Top Ten Tuesday: Childhood Favorites


Today is a Top Ten Tuesday Freebie. I decided to share my Top Ten Childhood Favorites, the Picture Book version. (Because once I started thinking about chapter books and middle grade, my list suddenly exploded to about 30 titles.) If you grew up in the 70s, this post may bring on nostalgia and a desire to shop for out-of-print children’s books on eBay. I still have my original copies of a couple of these books, but I was rough on books as a child: I loved them literally to death. So my original copies aren’t exactly readable anymore.

In researching this post, I discovered that several of my favorites were published by Parents Magazine Press, which offered a mail-order book subscription service for the titles it published for young readers. I don’t know how long my mother had a subscription, but long enough to receive a lot of really great books that I still remember 35+ years later. Thanks, Mom!


Mog the Forgetful Cat, written and illustrated by Judith Kerr


Sylvester and the Magic Pebble, written and illustrated by William Steig

how fletcher was hatched

How Fletcher Was Hatched!, written and illustrated by Wende and Harry Devlin

bedtime for frances

Bedtime for Frances, written by Russell Hoban and illustrated by Garth Williams

harvey's hideout

Harvey’s Hideout, written by Russell Hoban and illustrated by Lillian Hoban


The Terrible Thing That Happened At Our House, written by Marge Blaine and illustrated by John Warner

miss suzy

Miss Suzy, written by Miriam Young and illustrated by Arnold Lobel

tell me a mitzi

Tell Me a Mitzi, written by Lore Segal and illustrated by Harriet Pincus


 Alexander, written by Harold Littledale and illustrated by Tom Vroman

(See photos of several illustrations from Alexander at The Art of the Children’s Picture Book).

here comes tagalong

Here Comes Tagalong, written by Anne Mallett and illustrated by Steve Kellogg

10 responses to “Top Ten Tuesday: Childhood Favorites”

  1. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate this post! I was in search of some new, good picture books, and I am going to bring this list right to the library. 🙂

    • You can still find some of these books in print, though if your library is anything like mine, the older picture books don’t really stick around unless they won a Caldecott. I could easily have put three or four more Russell Hoban titles on the list–I was crazy about all the Frances books, and The Little Brute Family is another great favorite that I continue to quote fairly regularly.

  2. I’m so glad that these books contributed to your developing such a love of reading. I still remember sending in the postcard (when I was pregnant with you) so that I would start your picture-book library before you were even born. I cannot remember being read to a single time when I was growing up, but for whatever reason, I was sure that we would be reading to you!

    • That’s actually kind of amazing that you weren’t read to, yet you know you wanted to read aloud to me. I still have a few of these books on my shelf upstairs! (Including a VERY loved copy of Mog–complete with many scribbles as I apparently decided to add my “words” and illustrations to the book–and also with some pages cut out!)

  3. I definitely feel like the Sylvester book and the Frances books shaped my psyche somehow. And Mitzi!! I remember reading the Mitzi book to Martha over and over, obsessed with Mitzi getting Jacob ready to go out and Jacob yelling Come back! at the parade…. I am very much looking forward to when Owen lets me read more than the 15 or so books that are currently stuck on his roster.

    • Do you follow Unleashing Readers? ( Kellee and Ricki write about a lot of other books too, but I really enjoy their posts about reading with their infant sons. Both wrote posts this past week about their favorite books so far to read with their children. I’ll send you the link… I remember obsessing over the illustrations in Mitzi! That book happens to still be in print, and I am the proud owner of a brand-new copy. Think I might read it to T this week. We’re a little thin on picture books from the library right now, and he is definitely wanting to read longer, more involved PBs, which I think Mitzi is. What are Owen’s 15 or so books? Blog post please!!!

    • I just recently discovered that there is a whole SERIES of books about Mog!! I only knew the one book as a child reader. I’m going to be requesting the rest through interlibrary loan this summer!

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