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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Top 10 Books From My Teen Years That I Would Love To Revisit....and probably already have



This is a weekly event hosted by The Broke and The Bookish, where bloggers relate their "top ten" of a certain topic.  This week's topic - Top 10 Book From My Childhood (Or teen years) That I Would Love To Revisit.  Oh yeah!  Bring it on!  I love this topic.  I love thinking back on the books that meant so much to me as a teenager (which is the time period I selected - it was the '70's) and when I had my other blog, I did a feature occasionally that was called "Bookish Nostalgia".  Each of those posts was a highlight of some author or book that I had loved at some time in my past, mostly my teen and early adult years.  I was a book reading teen - a library visiting, stay up until all hours finishing one more chapter, love the summer for the endless reading, boring beyond all measure unless I was talking books teen.  Here are a few of the books I loved and probably have already revisited...and I likely own a copy of these books, either on my shelves or on my Kindle.  I used the covers I remember from my first experience with them:




1. Christy by Catherine Marshall - The story of a young woman, Christy Huddleston, who goes to the Appalachians to teach and find friendship, heartbreak, and love.  And, of course, they made it into a TV show - which I did not watch.  I had never read anything with such wonderful descriptions of a culture and a people who lived with poverty every day.  I'm going to listen to it on audio at some point.



2. House of Scorpio by Pat Wallace - Such an interesting romance/sci fi/fantasy book.  People are divided into their astrological signs and the whole world is built around that - where you live, what you do, what you wear, who you marry.  In this book, there are 6 sisters who go on to find their 6 loves/husbands.  I've never read anything else like it.  This book is out of print and very, very hard to find.  And, yes, I have a copy that is virtually falling apart.  Wish they would release as an e-book.



3. Celia Garth by Gwen Bristow - Celia lives in Charleston, South Carolina during the Revolutionary War times and is a seamstress by trade.  She is asked to become a spy for the rebels and Francis Marion, the Swamp Fox.  Lots of intrigue and pretty good historical detail.  Plus romance of course.



4. Bride of Pendorric by Victoria Holt - Probably the first gothic romance I ever read.  I remember checking it out at my junior high school library, at the suggestion of the librarian.  I was mesmerized by the descriptions of Cornwall and Favel and Roc.  There was a crazy person in it, who looked like everyone else.  First time I ever had goosebumps on my scalp while reading.  I was hooked!



5. Wildfire at Midnight by Mary Stewart - Another early gothic romance by another author that I loved.  This one is set in Scotland - my first visit to the Hebrides (see why I like Peter May's books).  It has the Isle of Skye, mountain climbing, Gianetta and Nick, and another crazy person.  This is probably my favorite Mary Stewart book and that's saying something.



6. 'Salem's Lot by Stephen King - This was my first King book.  I picked it up from a grocery store paperback carousel while waiting for my car to be serviced.  I was in college and I started reading it right away.  It was also my first experience with vampires - not sparkly ones - the kind that scratched at the windows and said, "let me in...".  And my roommate was out of town.  I'm not sure I slept that weekend.  But, I was a Stephen King fan ever after.



7. The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom - I read this one in my early teens.  A friend's mother gave it to her and then she gave it to me to read.  It was probably my first experience reading about concentration camps.  I just could not get over the fact that this was a true story.  Corrie ten Boom and her family worked with the Dutch Resistance during WWII helping to hide individuals in a secret room in their house.  They ended up in a concentration camp and Corrie was the only survivor of her family.  Powerful stuff.



8. Penmarric by Susan Howatch - I think this book likely started my love of family sagas.  Again, set in Cornwall, it tells the story of a large family, the Castellacks and their home, Penmarric.  I can remember that I learned later that the characters were based on some of the royal family in English history of the 12th or 13th century.  Me, I just loved that the story went on and on and on.



9. Ammie, Come Home by Barbara Michaels - Oh my goodness - when I first read this wonderful ghost story, I was just delighted.  Of course, it's a romance too in the gothic vein, but the creepiness of it was lovely.  Set in Georgetown (Washington, DC area), Ruth and her niece, Sara, find that Ruth's house holds a secret from many years before.  And there are ghosts of a murderer and his victims.  I loved the books that author Barbara Michaels/Elizabeth Peters/Barbara Mertz wrote, in all her guises.  Her Michaels books are mostly a little more creepy rather than regular mysteries.  This one is a doozy and made me not want to turn out the light.



10. A Lantern in Her Hand by Bess Streeter Aldrich - I think I read this one perhaps even before my teens.  A lovely story of Abbie McKenzie who marries Will Deal and travels with him to settle in Nebraska in a sod house.  Based on the author's own family stories, much like the Little House books, but for an older reader.  A wonderful prairie story.

Well, I'll stop there.  I could go on and on, but I enjoyed this walk through my teen reading.  So, what were your favorite books as a teenager?

