Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Top 50 'Must-Read' Books: How Many Have You Read?

In celebration of World Book Day the results of a survey have been published, revealing which books children should have read by the time they are 16.

Here is the list. I've italicised the ones that I've read, which I was ashamed to discover isn't actually that many! Although there's a few that I'm sure I must have read at nursery/primary school and forgotten all about.
  
1. Charlie and The Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl 
2. Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll 
3. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe – CS Lewis 
4. Winnie The Pooh – AA Milne 
5. Black Beauty – Anna Sewell 
6. James and The Giant Peach – Roald Dahl
7. The BFG – Roald Dahl
8. A Bear Called Paddington – Michael Bond 
9. Treasure Island – Robert Louis Stevenson
10. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn – Mark Twain
11. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone – J.K. Rowling 
12. Matilda – Roald Dahl
13. The Railway Children – E Nesbit
14. Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
15. Five on a Treasure Island – Enid Blyton 
16. The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame 
17. The Very Hungry Caterpillar – Eric Carle 
18. The Jungle Book – Rudyard Kipling
21. Watership Down – Richard Adams
19. Charlotte's Web – EB White 
20. The Tale of Peter Rabbit – Beatrix Potter
22. The Hobbit – JRR Tolken
23. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – JK Rowling
24. Lord of the Flies – William Golding 
25. The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole, aged 13 ¾ – Sue Townsend
26. Great Expectations – Charles Dickens 
27. The Cat in the Hat – Dr Seuss 
28. The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson–Burnett
29. The Diary of a Young Girl – Anne Frank
30. The Twits – Roald Dahl 
31. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz – L Frank Baum
32. The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas – John Boyne
33. Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
34. The Tiger Who Came to Tea – Judith Kerr 
35. Green Eggs and Ham – Dr Seuss
36. The Day of the Triffids – John Wyndham
37. Bambi – Felix Selten
38. Tom's Midnight Garden – Phillipa Pearce
39. Little House on the Prairie – Laura Ingalls Wilder
40. Funny Bones – Janet and Allan Ahlberg
41. Where The Wild Things Are – Maurice Sendak
42. Carrie's War – Nina Bawden
43. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time – Mark Haddon
44. The Magician's Nephew – CS Lewis
45. Northern Lights – Philip Pullman
46. The Story of Doctor Dolittle – Hugh Lofting
47. The Story of Tracy Beaker – Jacqueline Wilson 
48. The Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins
49. Curious George – HA Ray
50. Each Peach Pear Plum – Janet and Allan Ahlberg

That's 20/50 books that I've read. I clearly have some catching up to do - didn't even know that Bambi was a book until I saw this list! I'm in the minority who just didn't 'get' the hype over the Roald Dahl books - I still don't - but I'm not surprised that there are so many of his books on the list. I'm also not keen at all on Dickens, but for some reason it is instilled in us that to be well read you must be familiar with his work. Give me a Thomas Hardy novel instead any day.

My personal top five, including some on this list, would be
1) The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson–Burnett
2) Peter Pan by J.M Barrie
3) Five on a Treasure Island by Enid Blyton (ALL of her books should be on the list in my opinion!)
4) The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter (again all of her work deserves must-read status!)
5) The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S Lewis

As a bonus, here are the top 20 children's characters according to the survey:

1. Paddington Bear
2. Winnie the Pooh
3. The Hungry Caterpillar
4. Postman Pat
5. Thomas the Tank Engine
6. The Gruffalo
7. Harry Potter
8. Cinderella
9. Mr Men
10. Peter Rabbit
11. Charlie from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
12. Peter Pan
13. The BFG
14. Alice in Wonderland
15. Noddy
16. Willy Wonka
17. Matilda
18. Mog the Cat
19. Toad from Wind in the Willows
20. Pinocchio

I agree with every single one of the characters on this list, and as much as I love Peter Pan and Peter Rabbit, there's no way that I could displace Paddington and Winnie from the top of the list!

Over to you! How many of the books have you read? What books would you add to the list? And who are your favourite children's characters?

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