3 children’s books I read in the 80’s

While other parents tried to make their kids read at least one book, my mum was constantly nudging me to stop reading and get outside.

I loved both but outside there were difficult things to handle: our aggressive rooster, the busybody neighbour, the village alcos. So I always preferred the safety of the books from a very young age. To my mother’s credit, even as a factory worker, she always bought me plenty of books I could enjoy. I don’t recall her telling me nighttime stories, but if I wanted to read, I had the opportunity. So I did. A lot.

The book that taught me to emphasize with animals

Telling stories with animals around the house and the farm, this book had probably influenced me loving animals.

I like the illustration style as well, realistic but super cute, and since we lived in a small village, a lot of these animals were all around me. I remember though that our rooster was much less friendly that the one in the book!

Vladimir Suteyev: Happy Tales

Learning grammar through stories

The original title uses the impactful tool of alliterations so with free (and simplified) translation, let’s call these two books “Gedeon the Gander” and “Laundry of Lena”. It had funny stories, simple pictures and highlighted a specific grammar rule in each of the stories, making it easier to learn spelling.

The book that made me want to write

We all have that book that set us off on this journey of not just absorbing but also creating words. For me, this was The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole aged 13 3/4. It was so easy to relate to him even though life in the UK was very different to life in Hungary. It made me want to start a journal myself, and writing a journal slowly but surely led to creating stories.

Delta the AI also urges children to read much and early:

You know what they say, “early readers get the bookworm!” It’s true, if you start reading at a young age, you’ll have a lifelong love affair with books. And let’s be honest, that’s a pretty sweet deal. Not only will you always have a source of entertainment, but you’ll also have an excuse to ignore all your adult responsibilities and disappear into a world of fantasy and adventure. Plus, you’ll have a killer vocabulary, which is sure to impress all the other kids on the playground. So, if you want to be the coolest cat in town, start reading now!

What were your early books that you recall?

This post is part of the A to Z blogging challenge of April 2023.
Topic of this year is “The AI, the dog and the witchling”, real and fictional stories partially written/inspired by Artificial Intelligence, featuring Mia and Missy.
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I asked ChatGPT to write a humorous paragraph on the advantage of children reading. Not sure it delivered to my expectations, but it definitely tried.

17 thoughts on “3 children’s books I read in the 80’s

  1. That AI is an unexpectedly good writer. I loved the Billabong series when I was a child. It’s about a girl growing up on a cattle station in Victoria, Australia. Starting in the early 1900s it follows the life of Norah to through to adulthood, marriage and motherhood with a background of WW1, the twenties and beyond. I so wanted to be Norah! I have just bought a book about the author, Mary Grant Bruce which I’m looking forward to reading.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. One of my favorites was “Songberd’s Grove” by Anne Barrett. It’s set just after WW 2 in England. And involves a bully and how the neighborhood kids stand against him. It sounds serious, but it was also humorous. There were drawings by N. M. Bodecker, who also illustrated the “Half Magic” series. Last year for A to Z I went through 1950 in my family and also featured one of the childhood picture books I was read during those years.


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  3. Fun post – I always enjoy hearing what childhood books made an impression. And thanks to the AI I learned a new expression today that makes me laugh – “the early reader gets the bookworm” strikes me as hilarious, and, of course, very often true.


  4. I agree. Books are the best escape (esp. for introverted kids like me). I still prefer books to people and of course the responsibilities that come with being an adult. Books can be your best friends when you don’t have any.
    As a kid, I read several Indian comic books. There were also Gulliver’s Travels, Little Red Riding Hood, Adventurous stories for little girls, Nancy Drew, Famous Five…the list is endless. 🙂

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  5. Winnie the Pooh, and a beautifully illustrated fairy tale about a girl who flew away on a swan, Child of the Air, I think it was called. I may have given it to my great-nieces. Th Flower Fairy books (about eith I have still). Oh, and the Moth fantasy, I kept that for a long time but I think it’s gone now. NO! I have it still ‘Cherrywinkle’ by Rosalie K Fry. A privet hawk moth, judging from the wonderful illustrations! Thank you for getting me to look at my shelf!! After that came the pony books…

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