flashbacking" on our own blogs, but most of all, we want YOUR participation as well. So, mark Fridays as your blog days to gaze into the past and smile!

The first ever Flashback Friday is on the books we grew up with. The ones that have stuck with us after all these years for both good and bad reasons. Think of the books your favorites and blog about them!

Here's the links to our personal Flashback Fridays: Krista, Jamie, Debra, Veronica


Are You There God It’s Me Margaret, Superfudge, Ramona, the Pest, The Babysitters Club, Sweet Valley Twins and Sweet Valley High, Harry Potter, & Fear Street. Hearing these titles can make us salivate on cue like Pavlov’s dogs. Why? Because us they take us back to the excitement of devouring books and before the pressures of life’s responsibilities robbed us of our coveted reading time. But not only that, they were our first forays into Young Adult literature.

So, sit back as we take a stroll down memory lane with some books that may or may not be familiar...

Ah, The Baby-sitters Club…there was someone for everyone: the jock, the artist, the California girl, the sensitive one, the dancer, the writer, and the hip NYC fashionista. What about sporting
Team Logan or Team Alan shirts back in the day? You know for Logan Bruno, Mary Anne Speir’s Southern hottie with the drawl, and Alan Gray, the immature pest who couldn’t man up and tell Kristy his feelings? Okay, maybe not.

The Babysitters Club is being resurrected, and no, not like Claudia and the Art School Zombie Crush! Like a lot of us who are growing older, they’re being dusted off and revamped. Here’s some information about the relaunch.

Want an absolutely HILARIOUS recap of your favorite BSC books? Then you must, and I do mean must, check out BSC Headquarters. Tiff, a 20 something gal, is blogging as she rereads through her old BSC books. I spent way too many hours spitting coke zero on my computer screen at some of the recaps.

If you couldn’t get enough of Claudia’s crazy digs, then check out What Claudia Wore. It not only breaks down Claudia’s fashion forward, er, perhaps worst dressed moments, but it recaps the other characters as well along with a healthy dose of witty repartee.

You might have been under a rock if you never read one of the Ramona Quimby books growing up. If you’re feeling especially nostalgic, you can check out the upcoming Ramona movie, Beezus and Ramona, with Selena Gomez, Joey King, and my own personal favorite, John Corbett. It’s premiering in July. And how cool is it that author Beverly Cleary began penning novels in the 1950’s, and she is now 94 years old! Go Beverly!

How many of us gleefully scared the pants off our preteen selves by reading the Fear Street books? RL Stine gave us a diverse variety of characters and settings, but the creepy factor rang true in all the books.

Good girl, bad girl. Good sister, spawn of Satan sister. Before we were old enough to realize how a lot of soap operas delved into the cliche evil twin brother or sister, it was happening prime time in the Sweet Valley Twins and then Sweet Valley High books. Okay, maybe Jessica wasn’t evil. But come on, she was a megabitch, right? Most of us felt sorry for poor Elizabeth at one time or another, but it didn't keep us away from seeing just what antics Jessica would get into next.

And how bout' those classics? Anne of Green Gables with the daring and precocious "Anne with an E", her wonderful Gilbert, her bosom friend Diana, and the stern, but loving Marilla.

And the Little House on the Prairie series with Laura, her sisters Mary and Carrie, along with Pa and Ma told the story of a family overcoming the odds on the harsh, untamed frontier with love and laughter.

Now it's your turn to tell us about your favorite books from childhood. Leave us a comment with your link.


Bee said...

Yay, for the old school books!
The BSC, Sweet Valley, Nancy Drew, Fear Street, Famous Five, Heidi were all so much a part of my growing up years. Inspired me to read..inspired me to write *bows to books*

PS. The Cheater was the first Fear Street book I read and seeing that cover up there gave me that mushy-creeped out feeling. LOL

TamiJean said...

I also grew up with the Black Stallion and Thoroughbred series (I wonder where my love of horses came from?) and the Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia Wrede (which I still own and read on a yearly basis).

The Babysitter's Club was another staple for me (as was the Little House on the Prairie, but BSC had my heart and soul for a while).

From a non-series standpoint, I also loved The Secret Garden, Heidi, and A Little Princess.

(P.S. is there a way to open up the comments to Name/URL instead of requiring an account on various sites?)

houndrat said...

YAY for another Black Stallion series fan--I had all of them! :D


Krista Ashe said...

Bee, I loved the Nancy Drew books. My cousin has a whole set of the hardback ones I'm desperate to break into.

And TamiJean, I love, love the Secret Garden and Heidi. I was actually older when I read them. And yes, we'll look into changing the commenting format!

CoachMT said...

I couldn't get enough Encyclopedia Brown when I was a kid, that's the first I remember actively seeking out to read.

Anonymous said...

ZOMG, every one of these is a GIANT FLASHBACK.

Hm. --the Taffy Sinclair/Fabulous Five books come to mind. Or The Saddle Club. The Great Mom Swap. Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry. A Wrinkle In Time. (and, well, anything at all Madeline L'Engle. I think I emptied an entire library shelf when I discovered her.)

Ahh, great post. :)

Marquita Hockaday said...

OOh- this is such a cool topic. I was REALLY into the Babysitters club when I was younger, I mean, REALLY! So much so that I bought all of the spin-offs, like the How To be a Babysitter books, and the one that was Dawn's diary (and her best friend Summer!). I really liked Claudia a lot, she was the best- and I was the first person in line to buy the special double books- you know the thick ones that were specials, like the Babysitter Club goes to a Snow Cottage for a week! Anyway, I was also really into Sweet Valley High and then my dark side emerged. I became a fan of R.L Stine's Goosebumps series and then the Fear Street books. I loved scaring myself! I really liked Number the Stars by Lois Lowry and the Fudge series. I can go on and on...but I don't want to take up all of your space.

susiej said...

I loved The Little House books. I so wanted to be Laura. Funny that I never realized I was reading non-fiction. I also loved the Black Stallion series. And all de Henry's horse books too. I was into Dumas for a while- really thought D'Artangan was hot. Had my heart broken with Queen Margot. Then, I read my first adult book-LOTR and I've been fantasy fan ever since.

Anonymous said...

I just watched the trailer for Ramona and Beezus and literally squealed at the ending - with Ramona falling through the plaster and the little boys giggling at her underpants. BEST PART OF THE SERIES. *happy dances* I cannot wait to see that.

Annie McElfresh said...

I loooooooooooooved Anne of Greene Gables!! :D

Elizabeth Briggs said...

This sounds like fun. Here's my post:

Rachele Alpine said...

Uhm...did you guys raid my bookshelves? I still have copies of all of those books! I took my "Fear Street" books to school and my students all read them now. They love them (along with Christopher Poke).

NovelEagle said...

And the best of all books for young women - Betty Smith's "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn" history with love.

masciajames said...

For myself, I have to say my favorites as a kid were the Winnie-The Pooh books. Hell, I still think their at the top of my list as all time greats.

masciajames said...

You can add Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing too.

Jamie said...

I read the "Ramona" and "Little House" books as well as "Are You There God..?" and "Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing." I liked Superfudge" as well. And the "Bobbsey Twins" books. I only read one or two of the "Sweet Valley High" books , but I really loved reading the "Sweet Dreams" romance series. I recently found a few of the "Sweet Dreams" books at a Salvation Army store.

Jessica said...


I think I've read a lot of the books that have been mentioned, but I owned and read EVERY "Animorphs" book.

I also didn't see anyone mention the "Boxcar Children." And Claudia was totally my favorite in the BSC.