Second weekend in the month, time to set aside my Outer Grown-Up reading and heed the Inner Child again and I have been looking forward to this at least since the last one ended. I'm wondering how easy it will be to set aside the grown-up reading this time because I have some brilliant books on the go, but as my last choices all worked their magic bar one I shall just have to be disciplined about it in that eight-year old way I used to be so good at.
Somehow Malcolm Saville did not survived this time round. Perhaps I'd topped up my Inner Child sufficiently and needed no more but sadly The Mystery at Witchend remains unfinished.
However a big part of the anticipation has been thinking exactly what I will pull off the shelves this time and I think I have another fine selection.
We used to spend family holidays in the early 1960s with one of those honorary aunts and uncles that your parents collect for you; their friends who you'd call Auntie and Uncle because to use first names would have been considered incredibly precocious and impolite. Uncle B. ran a market garden in Tintagel before Tintagel was ever commercialised and Auntie P. taught at the primary school in nearby Delabole. They had three boys and we would all head off (well one was still a baby so we sensibly left him behind) sans grown-ups, to explore Valency Valley, St Nectan's Glen and Merlin's Cove, all very adventurous and as the only girl I really had to fly the bravado flag and keep up.
Being a teacher Auntie P. knew all the right books for 1960's children and it was whilst staying in Tintagel that I first and most memorably read The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S.Lewis. But another Auntie P. book selection was The Otterbury Incident by C.Day Lewis and I remember being enthralled by both the story and the delightful Edward Ardizzone illustrations, so that has gone onto my pile for this weekend. I can't for the life of me remember quite what the Incident was (DON'T TELL ME) so I'm looking forward to this one and this is my original copy, even better.
Next, The Family From One End Street by Eve Garnett.
This was a school Going Home Time read and I can see Miss Butteriss (Butterdish) reading it and see myself sitting on the floor in Blue Class listening intently and not wanting it to end. Before we knew it it was prayers and chairs on desks and we were out, but I'll bet I wandered down Sherwood Park Road in Mitcham towards the 118 bus stop, thinking deeply about the Ruggles family. This would have also meant my brother and I would not have been having our usual debate about whether to spend our bus money in the chewing gum machine instead (because the arrow was pointing forward and this meant a free packet next go) and then walking home across Mitcham Common and a quick explore of Seven Islands Pond ( OMG imagine that now... a Common and a pond) and having to explain why we were so late when we finally walked in the door. I suspect the state of our shoes gave the game away.
I can't keep my hands off Magnolia Buildings by Elizabeth Stucley a minute longer either. A book erased from my memory until I found it in Topsham a few weeks ago and recognised the cover in an instant.
But how old was I?
Looking inside the book I'm now recalling the recent furore over age-banding children's books because interestingly each of these old Puffins gives an age-banding inside and this one is for 'ten years and over'.
Finally The Silver Sword by Ian Serraillier and this one I know was one of the library holiday reading contest reads but my recollections are sketchy verging on non-existent, which all goes to prove I was reading like the blazes to get my card ticked, I'll slow down this time round.
Well, that's me sorted, how about you?
Anyone want to join my gang?
Password - sausages, but don't tell anyone else.