Tuesday, 6 December 2011
Top Ten Tuesday
Top Two Childhood Favourites
The Babysitters Club and Sweet Valley High!- I always group these two series of books together in my brain because they were essentially 80% of my childhood reading. For me, there was nothing else, apart from those seven girls who liked babysitting maybe a little too much, and those paragons of unhealthy relationships with other people, the Wakefield twins.
I'm being wholly unfair about these books now, because hindsight, as well as quite a few very very amusing snarky blogs about both series; has given me a whole new perspective on them (in fact, reading those blogs were my very first introduction to book blogs, on a slippery slope of an afternoon when I was just trying to find out something about one Babysitters Club book- and look at me now!) But really, I couldn't have loved them more! I never wanted to be a babysitter, but I so badly wanted to be friends with the girls in the club- mainly with Dawn, Stacey and Claudia, but I would have put up with the others too just to hang out with them and go to their sleepovers and just generally hanging around them. I also used to get my sister to quiz me on Babysitters Club knowledge, and let's just say there was never anything that she knew that I didn't! Any time there was a new load of Babysitters Club books at my local library, I had to get them all out at once, and always read them before the three weeks I had them for was up.
I just loved them! I went to the Cayman Islands on holiday when I was 9, and in a bookshop they had AMERICAN COVERED Babysitters Club books, and I swear I nearly peed my pants, and the fact that I only got two of them speaks volumes about my self control that's sadly vanished around books in recent years! For that same holiday, though, I also had my very first Sweet Valley High books for plane reading and whatnot, and oh my gosh I was hooked! I couldn't have wanted to live anywhere more than Sweet Valley, California; and whilst I thought I was already on a level with the Babysitters Club crew, and could be their friend right away, the whole Sweet Valley gang was the kind of gang I aspired to be part of. I quite severely wanted to be Jessica (because she was the most 'fun', a more mature look at her reveals her to be a sociopath) and to have her group of competitive and mildly evil friends, as well as a long line of attractive boys, who would do anything to be my boyfriend.
Needless to say, my teenage years were unlike both the child obsessed ones of the Babysitters Club, and the frightening scenarios of Sweet Valley High, and may I just say, thank GAWD! Nonetheless, I loved them and will always carry them in my heart, much as I now like to mock them all mercilessly, as well as looking at others who do so on the internet (if you were a Sweet Valley High fan too, click on the link to The Dairi Burger right there on the right- you won't be disappointed!) Good role models? Not necessarily. But an all consuming childhood obsession? Undoubtedly.
How about you? Did you have a few go-to book series as a child, or were you far more well rounded and well balanced than me?