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April 9: Top Ten Favorite Books I Read Before I Was A Blogger

Certainly being a blogger has introduced me to a lot of new books, some of which would make a list of favorites. Most of these are old favorites, much older than the year and three months I’ve been blogging. So some of them are for younger readers, but still wonderful.

And each is truly a favorite of mine on its own, instead of me listing series I adore, which isn’t following the rules. 🙂


1. Dragonsong; Anne McCaffrey. Part of her dragon riders of Pern series–set on a colony world rife with problems that destroyed the colonists’ technology, the worst among them Thread, an all-devouring organism that falls from the sky. This is the first of three books about the harpers (musicans) of Pern, focusing on Menolly. The struggles and triumphs in this book make the others possible, which is why it’s my favorite.

fried green tomatoes

2. Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe; Fannie Flagg. A story within a story, and delightfully weird. The story within centers on The Whistle Stop Cafe, and a town full of some fascinating characters. If you haven’t read this one, you should. The telling of the tale brings changes to the frame characters in the book, maybe it will bring changes to you.


3. Holes; Lois Sachar. Stanley Yelnats is serving time at Camp Green Lake, where the ‘campers’ dig holes to build character. Are these juvenile offenders really the bad guys, though? Gypsy curses, betrayal, bad luck, and redemption… Despite the serious subject, this book makes me smile.


4. Matilda; Roald Dahl. A tiny, brilliant little girl fights against adults who terrorize her. The villains are so wicked, you really cheer for their downfall. And Matilda loves to read–what more can you ask for than a clever, bookish hero?

mus of kerbridge

5. Mus of Kerbridge; Paul Kidd. A magical mouse, centaurs, satyrs, and humans, set in a classic fantasy world. Sweet, cute, and satisfying. I read this book so much I had to get a new copy.

secret garden

6. The Secret Garden; Frances Hodgson Burnett. Mary lost her parents and her home, but it’s hard to pity her, as she is as contrary as any nursery rhyme character. But her new guardian has a lot of secrets, and in uncovering them, Mary will learn new things about herself–potential she never knew she had.

Treasure Island

7. Treasure Island; Robert Louis Stevenson. A classic tale of a boy’s adventure, Jim Hawkins joins a ship’s crew in a search for hidden treasure. He thinks he knows the people he trusts, but people have hidden secrets, too. Another nostalgic book for me–there were so few girl’s adventure books to read, so this one made my inner pirate happy.

white gryphon

8. The White Gryphon; Mercedes Lackey. Part of Lackey’s Valdemar series, but before the kingdom existed–these books are about the mage wars that helped create it, in fact. Talking gryphons, mages, and magic. If you like fantasy you should give these series a shot. (Warning: there’s a lot of them.) Book two of three. But this one is my favorite.

wind witch

9. The Wind Witch; Susan Dexter. Druyan has a talent–sometimes the wind responds to her whistle–but she’s kept it well hidden. Made a widow by the war, she has to use all her talents and resources to survive, even the ones her people disapprove of. Another book two of three. But each book has a different main character, so they do stand alone.

Wrinkle in Time

10. A Wrinkle in Time; Madeline L’Engle. Meg and Charles Wallace’s father was kidnapped, and they’ll travel far and face a terrible evil to get him back. The rest is pretty complicated, but as a child I respected this book so much for not talking down to me. Not for everyone, but everyone should at least give it a look!

About Caitlin Stern

I have a MA in English, and have so many fantasy/urban fantasy WIPs it's not even funny. I'm an avid reader of science fiction, fantasy, mystery, romance, biography, fiction, and anything else that catches my interest. I collect books, and bookmarks I find that are visually appealing and useful.

4 responses »

  1. Some fantastic classics on your list! The Secret Garden is one of my favorite tales and I swear I’ve watched every version of the book to film a million times.

    My Top Ten

    • caitlinstern says:

      Most of those books became favorites in middle school and high school, but they’re still great! 🙂
      I pretty much adore everything by Tamora Pierce, too.

  2. I was trying to remember books that I read prior to blogging and I really had difficulties! Then I remembered some books I read when I was a teen and put that in 😀

    My Top Ten

    Have a great week!

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