55 comments:

  1. I love your list, Kay! And some of those covers look so atmospheric! I think you should feature "Bookish Nostalgia" again on your blog because I sure want to read them!

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    1. Stay tuned. I might just do that or some form of it. ;-)

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  2. I used to devour Victoria Holt books when I was a teenager.

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    1. They were perfect, weren't they - for that time.

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  3. I think the Victoria Holt is the only one I've read (I've 'seen' Salem's Lot) but I really enjoyed reading about the others. I devoured anything I could find by Victoria Holt when I was in my twenties.

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    1. And she had a lot of books for us to devour, didn't she?

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  4. I remember reading Salem's Lot... it gave me nightmares for weeks! Great list, Kay.

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    1. Me too, JoAnn, so, of course, I have to read more of his work. LOL

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  5. Ha! I have that edition of SALEMS LOT complete with my mom's old bookmarks! It was my first King as well, though not my favorite. I think I need to reread it for sure. I still haven't read any Barbara Michaels but that one sounds amazing. I think I'll have to seek it out.

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    1. Yes, do try Ammie, Come Home. It might be a little dated, but I think you'd see what I mean about it. I had to hunt for that 'Salem's Lot cover - that blood drip. LOL

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  6. Salem's Lot. Of course! I read that when I was younger too. I also loved Victoria Holt. I was inspired by your post and wrote up my own. It will post tomorrow. I had so many books like I enjoyed but you were well-read as a kid, I was drawn in by drama.

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    1. Look forward to it, Ti. I read everything I could get my hands on, pretty much.

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  7. Great list! I haven't read any of them, the the titles and authors are familiar to me. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. They are oldies but goodies. :-)

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  8. :) My favorite Gwen Bristow is Jubilee Trail. I read and re-read it when I was in high school, and a couple of years, ordered a copy from Abe's books as it was out of print!

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    1. I liked Jubilee Trail a lot too - and have a copy of it. They released the Gwen Bristow books on Kindle not too long back. I was happy about that!

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  9. I can barely remember what I read last week much less in my teens! But I enjoyed being reminded of some fo the gothic stuff - Victoria Holt and Susan Howatch are names I recall with a lot of pleasure. I wonder whether I'd still feel the same if I read them again now... hmm!

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    1. I read a lot of the gothics. Susan Howatch had several that weren't the family sagas, but gothic romances. Liked those too. And I remember these because I used to hunt for them in used bookstores through the years. :-)

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  10. Great list, Kay! One of my mom's favorite books is Christy and I read it when I was a teen as a result. I remember really liking it and the short lived television series based on the book. The Hiding Place is another one I liked--and really moved me.

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    1. Yes, I'm betting both of those would have held up well. I do have Christy in my Audible library and will listen to it at some point.

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  11. Some great looking books on your list and Victoria Holt and Susan Howatch ring some fairly loud bells with me. Thanks for visiting my Tuesday post https://cleopatralovesbooks.wordpress.com/2015/03/24/tuesday-first-chapter-first-paragraph-march-24/

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    1. Glad to know I'm not the only one that remembers those authors. :-)

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  12. Nice list. I was heavily into mystery, scifi, and fantasy in my teens with an occasional other read. I didn't discover Gothic romance until I was older, but I still love it. As a teen I remember reading the Narnia books, Tolkien's books, Robert Heinlein, Interview with a Vampire, and The Outsiders to name a few. Thanks for sharing yours.

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    1. The Outsiders - my sister loved that book so much. Thanks for saying hello!

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  13. My mom loved gothic novels so she got me reading them, too. Victoria Holt. Mary Stewart. Phyllis Whitney. So lots of hours are very familiar to me.

    I love the idea, btw, of Bookish Nostalgia. I've been wanting to start a meme that is something like that.

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    1. Yes, I didn't add Phyllis Whitney, but I read a lot of her books too. I'm going to be doing Bookish Nostalgia again, but with a different slant. Coming soon.

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  14. Love that you have 'Salem's Lot on your list too! And Victoria Holt and Mary Stewart! My grandmother used to have bookcases full so I would read them every time I went over. Great list!

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    1. I just loved all those books - creepy old houses and scary stories.

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  15. What an eclectic list! I haven't heard of many of these, though I also read a lot of Stephen King as a teen.

    I love getting nostalgic about books!

    Sue

    Book By Book

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    1. I had a good time with this. Thanks for stopping by, Sue!

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  16. Oh! Christy! You don't see that book very much anymore. My favorite middle school teacher recommended it to me, and of course, I loved it. Now, this list definitely brings back some memories. Wow.

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    1. No, you don't see Christy much and it is such a worthwhile book.

