Before Kindle’s and e-readers, actual physical books were a big part of our lives. I always had my nose in a book when I was younger! How many of these 10 classics do you remember reading?
1. The Worst Witch
The Worst Witch is a series of children’s books written and illustrated by Jill Murphy. The series are primarily boarding school and fantasy stories, with seven books already published. The first one, The Worst Witch, was published in 1974 by Allison & Busby, and the most recent one, The Worst Witch and the Wishing Star, was published in 2013 by Puffin Books, the current publisher of all the series. The books have become some of the most outstandingly successful titles on the Young Puffin paperback list and have sold more than 4 million copies. The books focus on Mildred Hubble, a young witch who attends Miss Cackle’s Academy for Witches, a school of magic. Although well-intentioned, Mildred’s clumsy personality leads the girl to disastrous situations, and she is thus considered the worst student in the whole school. The benevolent headmistress, Miss Cackle, is generally understanding, whereas Mildred’s form teacher Miss Hardbroom thinks she just isn’t trying hard enough. Mildred’s friends include Maud Spellbody, a rotund, sensible girl who is always trying to avoid confusion, and Enid Nightshade, a practical joker who is more likely than Mildred to get them all into trouble. The three girls have a strong rivalry with Ethel Hallow, a high-born, snobbish and vindictive classmate.
2. Stig of the Dump
Stig of the Dump is a children’s novel by Clive King, first published in the United Kingdom in 1963. It is regarded as a modern children’s classic and is often read in schools. It was illustrated by Edward Ardizzone and has been twice adapted for television, in 1981 and in 2002. It was first broadcast as an adaptation on BBC Home Service for schools in November 1964, and later on the BBC series Blue Peter. Barney is a young boy staying with his grandparents on the chalk Downs of southern England. He is the main character of the book and when he falls over the edge of an old chalk pit close to Barney’s grandparents’ house he tumbles down through the roof of Stig’s den. When he looks round, he encounters Stig, apparently a caveman with shaggy, black hair and bright black eyes. The chalk pit is disused and full of people’s dumped rubbish.
3. Jennifer Yellow-Hat
One, Two, Three and Away (ISBN 0003142183) was a series of books for children written by Sheila K. McCullagh, illustrated by Ferelith Eccles Williams and published by Collins in the 1960s–80s. Characters include: Roger Red Hat, Billy Blue Hat, twins Johnny and Jennifer Yellow Hat and Percy Green. The books were written at a number of levels of increasing difficulty for those learning to read. An educational video edition of One, Two, Three and Away: The Village with Three Corners was also released in 1996 by First Independent Video. Directed by Mark Taylor and produced by Bristol-based animation studio A Productions, the video consisted of drawn animation sequences, on screen games and songs. It was executive produced by Dan Maddicott at United Media.