Making the Cut

Last week I gave my honest, if not entirely kind, opinion of The Rise and Fall of Mount Majestic by Jennifer Trafton. I shared the post on my Facebook page and a friend made the comment that she was "incredibly selective" about the books that made it on her "re-read" list. Well, that caused my wheels to start turning, and before I knew what was happening, I was creating a mental list of "re-readable" books from my childhood.

You already known my affinity for the Anne of Green Gables series, as well as the Little House stories, but I thought that there might be those among you who would be interested to know what other books made my re-read list. To keep it short, I've stuck with chapter books, because if we went with picture books, we'd be here all day!


The Boxcar Children: Book 1 by Gertrude Chandler Warner
This book holds a special spot on the list because I still have my original copy, purchased at a Memphis bookstore just prior to my brother's graduation from medical school. My mother, a wise woman, thought that a four hour ceremony might be a bit much, especially for an eight year old, so she allowed me to select a new book to help pass the time. This was my choice, and I've loved it ever since.


Follow That Bus! by Pat Hutchins
I was so sorry to discover that the only way you can add this to your book collection is if you're willing to buy it used. I lost track of the number of times I read through this story, but I remember laughing hysterically as I followed the adventure of the absent-minded Miss Beaver, her third-grade class, and a couple of unlucky bank robbers. Buy it used - it's worth it.


The Search for Delicious by Natalie Babbitt
Easily one of my favorite books, the story of young Gaylen and his quest to discover the true definition of "Delicious" never ceases to entertain. But, in the words of LeVar Burton (of Star Trek and Reading Rainbow fame), don't take MY word for it! It also won over FishMama, if you'd like to see what a mother of six thought about this book.

{4 & 5}

My copies of these books are completely worn out from all the re-reading that they have seen. I love the poems in the Chocolate Factory (specifically about TV watching), but for general hilarity, I can't get enough of the grandparents antics in the Great Glass Elevator. Dahl's skill as a writer shines through in both of these stories, and I never grow tired of them. In fact, they are some of the few books that have remained on my adult "re-reading" list, year after year.


The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
I adore the clever word usage that makes up the plot line of this story. The whole idea of reaching the Island of Conclusions by jumping? Brilliant. If you want to find a book that will captivate while instructing, then this would be on my list. Well how about that - it IS on my list. NEXT! 

The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin
I've mentioned this story several times on the blog, but it's worth telling again. My sister gave me this book for my 14th birthday, and I was quite sure that I was way.too.old to be receiving a children's story. Oh, how wrong I was! In fact, I still read this book on a yearly basis. The characters are well thought out, the plot leaves nothing to be desired, there's humor and mystery and patriotism - all in all, a well written book and certainly worthy of re-reading.

In Grandma's Attic (Grandma's Attic Series) by Arleta Richardson
I don't know how my mom found out about this series, but it has been a favorite re-read of mine since I was about eight years old. There are ten books in the series, and while I enjoyed them all, I tended to re-read the last six more than the first four. While they were written for younger girls, I read and enjoyed them well into high school and have read them through a couple of times as an adult.

What books would make YOUR re-read list?


  1. Oooooh apart from the roald dahl ones, little house and green gables, i havent read any of those but i have voraciously reading 9 and 7 year olds who will love getting their hands on new books! my faves are little women, the borrowers, the family from number one end street, the prisoner of zenda, a zoo in my luggage by gerald durrell and the biggles series. i'm sure the list would be endless!!

  2. The majority of books that I am willing to re-read are mainly young adult books that stand the test of time. I am not sure why, maybe it is because books made such an impact on my life as an awkward teenager. I think maybe I will do a blog post about my favorite YA books...hmmm...

    Anyway, moving on.

    I can re-read any Roald Dahl book - he is one of my favorite authors, even as an adult.

    I also LOVE the Westing Game by Ellen Raskin. I have probably read that book at least 20 times.

    Oh, and I can't get enough of "Our Town". I know that it is a screenplay and not a book but whenever I need some inspiration, I go to my tattered copy.

  3. Thanks for the list! I don't have personal experience with ANY of them, except Delicious, which apparently our library no longer owns. We may have to buy that one. All the others are now on hold. We're planning for the empty library shelves of summertime....

  4. So MANY good chapter books how can you choose?
    Bronze Bow- or any by Elizabeth George Spears for that matter Mrs.Frisby and the Rats of Nymh
    Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry
    Caddie Woodlawn
    The Betsy and Tacie Series
    all of Elizabeth Enright's Melandy quartet books
    The Wheel on the School
    and, and, and...sigh. reread 'em every year as do my kids!

  5. I Love "The Ordinary Princess" by M.M. Kaye! I think it should be the next Disney movie. :) Also I used to laugh and laugh while reading Gordon Korman books especially "No Coins Please" and "I Want to Go Home!" Amy Long

  6. I loved The Phantom Tollbooth! I'm not that picky about rereading things I've enjoyed though--although it is always a question of time. Harry Potter gets a periodic reread every few years, although it wasn't from my childhood exactly. Other recent rereads or considered rereads are Frenchman's Creek, Lolita, The Fat Woman Next Door is Pregnant, and Far from the Madding Crowd. Plus I finally made myself read all of Pride and Prejudice for the first time (after seeing the series about forty times and making it a quarter of the way through the book about four times)

  7. Oh, A Little Princess also gets a periodic reread.

  8. I love a bunch of the ones mentioned, but I'll also add:
    The Roman Mysteries by Caroline Lawrence (the first book is called The Thieves of Ostia)
    Sammy Keyes mystery books by Wendelin Van Draanen
    Beany Malone series and Katie Rose series by Lenora Mattingly Weber (these are YA books I loved as a teenager, so they still mean a lot to me -- as Karen was saying : ) )
    A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith

  9. So, Carrie, my daughter Cami loves The Phantom Tollbooth. I never read it as a child - I think I may have read it with her the first time, and she'll be tickled to see it on your list. There are a few here that we haven't read, and we'll be checking them out.

    Thank you! :-)

  10. Oh... and I didn't tell my re-readables. As far as Roald Dahl, my favorite is Danny, the Champion of the World. Another favorite is The Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett.

  11. I LOVED the Boxcar Children books!! I had totally forgotten about them!

  12. A Wrinkle in Time. That book made such an impact on me. I think about it over and over and ....oh wait....over again.

    Thanks for the incredible re-reading list.


  13. Thanks for the great list! Z is a voracious reader & I'm always looking for good recommendations from trusted sources. I had forgotten abt some of these! Thx! Come back to AK soon!!!

  14. Wow - lots of great suggestions!

    Sophie - I loved The Borrowers as well, though the ending of the first book always made me a little sad.

    Karen - Glad to know someone else likes the Westing Game as much as I do!

    FishMama - Ooh, I hope you try some of these on your kids! Let me know what they think!

    Beka - This is only a portion, but I had to start (and stop) somewhere! ;-)

    Amy - Going to have to look those up. I've never heard of them!

    Emily - The Little Princess was another favorite as a child, but I haven't read it in years. I should pick it up again. For the record, I've read all the Austen books, but "Mansfield Park" is my favorite.

    Becky, Kaysi, and Karianne - thanks for chiming in! Lots of good recommendations from you guys!

    Natalie - I wish AK was a bit closer - we loved our time there!

    Happy Reading, everyone!


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