On Abebook’s 50 books every 11-year-old should read

We have a folder at the bookshop where we put lists of books – prizewinners, shortlists, cut out of the weekend paper reviews, and so on. A while ago, on Abebooks, I found a list of their 50 books every 11 year old should read, and I put it in this folder. A few days ago, I was cleaning out the folder, getting rid of last years prize-winners lists, when I stumbled across this Abebooks list again. I thought it would be interesting to compare that list with the 1001 Children’s Books I Must Read Before I Grow Up.
Now, obviously, the Abebooks list is missing lots of the 1001 Children’s Books I Must Read Before I Grow Up books, because it was only made up of 50 books, but surprisingly there are quite a few books on that list missing from my list of 1001 books. Some books are too new to be part of 1001 books (1001 Children’s Books You Must Read Before You Grow Up was published in 2006), like the Percy Jackson series. Some books are by authors that have other books included on the list, like Roald Dahl or E. Nesbit (which begs the discussion of which of these author’s books are the ‘must read’ books, the best of their work – obviously opinions are divided).But for some books there is absolutely no excuses for why they are not included in 1001 Children’s Books You Must Read Before You Grow Up, like Gerald Durrell’s The Talking Parcel. I read this book when I was about 10 or 11, reread it, absolutely loved it, and have been searching for it ever since (the original version belonged to my grandparents, and has since disappeared). It is out of print, and all the second hand copies that I have found have been in the triple digits in price, and therefor a little bit out of my book price range. This is a book that, in my opinion, should be on the 1001 Children’s Books list.
         I have included Abebook’s list below, and have put an asterisk next to the books that are not included in 1001 Children’s Books You Must Read Before You Grow Up. Where Abebooks says ‘series’, I have not asterisked it if the first book in the series is included in 1001 Children’s Books You Must Read Before You Grow Up. What are your thoughts on this list? Are there any crucial books your 11-year-old self loved that they missed?
  • ‘Swallows and Amazons’ by Arthur Ransome
  • The Eagle of the Ninth’ by Rosemary Sutcliff
  • ‘The Hobbit’ by J. R. R. Tolkien
  • ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ by Lewis Carroll
  • ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ by Roald Dahl
  • ‘The Secret Garden’ by Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • ‘The Talking Parcel’ by Gerald Durrell
  • ‘War Horse’ by Michael Murpurgo
  • ‘The Beasts of Clawstone Castle’ by Eva Ibbotson *
  • ‘Danny the Champion of the World’ by Roald Dahl *
  • ‘Charlotte’s Webb’ by E. B. White
  • Artemis Fowl Series by Eoin Colfer
  • ‘The City of Ember’ by Jeanne DuPrau *
  • Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilde
  • ‘Coraline’ by Neil Gaiman *
  • ‘The Machine Gunners’ by Robert Westall
  • ‘Because of Winn-Dixie’ by Kate DiCamillo
  • ‘Emil and the Detectives’ by Erich Kastner
  • ‘Inkheart’ by Cornelia Funke
  • ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ by Madeleine L’Engle
  • The Wind in the Willows‘ by Kenneth Grahame
  • ‘The Adventures of Tom Sawyer’ by Mark Twain
  • Tom’s Midnight Garden‘ by Philippa Pearce
  • ‘The Book Thief’ by Marcus Zusak *
  • ‘The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents’ by Terry Pratchett *
  • Magic Series by Edward Eager
  • ‘Anne of Green Gables’ by L. M. Montgomery
  • ‘The Borrowers’ by Mary Norton
  • ‘Boy’ by Roald Dahl  *
  • ‘Holes’ by Louis Sachar
  • ‘The Graveyard Book’ by Neil Gaiman
  • ‘The Phoenix and the Carpet’ by E. Nesbit *
  • ‘The Lantern Bearers’ by Rosemary Sutcliff*
  • ‘The Silver Sword’ by Ian Serraillier
  • ‘Treasure Island’ by Robert Louis Stevenson
  • ‘The Bridge to Terabithia’ by Katherine Paterson
  • The Dark is Rising Series by Susan Cooper
  • ‘The Mozart Question’ by Michael Morpurgo *
  • The Pendragon Adventures Series by D. J. MacHale *
  • ‘Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief’ by Rick Riordan *
  • ‘Silverwing’ by Kenneth Oppel *
  • The Spiderwick Chronicles by Tony DiTerlizzi & Holly Black
  • ‘Stig of the Dump’ by Clive King
  • ‘The Weirdstone of Brisingamen’ by Alan Garner *
  • The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis
  • His Dark Materials Trilogy by Philip Pullman
  • Harry Potter Series by J. K. Rowling
  • Leven Thumps Series by Obert Skye *
  • A Series of Unfortunate Events Series by Lemony Snicket

One comment

  1. Pingback: On meeting your book heroes. « 1001 Children's Books

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