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  17. I love your list! I think I am just a tad young for some of them (I was a teen in the 90s) BUT! Christy! I DID watch the show (with Kellie Martin!) and I LOVED IT. If I had known there was a book... well, I would have been all over it. In fact, I still might! GREAT list!

    Shannon @ It Starts At Midnight

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    1. Shannon, you would like the book even now. It's not a kid's book and has some scary moments.

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  18. I loved Christy too, the book, that is. I don't remember seeing the TV show. The setting really captivated me and I still remember it. Penmaric rings a bell, but I can't remember the story. Looks like something I should try. I like a good family saga. Barbara Taylor Bradford was a favorite of mine for that.

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    1. I read BTB as well - Woman of Substance and the books after that. Loved them.

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  19. Ooh! Salem's Lot! I didn't read that til my junior or senior year of high school, but I read Pet Sematary in 6th or 7th grade, and Cujo right after that. And Barbara Michaels! I was a bigger fan of her work as Elizabeth Peters (Amelia Peabody and Vicky Bliss remain some of my favorite mystery novel heroines), but I must have read a dozen or more Barbara Michaels books too.

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    1. Pet Sematary in 6th grade - scary! Yes, Elizabeth Peters/Barbara Michaels has a lot of good books.

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  20. Lol - I'm scrolling along seeing these sweet, love stories and then all of a sudden, bam, there's Salem's Lot! You had quite the varied tastes.

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    1. Well, I did read 'Salem's Lot in college. But, yes, love stories, horror, mysteries - that was my teen years. :-)

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  21. Now that I've got a handle on King I'm tempted to read Salem's Lot. There was a little blip in Pet Sematary referring to the town Jerusalem.

    Loved The Hiding Place! This is such a fun post. Love all those covers!

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    1. Thanks Trish! 'Salem's Lot is pretty scary - you've read The Shining and It - if you can handle those, this likely wouldn't be too bad.

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  22. CHRISTIE! I remember reading that and being soo affected emotionally by it. To the point where I'm totally turned off of reading "My Best Everything" because from the reviews I've read it has a romanticized outlook about Appalachian moonshine culture. On one review I was like: Oh you haven't read Christie, have you.

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    1. Alisa, good to hear about your experience with Christy. It was based on the author's mother and her time as a teacher in the Appalachians - fictionalized, of course. For me, it was very eye-opening. Thanks for stopping by!

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  23. What interesting reading you did as a teenager. The Stephen King title is the only one I've heard of, and I've not read any of them. Amazing how there are so many books out there that our reading experiences can be so different.

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    1. Well, these books may be a little too old for many to remember. And the Stephen King book was more in my late teens. :-)

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  24. I remember Penmarric and Bride of Pendorric. I loved those authors. I think they came in my mother's Book of the Month club boxes that I wasn't supposed to open until she decided if she wanted them and I did anyway. :) Also read a lot of Mary Stewart. But not that one I don't think.

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    1. I think you and I have talked about our early reading. Funny about opening the Book of the Month boxes. Bet she was unhappy if you opened and she was going to send back. LOL

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  25. What a fun post! Oh I love gothic type novels and Barbara Michaels books are just great aren't they? It's been forever since I've read one of hers. Can you believe I've not read anything by Mary Stewart? I need to remedy that!

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    1. Oh, you need to read some Mary Stewart. Really. She had some great settings for her books.

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  26. Another Christy fan here. I'm pretty sure my parents told me once I was named after the main character. I watched the tv show as well. I think it was really faithful at the start and then started incorporating more original plotting, for better or worse.

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    1. I just never watched the TV show. Maybe my life was too busy at that point or something. Glad to know that there is another fan out there. :-)

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  27. Gosh. I know I read a lot as a teen, but I really can't remember any specific titles. Maybe just a few. I know I read Go Ask Alice and The Outsiders. I also read The Shining (on the beach, in broad daylight, surrounded by tourists so I wouldn't be scared!). Oh, and Forever by Judy Blume. Other than that, I really don't remember! Isn't that terrible? I read A Lantern in Her Hand after we moved to Nebraska, probably in the late '90s. I loved being able to picture the various locations in the book, recognizing the various Nebraska landmarks, much as I did when I read Willa Cather's My Antonia.

    Great list, Kay!

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    1. My sister read Go Ask Alice and The Outsiders. I remember she loved them. I laughed at reading The Shining on the beach. It was a pretty intense, wasn't it? And I'm trying to think if I knew you read A Lantern In Her Hand - I think I might have. Seem to remember we talked about it one year or maybe in the late '90's - back in the beginnings of when we knew each other. :-)

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    2. Yes, now I remember we did talk about A Lantern in Her Hand way back when. Gosh, was that almost 20 years ago? OK, maybe more like 18 years. :)

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Thanks for stopping by! I am so happy to hear your thoughts and will respond as soon as I can. Happy Reading!