Saturday, July 25, 2009

Series Nostalgia

I've always been a voracious reader. I remember when I was seven or eight, I stayed up until midnight reading Ramona Quimby, Age 8. I finished it, and I'd only gotten it that afternoon!

When I was about ten, I started to get interested in series books. I never actually read all the books in any one series (they tended to be released long after I'd lost interest), but I did read quite a few of them. I can remember begging (and bugging) my mom for the next book in whatever series I was reading at the time. Back then, these books usually cost less than $3 each (a bargain by today's standards... I paid almost $13 for the most recent YA paperback I bought!), but when a new one comes out every month or so, that cost can quickly add up.

So what was I reading? Well, The Baby-Sitters Club, of course! Pretty much every girl my age was reading these books back in the mid-to-late 1980s. And, of course, we all wanted to be baby-sitters. The books made it seem like a fun job... more fun than it actually turned out to be, really. But at least reading about the girls' adventures was entertaining.

I think I read about 30 of the regular series, plus a handful of the Super Specials. There ended up being over 130 books in the series, but since I was in my 20s by that time, I wasn't reading them when the final ones were published.

At around the same time, I started reading the Sleepover Friends series. I don't think they were as popular as The Baby-Sitters Club books, but I liked them. They were about four friends who had weekly sleepovers. After reading the first book, I wished for my own sparkly purple hair gel.

A little while after that, I was given a number of Trixie Belden books. I'd never heard of Trixie Belden, but my mom had. You see, Trixie Belden is old. Her first adventures were published in 1948 (though the series did run until 1986... at which point Trixie should have been in her 50s, but hey... it's fiction, right?). I didn't read that many of the Trixie Belden books, but I did enjoy the ones I did read. I guess they're probably similar to the Nancy Drew books (but I can't say for sure, never having read any of those).

When I was eleven (I think), I was given the first book in The Secret of the Unicorn Queen series. I was never really crazy about unicorns, but I loved the fantasy aspects of the books. Only six titles were published, and I never managed to get my hands on the last three (the bookstores just didn't carry them). Maybe one day I'll track them down and read them all.

What were some of your favourite book series when you were a kid?


  1. The Babysitters Club Super Specials! I forgot about those. Oh wow, those were great books! Or at least they seemed to be at the time :)

    And your right, I was somewhat shocked to find out that babysitting really wasn't as fun in real life as it seemed to be in those books.

  2. I miss my BSC books! In typical mom fashion, my mother gave mine away without telling me when I was twenty. I get all weary thinking about trying to find them again.